Magical News: An AI-powered tool for teaching students about current events

Tristrum Tuttle
3 min readJan 30, 2024


While working on Mighty News, a simple search engine for student-friendly news websites, my co-founder Dan and I began noticing a new problem: there are not many good sources for news for students. In discussions with teachers, we discovered that a lot of teachers rely on just a handful of sites for student-friendly news: CNN10, Newsela, Flocabulary and a few others. These student-friendly news sources are great, but limited in their scope and format. Finding news for students, especially for local news and events, is still a challenge. To help tackle this challenge, I built

Magical News is an AI-powered web app educators can use to generate grade level-specific teaching materials for any news article.

Simply copy and paste in a URL, or copy and paste in a news article’s text directly, select a grade level, and click “Rewrite” to generate a revision of the article for the selected grade level. After re-writing the article, you can also generate vocabulary lists, comprehension questions, and essay prompts.

When generating an essay prompt, you can provide a theme to connect the essay back to relevant classroom topics.

After you have generated all the materials you are interested in, select the checkbox next to each generated essay prompt, question or vocabulary term that you want to include in your worksheet and click “Save Lesson.”

“Save Lesson” takes all the checked materials and compiles them into a ready-to-use worksheet with a few configurable options:

  1. Use Original Article: Checking this box will include the original article instead of the AI-generated version at the top of the lesson. This may be helpful if you want your students to read the original text, and just use the questions, vocabulary definitions and essay prompts that were generated.
  2. Use Worksheet Layout: Checking this box replaces definitions, answers and examples with a blank space for students to write in their own responses. It also lets you select an “essay length” to specify how long the essay responses should be.
  3. Download PDF: This button will take you to a print preview screen where you can click “Save as PDF” to save and print your generated lesson.
  4. Copy to Clipboard: This button copies the lesson so that you can paste it into a Google Doc, Microsoft Word, or other document with a right click + paste (or using the keyboard shortcut to paste).

Read about how I built this web app using Vue 3 and AWS Amplify here.

Big shout out to my co-founder Dan Buck for collaborating on these news projects, to my lovely and incredible wife Monica for providing support and feedback on this article, and my mom for motivating me to fully launch this project up after testing out the demo.