End of Unit 2 Assessment, Part 1: Drafting the Argument Essay | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G8:M2B:U2:L15

End of Unit 2 Assessment, Part 1: Drafting the Argument Essay

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence. (W.9.1)
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (W.8.4)
  • I can select evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.8.9)

Supporting Targets

  • I can write an organized argument essay about A Midsummer Night's Dream.
  • In my essay, I can support my claim with reasons, details, and quotes from the play.
  • In my essay, I can explain how the details develop the reasons that support my claim.
  • In my essay, I can acknowledge and respond to a counterclaim.

Ongoing Assessment

  • A Midsummer Night's Dream essay planner (from homework)
  • Essay draft

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1.  Opening

     A.  Reviewing Learning Targets (3 minutes)

2.  Work Time 

     A.  Drafting the Essay (40 minutes)

3.  Closing and Assessment

     A.  Collect Essay Drafts (2 minutes)

4.  Homework

     A.  QuickWrite: Argue why you believe the characters you chose are the most relevant examples of "the possibility of controlling others' actions."

     B.  Continue your independent reading.

  • In this lesson, students write the draft of their essay about Shakespeare making the case that it is not possible to control another person. In the previous four lessons, students have shaped their arguments, planned their essays, and critiqued one another's work. At this point, students need time to craft their essay.
  • Consider posting a list of the resources to help students write their essays. The list includes:

-   Evidence of Control note-catchers

-   Essay planners

-   Supporting Evidence-Based Claims graphic organizers

-   Structured notes

  • This lesson is written assuming students will use computers to draft the essays to make later revisions easier.
  • Consider the setup of your classroom if you are using laptops; since students can distract themselves on computers, think about positioning the desks so it's easy to scan the screens throughout the lesson.
  • If your students are not familiar with expectations about computer use in the classroom, explain them at the beginning of Work Time A.
  • Be sure to think about how students will submit their drafts at the end of class: printing, saving to a server, emailing, etc.
  • If using computers is not possible in your classroom, consider giving students more time to handwrite their essays.
  • Because students will produce this essay draft independently, it is used as an assessment for "Claim and Reasons" and "Command of Evidence" on the argument rubric. Return the essay drafts with feedback in Lesson 18. Be sure to give feedback on the "Coherence, Style, and Organization" row and the "Command of Conventions" row of the rubric so students can make those revisions in Lesson 18.
  • Students complete an Exit Ticket at the end of this lesson.  They will list their three favorite characters, which will serve as information to allow for assigning a character to students and organizing character groups for the next lesson.
  • See the teaching note at the end of this lesson regarding the possibility of launching independent reading at this point in Module 2 to have more time to read and give feedback on students' draft essays.
  • Post: Learning targets.

Vocabulary

argument

Materials

  • Computers
  • Essay Planner (lesson 13)
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream (book; one per student)
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream Argument Rubric (from Lesson 13)
  • Exit Ticket
  • Sample student essay
  • Optional: Launching Independent Reading in Grades 6-8: Sample Plan (stand-alone document on EngageNY.org), if Independent Reading was not launched in Lesson 10.

Opening

Opening

A. Reviewing Learning Targets (3 minutes) 

  • Assign computers and invite students to get out their Essay Planners and A Midsummer Night's Dream text.  
  • Read the learning targets:

*   "I can write an organized argument essay about A Midsummer Night's Dream."

*   "In my essay, I can support my claim with reasons, details, and quotes from the play."

*   "In my essay, I can explain how the details develop the reasons that support my claim."

*   "In my essay, I can acknowledge and respond to a counterclaim."

  • Remind students that these learning targets build on the work they have been doing in the past four lessons, as well as work they did in Module 1. 

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Drafting the Essay (40 minutes)

Remind students of the following:

-   Use the ideas and evidence in your planners to write your essay drafts.

-   You will turn in your drafts at the end of the class.

-   You will have a chance to revise for conventions after you get your first draft back.

  • Emphasize the importance of saving their work often as they are typing. Let them know in what form (email, printed, saved to server, etc.) they will turn in their draft at the end of the class.
  • As students work, circulate around the room. Because this is an assessment, students should work independently.
  • Continue to circulate, supporting students when needed or when their hands are raised.
  • When a few minutes remain, remind students to save their work.
  • One of the goals of the scaffolding in the previous lessons is to support all students in writing their essays, including SPED and ELL students. As much as possible, this draft should be done independently. However, if it is appropriate for some students to receive more support, there is space during Work Time A.  
  • In order to give more support, consider:

-   Prompting them to look at their essay planner to remind them of their claim and/or the evidence they gathered.

-   Asking questions like: "How does that evidence support your claim?" or "How are those ideas connected?"

-   Reminding them of the resources they have available to help them. 

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Collect Essay Drafts and Exit Ticket (2 minutes)

  • Give students specific positive praise for behaviors or thinking you noticed during class. Emphasize ways in which they show stamina as writers, and specific examples of students who have strong insights about the theme of control in the play.
  • Tell students you look forward to reading their drafts. Collect students' drafts and their associated planning work: Supporting Evidence-Based Claims sheets and essay planners.
  • Distribute the Exit Ticket and have students complete it before they leave.  Explain that you are collecting this information from them in order to prepare for the final performance.
  • Preview homework. 
  • Consider allowing SPED and ELL students more time to complete their draft. 

Homework

Homework
  • QuickWrite: Argue why you believe the characters you chose are the most relevant examples of "the possibility of controlling others' actions."
  • Continue your independent reading.

Note: 

  • Be prepared by Lesson 18 to return the essay drafts with feedback and the rubric. 
  • For assessment purposes, focus on just the top two rows of the rubric, but also give feedback on the Coherence, Organization, and Style and Control of Conventions sections for students to revise in Lesson 18. Specifically, keep an eye out for common organization or convention mistakes in the essays. You can address one of these common errors in a mini lesson in Lesson 18 when students revise. 

Lessons 16 and 17 begin the work of Unit 3 and build toward the Character Confession Narrative performance task (this also allows time for you to review essays and give feedback by Lesson 18). If you need additional time to review student work before the revision lesson, consider using a day or two between Lesson 15 and Lesson 18 to launch the independent reading routine. This routine is explained more fully in a supporting document Launching Independent Reading in Grades 6-8: Sample Plan (stand-alone document on EngageNY.org). However, make sure students return to their essays relatively soon; a gap of more than a few days will make it harder for them to revise successfully.

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