A niche of their own: Jiemin Primary School

Kid reporters on the beat

Two Jiemin Primary pupils, armed with a microphone and an iPad, interviewing a schoolmate.
Two Jiemin Primary pupils, armed with a microphone and an iPad, interviewing a schoolmate.PHOTO: JIEMIN PRIMARY SCHOOL'S JOURNALIST CLUB

Jiemin Primary School is home to aspiring reporters from its Journalist Club, some of whom have their sights set on being international or even war journalists.

Armed with a microphone and iPad for recording, pupils are often seen walking around their school sniffing for scoops.

The budding journalists know how to handle DSLR cameras and they also write articles for the school's newsletters.

Ms Joanne Lim, head of the school's English department, said: "All along, we have been doing a lot of writing. So, we thought, why not make the programme more distinctive for the school."

The Journalist Club is part of the school's Applied Learning Programme, in which students learn to express themselves and build their confidence through writing and communication.

"The club helped me slowly gain my confidence," said Primary 5 pupil Aaliayah Nursyazlynn Jamil, who was previously afraid of speaking to large crowds.

At the club, pupils learn skills such as drawing storyboards, preparing interview questions and editing videos.

At the club, pupils learn skills such as drawing storyboards, preparing interview questions and editing videos. They are coached weekly by a trainer, who crafts lessons that are more palatable for a younger group without watering down the experience.

Another programme lets the pupils read out segments of the news that have been selected from the newspapers. Like broadcast presenters, they, too, present the news to an audience.For a start, though, they do so at the school library. Jiemin Primary also offers targeted programmes for each level. Theseinclude poetry recitation and puppetry.

"It's an opportunity to build on their interests," said Ms Lim.

Some parents who are considering sending their children to Jiemin, have asked for the school's semestral newsletter. Ms Lim hopes that the programme will give all pupils an edge when they head to secondary school.

"It is also something that will help them as they progress up the different levels," she added.

Rahimah Rashith

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 15, 2016, with the headline 'Kid reporters on the beat'. Print Edition | Subscribe