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Teaching Tips

We are collecting tips from high school newspaper advisers nationwide on how to run student publications and deal with the issues from administrators, students and parents.

Stylebook race

Laura Hardman
Glenwood Springs (Colo.) High School


Two or more stylebooks of the same year, list of questions and the page number of each answer.


Divide the class into two or more teams (depending on the number of stylebooks). The first player from each team comes to the front of the class where the stylebooks are kept. The teacher asks a question, and the student to find the answer and the page number first earns a point for his or her team. The winner then reads the answer to the rest of the class, then the next two players form each team come to the front of the class for their turn. You could also use the questions at the Copy Editing 101 site, http://www.longleaf.net/newsroom101/.

Sample questions and answers

  • What is the difference between murder, manslaughter and homicide? [Students will immediately turn to the page of the “murder” entry, but will be redirected to the page with the “homicide” entry.]
  • Give one correct and one incorrect example of the use of the word “less.” [Again, students will look up less, but will be redirected to “fewer.”]
  • Why should the word “Kleenex” always be capitalized?
  • What are the five Nobel Prizes?
  • What is the singular of “alumni”? [Students must identify the form for a man and a woman.]
  • What is the rule for writing movie titles?
  • Spell Wal-Mart correctly. Even if they know the correct spelling, they must find the page with the answer in the stylebook.]
  • If the wind is blowing 20 mph, and the air temperature is 10 degrees Fahrenheit, what is the wind chill factor? [Students must look under “weather” to find the answer to this answer 24 degrees below zero. I include this question to show them the breadth of information found in the stylebook.]
  • What is the difference between a pupil and a student?
  • What are the rules for including an Internet address in an article?