Mid-Unit Assessment: Research | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G6:M2B:U1:L8

Mid-Unit Assessment: Research

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can cite text-based evidence to support an analysis of informational text. (RI.6.1)
  • I can determine the main idea of an informational text based on details in the text. (RI.6.2)
  • I can summarize an informational text using only information from the text. (RI.6.2)
  • I can use a variety of strategies to determine word meaning in informational texts. (RI.6.4)
  • I can analyze how a particular sentence, paragraph, chapter, or section fits in and contributes to the development of ideas in a text. (RI.6.5)
  • I can conduct short research projects to answer a question. (W.6.7)
  • I can use several sources in my research. (W.6.7)
  • I can refocus or refine my question when appropriate. (W.6.7)

Supporting Targets

  • I can determine the meaning of words and phrases in an excerpt of text.
  • I can explain how a section of text contributes to the meaning of the whole text.
  • I can identify details in texts that answer my research question.
  • I can identify the main idea of a text and summarize the relevant details for my research.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research 


AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening

A. Reviewing Learning Targets (2 minutes)

2. Work Time

A. Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research (40 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment

A. Debrief (3 minutes)

4. Homework

A. None.

  • The Mid-Unit 1 Assessment has two parts. In Part 1, students read an excerpt of text to answer questions about word and phrase meaning and to summarize the text. In the second part of the assessment, students research to answer a focus question: "What adversity did people face as a result of the Black Death?"
  • Students should already be familiar with the research texts, as they will have read them for homework.
  • Assess student responses on the mid-unit assessment using the Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research Part 1 (answers, for teacher reference) and the Grade 6 Two-Point Rubric--Short Response.
  • Some of the assessment research texts have been selected because they are age-appropriate, compelling and accessible and won't require students to have much additional reading support to complete their research, rather than because they come from credible sources.
  • In advance: Review Fist to Five and Checking for Understanding techniques (see Appendix).
  • Post: Learning targets.


None, as this is an assessment lesson


  • Mid-Unit 1 Assessment research texts 1, 2 and 3 (from Lesson 7)
  • Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research (one per student)
  • Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research (answers, for teacher reference)
  • Grade 6 Two-Point Rubric--Short Response (for teacher reference)


OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Reviewing Learning Targets (2 minutes)

  • Read the learning targets aloud as students follow along silently:

* "I can determine the meaning of words and phrases in an excerpt of text."

* "I can explain how a section of text contributes to the meaning of the whole text."

* "I can identify details in texts that answer my research question."

* "I can identify the main idea of a text and summarize the relevant details for my research."

  • Remind students that they have seen all of these learning targets in lessons in the first half of this unit. Tell them that in this lesson, they will complete a mid-unit assessment, which will involve further research of the Middle Ages, specifically the Black Death. Do not provide them with any details, as this could reveal some of the answers on the mid-unit assessment.
  • Learning targets are a research-based strategy that helps all students, especially challenged learners.
  • Posting learning targets allows students to reference them throughout the lesson to check their understanding. The learning targets also provide a reminder to students and teachers about the intended learning behind a given lesson or activity.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A.Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research (40 minutes)

  • Remind them that they read the assessment research texts for homework. Ask them to get all three texts out:

-    Mid-Unit 1 Assessment Text 1: The Plague

-    Mid-Unit 1 Assessment Text 2: "Disasters and Disease." The City

-    Mid-Unit 1 Assessment Text 3: Bubonic Plague

  • Distribute Mid-Unit 1 Assessment: Research.
  • Invite students to read silently in their heads as you read the directions and questions aloud on each part of the assessment.
  • Invite students to ask questions about the process and what is expected of them, but take care to avoid revealing any of the answers on the assessment.
  • Remind the class that because this is an assessment, it is to be completed independently. However, if students need assistance, they should raise their hand to speak with a teacher.
  • Circulate and support students as they work. During an assessment, your prompting should be minimal. 
  • For some students, this assessment may require more than the 40 minutes allotted. Consider providing time over multiple days if necessary.
  • If students receive accommodations for assessments, communicate with the cooperating service providers regarding the practices of instruction in use during this study as well as the goals of the assessment. 

Closing & Assessments


A. Debrief (3 minutes)

  • Review the Fist to Five checking for understanding technique as needed.
  • Invite students to show a fist to five for each of the learning targets to indicate how well they think they have achieved them in this part of the mid-unit assessment.


  • None

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