The lessons in this section are designed to give students an introduction to the history, technology, and social issues of war correspondence and the news media.

Telling the Story

Today, news comes to us on our computers and televisions, via reporters from all over the world who use laptops, modems, digital cameras, and satellites to do their work. But for centuries, the world got its news of war in much more simplified forms. The lessons in this unit will help you to discover how news of war was communicated in earlier times. From smoke signals to the telegraph, follow the evolution.

A Question of Passion

What is good reporting? Some experts believe that it is an unbiased account of facts. Others think the best reporting includes a personalized telling of an event. Explore objectivity and subjectivity, impartiality and passionate involvement. In these lessons you will consider whether objectivity is ever truly possible and whether it should be the goal of news reporting.

Is Seeing Believing?

How were 19th century and early 20th century photos processed? Learn about the evolution of photography, especially on the battle field, and analyze the role of the photographer during three wars.

Understanding Your Destination

You are a correspondent being sent out to cover a conflict about which you know little. Who’s in charge? Where will you land? Is it hot there? A series of activities will help you to analyze the conflict and prepare for your upcoming job.

Witness and Activist

If someone is shot in front of you, do you start bandaging them or keep clicking through your camera lens? Which is more affective in the long run? Through the Spanish Civil War, the war in Bosnia, and Dan’s experiences in Somalia, consider the possible roles that a journalist can play within the complexities of a specific war.

Technology on the Front

World War II was the first war to be widely photographed for public viewing. Vietnam was the first “television war.” How have technological advances, especially in the media, affected our perception of war?

Download Curriculum (PDFs)

> Before The Correspondents

> War Accoutrements

> Tellers of the Tale