Using newspapers in class is a very good idea. The language is authentic, and students should get used to reading newspapers as that's one easy way of continuing their studies outside class.
To make reading newspaper articles more communicative, one thing you can do is cut up the newspaper headline into how ever many words are in it, and give those to groups of three or four students to put together. Explain to them that there may be more than one way of putting the headline together. You don't care how they do it, as long as it's accurate and make sense. Hell, even if it doesn't make sense, as long as it's accurate, it'll be fine.
Once that's done, put the headline on the board and try to get students to predict what the story will be about. Brainstorm a list of ideas onto the board and then give students the reading passage and see who can identify the correct summary first.
By doing all this, you are creating interest in the reading passage, and students will then be less daunted and bored by the prospect of reading.
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Angus Savory 18-08-2011