Mid-Unit Assessment Comparing and Contrasting Two Texts: Simulated Research | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G6:M4:U2:L9

Mid-Unit Assessment Comparing and Contrasting Two Texts: Simulated Research

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can compare how different authors present the same idea or event. (RI.6.9)
  • 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)
  • I can gather relevant information from a variety of sources. (W.6.8)
  • I can assess the credibility of each source I use. (W.6.8)
  • I can quote or paraphrase what others say about my topic while avoiding plagiarism. (W.6.8)
  • I can provide a list of sources I used to gather information in a bibliography. (W.6.8)
  • I can use a variety of strategies to determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases. (L.6.4)

    a. I can use context to determine the meaning of a word or phrase.

    b. I can use common Greek and Latin affixes (prefixes) and roots as clues to help me determine the meaning of a word.

    c. I can use resource materials (glossaries, dictionaries, thesauruses) to help me determine or clarify the pronunciation, meaning of key words and phrases, and parts of speech.

    d. I can check the accuracy of my guess about the meaning of a word or phrase by using resource materials.

Supporting Targets

  • I can gather relevant information from research materials.
  • I can assess the credibility of the article "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds."
  • I can compare and contrast the authors' presentation of ideas for "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" and "You Think You Have It Tough?"
  • I can use multiple strategies help me determine the meaning of a word.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Comparing and Contrasting Two Texts: Simulated Research 

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1.   Opening

     A.  Unpacking Learning Targets and Assessment Prompt (5 minutes)

2.   Work Time

     A.  Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Simulated Research Task: "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" (15 minutes)

     B.  Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Comparing and Contrasting Authors' Presentation (15 minutes)

     C.  Research Vocabulary: Using Multiple Strategies to Determine the Meaning of Words (5 minutes)

3.   Closing and Assessment

     A.  Reflecting on Learning Targets (5 minutes)

4.   Homework

  • At this point, students have completed their research from several sources, both print and digital. They have also been comparing and contrasting authors' presentations of ideas, specifically how the author introduces the idea, the claim, what type of evidence the author uses, and how the author uses other text features.
  • Thus, in this mid-unit assessment, students are asked to read two informational articles: "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" and "You Think You Have It Tough?" After reading "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds," students are asked to complete a "simulated research" page identical to a page in their researcher's notebooks.
  • This on-demand assessment is meant to assess students' ability to do independent research. However, students' researcher's notebooks should be referenced when assessing students' ability to conduct an ongoing research project. 
  • After reading "You Think You Have It Tough?" students are asked to compare and contrast these two authors' presentations of malaria and the use of DDT. Students will use the Comparing and Contrasting Authors' Presentation graphic organizer identical to the one they have been using throughout this unit
  • Finally, students will complete a Research Vocabulary graphic organizer identical to the one they've used since the beginning of this unit. Students are invited to complete the process of giving an initial idea for a word's definition using context clues and/or root words and affixes, then confirming or revising their definition using resource materials such as a dictionary.
  • Although the author of "You Think You Have It Tough?" does not specifically mention the use of DDT in the article, at this point in the module, students should be able to make the connection between mosquitoes and malaria and the use of DDT.
  • The article "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" is a high Lexile in qualitative measures. However, it is appropriate to this task because by now students should be familiar with much of the vocabulary that makes this a complex text.
  • Sample student responses are provided in the supporting materials. These responses are just examples; actual student responses will vary. 
  • In advance: Read the articles used in this mid-unit assessment (see supporting materials). Also read the sample student response for the simulated research page and comparing authors' presentations to familiarize yourself with the expectations for students.
  • Be sure students have access to their Credibility Checklist, which they have been using throughout their research. This will be necessary for completing the simulated research page.
  • Be sure students have access to a resource material, such as a print or online dictionary, to determine word meanings.
  • Post: Learning targets; Mid-Unit 2 Assessment prompt.

Vocabulary

compare, contrast

Opening

Opening

A. Unpacking Learning Targets and Assessment Prompt (5 minutes)

  • In advance, display and distribute the Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Comparing and Contrasting Two Texts: Simulated Research. Tell students:

* "Today you will be reading two articles: 'DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds' and 'You Think You Have It Tough?' Both of these are informational articles about mosquitoes, malaria, and DDT.

* "After reading the first article, 'DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds,' complete a Simulated Research graphic organizer identical to the ones you have been completing in your researcher's notebooks.

* "After reading the second article, 'You Think You Have It Tough?', complete a Comparing and Contrasting Authors' Presentations graphic organizer identical to the one you have used in previous lessons."

* "Finally, for each word on the Research Vocabulary: Using Multiple Strategies to Determine the Meaning of Words graphic organizer, use a strategy such as context clues or root words and affixes to make an initial determination for the word's meaning. Then use a resource material, such as a dictionary, to confirm or revise that meaning."

  • Invite students to read along as you read aloud the mid-unit assessment prompt. Ask students to Think-Pair-Share:

* "Based on this prompt, describe to a partner, in your own words, what you think you will be doing in your assessment today."

  • Confirm for students that they will be reading two articles today. They will be completing graphic organizers and note-taking tools identical to the ones they have been using throughout their research process.
  • Ask:

* "Are there any clarifying questions about this prompt?"

  • Give students the opportunity to ask any questions about the prompt or the assessment.
  • Tell students the purpose of this assessment is to give them the opportunity to show their mastery of learning targets that they have been working on for the last couple of weeks. Tell students that you would like to review those learning targets now. 
  • Read aloud, or invite a student to read aloud, today's learning targets:

* "I can gather relevant information from research materials."

* "I can assess the credibility of the article 'DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds.'"

* "I can compare and contrast the authors' presentation of ideas for 'DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds' and 'You Think You Have It Tough?'"

* "I can use multiple strategies help me determine the meaning of a word."

  • Ask:

* "Looking at these learning targets, and the assessment prompt, how do you think you will be showing your mastery of the learning targets?"

  • Listen for example such as: "We'll read the article and pretend like we're doing it for research, so we'll fill in our researcher's notebook" and "We'll have to decide if the article we read is credible using our Credibility Checklist" and "We'll have figure out the meaning of new words using the strategies we have learned."

Work Time

Work Time

A. Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Simulated Research Task: "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" 
(15 minutes)

  • Distribute the informational article "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds" and the Simulated Research graphic organizer to each student.
  • Remind students that, as always, they will need to read all, or parts of, this article multiple times to truly find meaning in it. The first time they'll read to get the overall flow; the second time they should begin to collect the necessary information and evidence they need to complete the graphic organizer.
  • Point out that students will use a Credibility Checklist exactly like the one they've used in previous lessons.
  • Tell students they will return to this article once more for the second part of this assessment in which they compare and contrast authors' presentations. They can start thinking about how this article is introduced, what claim is made, what kinds of evidence the author includes, and how the author uses (or does not use) additional text features.
  • Give students 15 minutes to read this article and complete the graphic organizer. Circulate and support students as they work, specifically refocusing students who may become distracted and asking prompting questions of students who get stuck. 

B. Mid-Unit 2 Assessment: Comparing and Contrasting Authors' Presentations (15 minutes)

  • After 15 minutes, begin to distribute the article "You Think You Have It Tough?" and the Comparing and Contrasting Authors' Presentations graphic organizer.
  • Once these are distributed, pause students in their work. Assure them that they will have additional time to complete what they are working on, but you would like to introduce them to the second part of their task.
  • Tell them that in the second part of this assessment, they will be reading a new article. Students will not have to complete the simulated research task, however. Their focus will be on comparing this author's presentation of ideas (malaria, mosquitoes, and DDT) with that of the article they just completed.
  • Remind students of the different ways they learned to analyze an author's presentation: by thinking about how the author introduces the ideas, what types of evidence the author uses, and how (or if) the author uses additional text features.
  • Remind students that by thinking of each of these things individually, they can describe "overall" how the author has presented the event.
  • Finally, remind students that they have practiced the skill of thinking about which author is more effective in presenting information or arguing their side of something. Today, they will continue to show their mastery of that skill.
  • Tell students they will have the next 15 minutes to read this second article, and then complete the Comparing Authors' Presentation graphic organizer.
  • Circulate and support students as they work. Specifically, some students will be helped by prompting questions and the ability to "verbally rehearse" their answer with you before writing it down. 

C. Research Vocabulary: Using Multiple Strategies to Determine the Meaning of Words (5 minutes)

  • After 15 minutes, begin to distribute the Research Vocabulary: Using Multiple Strategies to Determine the Meaning of Words graphic organizer.
  • Pause students in their work. Again, tell them that if they need additional time, it will be provided to them, but you would like to introduce them to the final piece of this assessment.
  • Review the graphic organizer with students. Tell them that this graphic organizer is identical to the one they have been using in their own research, and they should use it in the exact same way they have been practicing.
  • Point out to students that for the purposes of this assessment, the words they'll work with have been chosen for them. Point out that all of the words come from their reading, specifically the article "DDT Spray Scares Mosquitoes Away, Study Finds."
  • Remind students of the multiple strategies they have been practicing: using context clues, using root words and affixes, and using resource materials such as a dictionary. Tell students they should look closely at the word, and its context, to determine their strategy.
  • Point out to students that dictionaries have been made available to them. These dictionaries can be used to help them confirm or revise their initial determination of the words' meanings.
  • Give students 5 minutes to complete the vocabulary section of the assessment. 

Closing & Assessments

Closing

A. Reflecting on Learning Targets (5 minutes)

  • Ask students to turn and talk:

 * "Look back at today's learning targets. What is one area that you feel is a  'star' for you? What is one area that you'd call a 'step,' or an area in which you need more work?"

  • As time permits, invite volunteers to share their thoughts whole group.

Homework

Homework
  • None

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