Learn & Play
Lesson Plan

Breaking News – The State of Israel is Born!

The birth of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948 was reported in newspapers all over the world. Reading the coverage of the event shows us how the editors of each newspaper related to the news and what the readers learned about the event. In this unit students will discover how the news was reported in the new state’s first week. Then they will announce the historic event using today’s media.

How did newspapers around the world report the birth of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948? How would you announce it today?
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Group Activity

In this activity, students are divided into groups and each group analyזes the front page of a different newspaper.

Assign a newspaper from the NLI Historical Jewish Press Catalogue  to each group OR teach the students how to search the NLI Historical Jewish Press Catalogue and let them choose their own newspaper.

  • Give each group large Post-It notes of one color. (Each group has its own color.)
  • Each group studies the newspaper from the day that the State of Israel was established.
  • Students write the name of the newspaper and the headline of each article relating to the creation of Israel on a different Post-It note.
  • Students stick the notes to a wall or white board.

They should group the headlines by topic: e.g., all headlines declaring the creation of the state are grouped together, all headlines about the United States’ recognition of the State of Israel are grouped together, etc.

Group Activity

  • What is the format of a newspaper report? (refer to length, photographs, titles, subtitles, writing style)
  • What is the difference between an opinion article and a reporting article?
  • What are some features of newspaper headlines? 
  • What type of design is used to announce a very significant event?
  • What kind of information do you think is included in a report of a dramatic event?
  • What might have been the headline announcing the creation of the State of Israel?

  • What did you learn about the creation of the State of Israel and the events surrounding it from the newspapers?
  • Which different topics did the headlines refer to?
  • Who was the audience of each of the newspapers that you examined?
  • Which stories were in all of the newspapers examined?
  • Which story was unique to a specific paper?
  • Why do certain stories appear in all of the newspapers?
  • Why do some newspapers report on something that the others don’t?
  • How were important events announced in 1948?
  • What media outlets were there?
  • How is news disseminated today?
  • What types of media outlets are popular?

Creative Activity

Announce the Creation of the State of Israel Using Modern Media

Based on your understanding about how to report dramatic events and the changes that have occurred in the media since 1948, you will create your own reports on the establishment of the State of Israel.

Choose one of the following activities:

  • Create your own newspaper

Create a front page of a newspaper announcing the establishment of the State of Israel. Suggested website: Makemynewspaper. Click here for tutorials.

  • Announce the birth of Israel on social media

Students announce the birth of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948 as if it had happened today by creating fake posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram etc.

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In this activity, students are divided into groups and each group analyזes the front page of a different newspaper.

Assign a newspaper from the NLI Historical Jewish Press Catalogue  to each group OR teach the students how to search the NLI Historical Jewish Press Catalogue and let them choose their own newspaper.

  • Give each group large Post-It notes of one color. (Each group has its own color.)
  • Each group studies the newspaper from the day that the State of Israel was established.
  • Students write the name of the newspaper and the headline of each article relating to the creation of Israel on a different Post-It note.
  • Students stick the notes to a wall or white board.

They should group the headlines by topic: e.g., all headlines declaring the creation of the state are grouped together, all headlines about the United States’ recognition of the State of Israel are grouped together, etc.