Newspaper report

Newspaper reports give you the facts, backed up by quotes and evidence, but it’s the journalist who decides what facts are worth reporting. This report shows a politician presenting at an awards night, but the ‘news’ wasn’t that – it was something they said in their speech.

That shows another part of report writing – journalists assume that people could stop reading at any time, so what’s considered the most important information is put first. So an eye-catching title (headline) and the first couple of sentences (lead) should give the most important details. From there, the writing should give increasing detail. 

Have a read.


MELBOURNE: The ambition of all children should be to run their own small business, according to Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett.

Mr Kennett gave his advice to the younger generation while announcing the state Government’s small business awards.

“As I’ve said to people in the public sector ‘You will never know what you’re worth, while you work for someone else’.”

Mr Kennett said only the private sector could make Victoria and Australia “grow”, and children should be encouraged to open up shop.

At yesterday’s awards, the Premier’s gold medal for international achievement was won by VME Systems, which developed industrial, communications and training systems being exported to Singapore, Korea, Taiwan and Japan.

Now let’s look at an example of the same treatment using this painting as the starting point.


ZUTPHEN: We must be careful with our food this winter, according to Zutphen Mayor, Lotte Visser.

Ms Visser gave this warning to everyone who attended this week’s town meeting at the Zutphen Community Hall.

“Five of our finest hunting parties have returned empty-handed this month. They’re saying that the early winter has caused migration to begin weeks in advance.”

Ms Visser then advised everyone to ‘tighten their belts’ and to start rationing now as the weather would only get worse from this point on.

In lighter news, the Mayor also announced that this meant that ice skating season was starting earlier and that she was looking forward to judging this year’s figure skating championship.

In this example, the town running out of food is definitely more important than a skating contest. It’s still the journalist and the editor of the newspaper who decides what is put at the top of the story.

Think of a story you can tell based on the painting. Report what you decide are the facts and tell the most important information first.