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Using the Backwards Reporting Method

Suggested Level

Suggested Applications

Middle and High School History, Language Arts

Students will:
• Ask appropriate interview questions using the backwards reporting method for news article and Medal of Honor vignette.
• Peer revise interview questions.
• Make inferences about questions asked to obtain information.
• Gather facts by watching recipient’s vignette.

Medal of Honor Focus: Hiroshi Miyamura, Corporal, U.S. Army, Company H, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division / Korean War

Day 2
Introductory Activity:

Review the backwards-reporting method.

Whole Group Activity:
Distribute the “Rubric for Interview” and discuss expectations for the Interview.

Students can either choose a Medal of Honor recipient from a list or read the living history profiles
and choose one from there.

Small Group/Individual Activity:
Give ample time for students to view their chosen recipient’s video and gather information on their
recipient. (If students do not each have access to individual computers, set up time slots for scheduling
personal viewing times with students.)

Instruct students to write down facts about their recipient as they view. After viewing the short vignette,
role-play as a reporter, and use the “Interview Questions” sheet to write ten probing questions about the
recipient. Encourage students to take many notes, which will be useful when students write their news article.

Concluding Activity:
Once students finish composing ten questions, they should revise their questions and answers and finish
a draft for homework. Ask a peer to help revise.

Questions, revision work, interview questions guidelines sheet

“Interview Questions” guidelines sheet
Sample “Hiroshi Miyamura Interview”
Computer with DVD capability, projector, and screen
Sample magazine interviews and news articles
“Rubric for Interview”

Quote: "Go out into the world in peace; have courage; hold onto what is good; strengthen the faint-hearted; support the weak;
             help the suffering; honor all people."
- Carl L. Sitter, Marine Corps-Korean War

Download the lesson to view a Sample Interview / Backwards Reporting Method and Sample Interview Guidelines Sheet / Scoring Guide documents.

In Their Own - Hiroshi Miyamura