Middle school students produce Eagle Eye News

(WBIR-Campbell County) Students at Jacksboro Middle School are not only studying journalism, they're also doing it.

"We have sports, we have clubs, we have entertainment where they cover the outside world entertainment of pop culture and things like that. They enjoy that," Cara Beth Nidiffer explained.

She is the journalism teacher at Jacksboro Middle School in Campbell County. She organizes dozens of students who produce Eagle Eye News.

"The kids run it themselves. I monitor them and maybe give them a little guidance but other than that they've been running the program," she said.

Just like in a typical newsroom, there's a lot more to it than the anchors on the set. That's something 8th grader Lindsey Horton realized right away.

"I thought everyone just came in and did it but there' s bunch of stuff between everyone getting the stories and the editing and then filming itself is really hard. Being a teenager and having to say everything but I love it. It's very interesting," Lindsey Horton said.

The students use computers with a non-linear editing program and software that gives them a lot of technical options.

Lindsey said, "We added a green screen into our filming room so instead of making our own backgrounds we've improved it dramatically so we just move our green screen to put whatever we want."

Noah Smith uses the green screen for his weather forecast.

He gestured to the blank green wall and said, "It will start to cool down as we start into next week with highs in the upper 60s."

Watch out Todd Howell!

Hands on learning teaches them time management and organization and creativity on a deadline. Their teacher sees them give it their best effort.

"They know people are going to see what they do, they're going to see them on camera so they have to work hard and practice," Cara Beth Nidiffer said.

Eagle Eye News airs every other week on WLAF and in the school cafeteria.

Noah Smith said, "Everybody here contributes in some way to the newscast. Even if they're not on camera they still contribute."

Eagle Eye News would love to feature advertising or recruit sponsors to pay for additional equipment.


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