Sports Writing Lesson – Day Two

Prepared by: Jami Williams, Mexico High School, Mexico, Missouri

Students will create a style guide for sports writing that will serve as a classroom tool for future use.


  1. PowerPoint presentation
  2. Writing workshop


  1. PowerPoint Level 1 (Basic) understanding of the sports column
  2. Level 2 (Proficient) development of writing guidelines for sports


  1. Sports Writing PowerPoint 2
  2. Sports Writing guidelines graphic organizer
  3. AP Style Guide (available online at – online subscription is $26)


Steps to check for student understanding

  1. Teacher will do frequent comprehension checks in the form of Classroom Assessment Techniques (thumbs up, thumbs down; exit slip in the form of post-it note summary)
  2. Teachers may assess for participation.    


  1. Suggested bell ringer: If you could pick any beat to cover on a constant basis, what would it be?
  2. Teacher will present PowerPoint.
  3. Teacher will then introduce the idea of creating a local stylebook.
  4. Fill in the information that is already prompted for you – these are vital for ALL students to have access to. (If you also do yearbook, save these for yearbook)
  5. The AP Stylebook will have many regulations on sports reporting. It is your call as to how deep into this you want to go. Schools with daily coverage will want to nail down a definite style guide for all incidences. Schools with weekly or monthly coverage will not need to be as stringent as there will be plenty of time for editing.
  6. HOWEVER – It is a good idea for you to have a reference guide for students and for yourself handy. If it is not too much trouble (it will save you time in the long run, trust us!) make one guide for each sport and then one overarching guide for all sports that define how you are going to handle jersey numbers, last names when there is more than one person with that last name, etc.


  1. Exit slip: Should student athletes be drug tested regularly instead of randomly? Why or why not?