As part of a unit on writing feature stories, I have my students practice interviewing by working in groups of three. Student A interviews student B, B interviews C, and C interviews A on activities and interests. They must prepare at least five questions and get direct quotes for answers. The students then write short feature stories, which include the quotes, and read them to the class. The students enjoy hearing the stories about their classmates.
After this exercise, the students interview people outside of class and write longer feature stories. Some of the best writing is given to the editor of the local newspaper for consideration for publication.