~Proud Teacher of English 3, Rebecca Nelson
What We've Been Up To Lately
Earlier this month, students defined what it means to be an American. Writing conferences have been held before school, during school, and after school this week and will be carrying over into next week. After reviewing students work, I determined the most frequent writing errors and assigned students to research one aspect of writing, create a presentation and quiz, and present their research to the class. Today was the last day of presentations, and students wrote statements of what they will improve for their next essay.
Claim, Evidence, & Rule
Students worked in investigative teams to solve a murder mystery! This activity required students to state a claim about the case, identify evidence from a text and image, and provide a rule/warrant in order to prepare for them argumentative writing.
Students practiced the elements of argumentative writing after reading the article, "Why Flamin' Hot Cheetos Are Sending Kids to the ER". They had to select whether Illinois schools should ban the snacks, but then they were required to argue the opposite side. This is one example of collaborative writing completed in class.
Claim, Evidence, & Rule
What's Coming Up Next
Unit One, Embedded Assessment Two
Your assignment is to synthesize at least three to five sources and your own observations to defend, challenge, or qualify the statement that “America still provides access to the American Dream.” This question requires you to integrate a variety of sources (three to five) into a coherent, well-written argumentative essay. Be sure to refer to the sources and employ your own observations to support your position. Your argument should be central; the sources and your observations should support this argument.
Unit Two: The Power of Persuasion
*Students will need a copy of The Crucible by Arthur Miller. Copies can be purchased or rented through the school's LRC.
In this unit, students explore the idea of the American Dream and America’s commitment to freedom of speech. Two essential questions focus their attention on the skills and knowledge presented and assessed in the unit:
· How can artistic expression advance social commentary?
· How are the components of rhetoric applied to the creation and delivery of persuasive speeches?
Students answer these questions through the activities and assessments in the unit.
Two performance-based tasks, called Embedded Assessments, give students an opportunity to demonstrate their new learning in the skills of presentation and argumentation. Specifically,
· Embedded Assessment 1 asks students to present an original dramatic script about a societal conflict.
· Embedded Assessment 2 asks students to write a speech arguing a position and using a variety of rhetorical appeals.
In both cases, students demonstrate their ability to critically read and effectively use textual evidence.
Developing Skills and Knowledge for the Assessments
Throughout the unit, students engage in activities in which they use strategies such as marking the text and jigsaw to practice the important skills of close reading, responding to the text, and sharing information. Students analyze and respond to a variety of texts such as “Speech to the Virginia Convention” by Patrick Henry and the drama The Crucible by Arthur Miller.
Students’ vocabulary study concentrates on academic vocabulary of performing and argumentation, such as vocal delivery, historical context, and rhetorical context, and vocabulary specific to literary study such as subtext, dramatic irony, and syntax.
Helping Your Child
Students should be practicing every day in class for their upcoming performance on the Embedded Assessment. Help your child reflect on and focus his or her learning by asking the following questions:
· What did you learn today? What texts did you read, discuss, and respond to in writing? What strategies did you use during your reading, discussing, and writing?
· What did you learn today that will help you succeed on the upcoming Embedded Assessment? What do you still need to practice?
You may also find it helpful to read through the Embedded Assessments (particularly the Scoring Guides) and to note the Learning Targets that are located at the beginning of each unit activity.
Hyde - Free Instrumentals