The Newspaper in Education/Youth Readership Program
of the New Jersey Newspaper Foundation
Teacher's Guide to the First
One of the most important elements of the New Jersey
Newspaper Foundation's presentation of Woman
of the World: The Story of Nellie Bly is the
attention given to the First Amendment of the U.S.
Constitution. Chapter 3 of the Guide
for Teachers, Students and Families illustrates the importance of
the press freedom in the United States.
I urge you to download
and use the First Amendment Curriculum Guides, which were developed by the Illinois First
Amendment Center and updated in 2010. One is for
Grades 5-7. The other for
In order to retrieve that PDF file you
will need Adobe Reader, which comes installed on most
computers. Adobe Reader is available free at www.adobe.com.
I recommend that you print the
curriculum guide so it's handy for use throughout during the school
Research by the John S. and James L.
Knight Foundation in 2005 showed that lack of awareness
and appreciation of the First Amendment is most acute in
the media-rich suburban schools of America. Many New
Jersey communities fit that description.
The shocking fact to come from the
Knight Foundation research was that many of the 112,000
young Americans randomly surveyed said they approve of
government censorship of the media.
Government censorship: That's exactly
what Nellie Bly found in foreign countries when she filed
her news reports during the late 1800's.
As Chapter 3 of the NewsBook mentions,
Nellie had to return to the United States before she
could write the truth about what conditions were in other
parts of the world.
We all must work hard today to keep
The First Amendment Curriculum Guides are important, useful information for
teachers who want to help students the value of freedom
Click on the links below to download the
First Amendment Curriculum Guides:
John J. O'Brien, Director, New Jersey Newspaper Foundation
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