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TimesLedger Newspapers lend a hand to future reporters

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TimesLedger Newspapers is hoping to keep old-world media tradition alive by passing its editorial knowledge on to the younger generation.

The weekly newspaper chain has partnered for the second year with the PENCIL education nonprofit and about 25 students and advisers at Flushing’s IS 25 to help them create a top-notch school newspaper for their classmates to enjoy.

The paper, which was finalized last week, will go home with the school’s sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade pupils, who will read and view photographs written and taken by their fellow students on topics ranging from an exclusive interview with a new assistant principal to a profile on the school’s recent walk to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Dana Levenson, an eighth-grade English teacher at the school at 34-65 192nd St., said the program is a great learning experience for the young participants, who met with Levenson after school hours to work on the semi-annual publication, which is printed in the winter and the spring.

“We have students from all the grade levels and they come in after school and discuss how to write stories, how to go through the editing process and how to take photos that are attractive and that expand on the story ideas,” said Levenson, who ran the program. “I think it’s great. The kids are really into it. In terms of education, it builds on what they already know of the writing process and teaches them how writing can be used in a real-world situation.”

Roz Liston, editor of TimesLedger Newspapers, said she believes the partnership underscores the chain’s commitment to the Queens community, while also providing a valuable service for students..

“Bringing journalism to the next generation is an important goal for this paper and we’ve learned a lot as editors working with the students and their advisers,” Liston said.

The TimesLedger is part of Community Newspaper Group, which owns four other weekly chains covering Brooklyn and the Bronx. CNG is a division of News Corp.

Les Goodstein, senior vice president at News Corp., seconded Liston’s characterization of the relationship between the newspaper group and IS 25.

“This partnership is a wonderful opportunity for young, motivated students to learn about journalism from a team of talented news profession­als,” Goodstein said. “It is also a great chance for TimesLedger to give back to the communities it serves every week through its award-winning news coverage.””

TimesLedger editors worked with the students on developing stories, editing copy and laying out the paper. Goodstein talked to the students at length in the classroom about how advertising works at newspapers.

PENCIL brings business leaders and principals together to create unique educational opportunities for public school students.

Reach reporter Connor Adams Sheets by e-mail at csheets@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4538.

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CNG: Community Newspaper Group