AP Lang project trades essays for journalism


Aaron Boehmer

Studying the fundamentals of a synthesis essay, students listen to AP Language teacher Swapna Gardner's instructions. With the news project, students have a chance to understand the different perspectives involved in a topic of their choice.

Abby Wang, Staff Reporter

Trying their hands at a little bit of broadcast journalism, juniors in AP Language are recording videos to practice argumentative writing in a project due Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Students will find a current event issue and consider a specific decision that’s been made,” teacher Swapna Gardner said. “[They will find out] who are all the stakeholders, what went into that decision being made and then where do they stand on that decision. The purpose of this project is to see how everything is rhetoric. Whether it’s health or entertainment, or anything else like politics, they get to sort of explore what’s interesting to them and I like to hear them when I walk around. [As they film their videos] they are doing exactly what they need to do on the synthesis essay, it’s just like, I don’t think they realize that they are doing advanced skills, so that’s nice too.”

Topics range from the legalization of marijuana to Megxit, students are given freedom to explore an area that they are interested in. For junior Connie Yang, the project gives her a chance to see how rhetorical writing is applicable outside of the classroom.

“I think it’s like a fun way to like learn about the argument essay,” Yang said. “I haven’t really looked at a lot of news stories so I had to watch a lot of [videos] to see how to format the video, but I think a cool part is you can see how the stories are formatted like an argument.”

Utilizing the storytelling format of broadcast journalism, junior Allison Zhang sees the project as a way to make her writing have more fluidity.

“Formatting the argument like a news story makes it flow more smoothly,” junior Allison Zhang said. “If we were just doing an informational story it wouldn’t be as engaging. Rather than a news story, it’s just the two sides talking with each other, and the information just flows.”