CNL in Chicago

The Center for News Literacy has begun working with partner organizations in the city of Chicago, Illinois since 2014 to provide professional development and supplemental educational opportunities to educators in the subject of News Literacy to continue to spread the Stony Brook model to more and more citizens.

See our listings below for lessons that were created specifically for this cohort of trainees, localized to the Chicago area, and the work that was born out of the extended partnerships. 

Chicago Localized Lesson Plans: 

  • See this folder of materials for lesson plans that focus on local issues in the Chicago area written by journalists from the Chicago area and editors focused on the midwest region. 

Partner Teacher Resources

More on our current and previous partners in Chicago 

asnlogo.pngAlternative Schools Network

ASN serves as a conduit for the work of its member schools and community-based programs, connecting the mission, goals, strategies and outcomes to create a unified community of active participants in programming. Through this role, ASN links the voices of its partner communities to marshal resources and expertise that will improve the outcomes for its target populations.

By working in partnership with community-based organizations & schools, the Alternative Schools Network re-engages a diverse community of learners to actualize their true academic potential & personal goals by promoting educational innovation, workforce opportunities & civic participation for future leadership and service.

Through its program ASNews -- the Alternative Schools Network has provided training in News Literacy to teachers in its network of schools since 2013. Its mission is stated as:
ASNews will bring news literacy skills to students in alternative schools by linking teachers to critical thinking approaches to reading, watching, and listening to the news of the day and supporting youth-produced journalism telling stories from Chicago communities.

The Center for News Literacy trained staff from Alternative Schools Network in 2013, and has provided continued training for both its staff and teachers since 2015 through classroom visits and teacher training sessions.


ctvnlogo.pngCommunity TV Network

Community TV Network (CTVN), a leader in community access to media, empowers low-income young adults and children in Chicago by engaging them in the creative and collaborative process of digital video production.

Harnessing this dynamic process and the resulting media content, CTVN promotes positive youth and community development with the overall goal of raising the educational success and economic viability of the neighborhoods in which youth participants live and work. CTVN programs instill in youth the awareness, motivation, and tools they need to create positive futures for themselves and their neighborhoods.

The Center for News Literacy continues to provide training to the Community TV Network through the Alternative Schools Network in 2018.


enhlogo.pngErie Neighborhood House

Erie Neighborhood House is a social service agency, founded in 1870, with a mission to promote a just and inclusive society by strengthening low-income, primarily Latino families through skill-building, access to critical resources, advocacy and collaborative action.

Youth Options Unlimited (YOU) is an after-school expanded learning program for ages 12-18, that strives to partner with the youth and create an environment where they are challenged and respected, have opportunities for intellectual, physical and emotional growth, and their leadership potential is developed. 

In 2013, after finding that most news literacy curriculums were dry and boring (and clearly created by adults for a traditional classroom setting) we set out to create a fun, interactive news literacy curriculum, by teens for teens. 

The bilingual curriculum is now nearly ready for mass production and comes with a kit that includes all the supplies needed to teach it, including white boards for playing Jeopardy, props for skits, and a press freedom board game. 

See the Curriclulum booklet and other digital tools here

The authors of this curriculum don't want to be journalists (they're actually in nursing school) but they see the value in these concepts and in sharing them with others. We hope that this curriculum opens up the world of news literacy to a broader audience of young people and furthers them on their path to becoming critical consumers of information.