An International Preschool-Grade 12 Academy 

GEMS Students Learn from StoryCorps

GEMS World Academy – Chicago students make use of the city of Chicago’s resources to learn from various experts in their fields. A Field Study to StoryCorps helped first-grade students learn the answer to one big question: What makes a good interview?
The students are currently exploring the diversity of family traditions and have begun interviewing their own family members.
StoryCorps’ mission is to provide people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share and preserve the stories of our lives. They teach the value of listening and the understanding that everyone’s story matters. They also create an invaluable archive for future generations.
While at StoryCorps headquarters within the historic Chicago Cultural Center, students met with producers Francesco and Alicia in order to craft more thoughtful interview questions to ask their family visitors. Asking questions that have simple “yes” or “no” answers don’t offer much information. It’s better to ask the “W” questions, like who, what, where, why, when.
Students had fun working together to brainstorm questions, and got some ideas after watching animations that showcase one person interviewing another. They even got a surprise at the end of the visit by going inside a real recording booth and interacting with the audio equipment!
Some of the questions that students created included:
  • What do you like about your tradition?
  • When was the first time you did your tradition?
  • Why do you do your tradition?
  • What special foods are at your tradition?
  • How do you do your tradition?
For a photo album of the field study, please head to the GEMS World Academy-Chicago facebook page.


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