Synthesizing Chávez’s Central Claim | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G7:M2A:U2:L7

Synthesizing Chávez’s Central Claim

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can analyze the development of a theme or central idea throughout the text. (RI.7.2)
  • I can analyze the organization of an informational text (including how the major sections contribute to the whole and to the development of the ideas). (RI.7.5)

Supporting Targets

  • I can analyze the structure of Chavez's speech and explain how each section contributes to his central claim.
  • I can identify basic rhetorical strategies and analyze how Chavez uses them to develop his claim.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor chart


AgendaTeaching Notes

1.  Opening

A.  Entry Task (10 minutes)

2.   Work Time

A.  Rhetoric Tool Matching Game (15 minutes)

B.  Analyzing Speech Structure: Paragraphs 28 and 29 (15 minutes)

3.   Closing and Assessment

A.  Exit Ticket: Self-Assessment (5 minutes)

4.   Homework

A.  Continue reading in your independent reading book for this unit.

  • In this final lesson about Cesar Chavez's Commonwealth Club Address, students notice the tools of rhetoric that Chavez uses to develop his claims in the second part of the speech. They do this with a physical movement activity. Review your expectations for how and when students move around the classroom just before starting the activity. Descriptions of what you should and should not hear and see will help students be successful.
  • Students also analyze the structure of the conclusion of the speech. Because they work independently on this activity, it can be a good opportunity for them to self-assess how well they are learning these reading comprehension skills.
  • Students more formally assess themselves on RI.7.5. Encourage them to seek additional help if they do not yet feel prepared for the assessment in Lesson 8.
  • Consider what structure you will use for the independent reading check-in scheduled for Lesson 8. As you review the homework with students, make sure they are clear about what they need to have completed beforehand and what they should bring to class that day.
  • Review: Commonwealth Club Address, Paragraphs 28 and 29.
  • Post: learning targets.


 subjugated, sham, hoax, exploit, surname


  • Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor chart (from Lesson 2)
  • Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor chart - teacher edition (from Lesson 2)
  • Rhetoric Tool Matching Game (one copy for every eight students)
  • Rhetoric Tool Matching Game (for teacher reference)
  • Text of Commonwealth Club Address by Cesar Chavez (students' annotated copies from Lessons 2-7)
  • Markers (three colors per student)
  • Exit ticket: Self-Assessment (one per student)


OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Entry Task (10 minutes)

  •  Ask students to take out their homework from Lesson 6 and then turn and talk with their partners about their answers to the last two questions of the Text-Dependent Questions for Paragraphs 23-26.
  • After students have had a few minutes to talk, debrief these two questions with the whole class.
  • When students have a clear understanding of the main claim of this section and how it relates to the central claim, direct them to take out their Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor charts and add this information. Write this on the class anchor chart so students have a model of strong work.
  • Ask students to notice that Paragraphs 22 and 27 are already done for them. They will not be reading these sections closely, but they will have a chance to read and analyze the conclusion today.
  • Next, briefly discuss the corrections to the Mid-Unit 2 Assessment, focusing on items with which many students struggled. Tell students they will continue to work on these skills; the End of Unit 2 Assessment also focuses on these standards. Encourage any students who struggled on this assignment to seek additional help.
  • Finally, direct students' attention to the learning targets today and remind them that the End of Unit 3 Assessment will focus on these.
  •  Following familiar and established routines can provide students with the comfort and confidence necessary for learning.


Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Rhetoric Tool Matching Game (15 minutes)

  • Congratulate students on their careful work to determine what Chavez said, and tell them that now they will pause to think about how he is saying this: What tools from the Rhetoric Toolbox has he been using to build his claims?
  • Distribute the tool notecards from the Rhetoric Tool Matching Game to half the class. Then distribute sentence strips from the game to the other half of the class. Ask students to read their cards and clarify any vocabulary. Consider defining subjugatedshamhoaxexploit, and surname. Tell students they need to walk around and find their match: So if they have a tool, they need to find an example of that tool. If they have a sentence strip, they need to find a tool card that describes the element of the Rhetoric Toolbox it contains. Once students have found their match, they need to sit down together to discuss their example. (The Rhetoric Tool Matching Game - for Teacher Reference has the correct matches.) They should label it on the right-hand side of their speech text and also talk about why Chavez used that particular strategy in that place.
  • Ask several groups to share their thinking. Provide positive feedback for careful thinking about why Chavez is using particular strategies and how they might be convincing to his audience. Prompt students to add notes to the right hand side of their speeches as their classmates share.
  • The Rhetoric Tool Matching Game discussion activity acts as a physical release. Ensuring that students have opportunities to incorporate physical movement in the classroom supports their academic success.


B. Analyzing Speech Structure: Paragraphs 28 and 29 (15 minutes)

  • Direct the students to their Text of Commonwealth Club Address by Cesar Chavez (students' annotated copies from Lessons 2-7). Tell them they have now reached the conclusion. Ask:

*   "What does a speaker usually do in the conclusion?"

  • List all the reasonable responses from students and then circle the three you want them to focus on. Prompt the class to focus on these three aspects of a conclusion:
  • It sums up the speaker's most important ideas. (Ask students to identify what ideas they think are most important to Chavez. The way working conditions changed? The boycott? The conditions of Chicanos?)
  • It returns to the central claim of the speech. (Remind students what it is in Chavez's speech. Reread it from the structure anchor chart. Will he say it the same way?)
  • It looks forward to the future. (Remind students to look for the signal word "will" as they read.)
  • Give each student three different colored markers. Ask them to reread the conclusion to themselves and mark when they see Chavez doing what they have just identified as the three things speakers do in the conclusion.
  • After 5 minutes, debrief students on the activity. They should add to their Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor charts for these paragraphs. Use the Commonwealth Club Address Structure anchor chart - teacher edition as you support students in this work.
  • Consider helping struggling learners in a small group during this exercise.


Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Exit Ticket: Self-Assessment (5 minutes)

  • Ask students to read the learning targets for today and answer the exit ticket: self-assessment. Encourage students who still have questions about structure to come for extra help outside of class time.
  • Developing self-assessment and reflection supports all learners, but research shows it supports struggling learners most.



  • Continue reading in your independent reading book for this unit. There will be a reading check-in tomorrow. Make sure you've met your goal and are prepared to talk about your book.


Note: Use the exit ticket to inform how you will open class tomorrow.

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