Informational Essay Planning: Analyzing and Selecting Evidence | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G8:M3B:U2:L15

Informational Essay Planning: Analyzing and Selecting Evidence

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can use evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.8.9)
  • I can analyze the development of a theme or a central idea throughout the text (including its relationship to supporting ideas). (RI.8.2)

Supporting Targets

  • I can explain the end of unit assessment essay prompt.
  • I can explain ways that various mediums shaped the story of the Little Rock Nine.

Ongoing Assessment

  • A Mighty Long Way structured notes, Chapter 15, pages 239-254 (from homework)
  • Gathering Evidence note-catcher

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1.  Opening

     A.  Engaging the Reader: Homework Focus Question (2 minutes)

     B.  Reviewing Learning Targets (1 minute)

2.  Work Time

     A.  Analyzing Evidence: Coding and Selecting the Strongest Evidence (35 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment

     A. Exit Ticket (5 minutes)

     B.  Previewing Homework (2 minutes)

4.  Homework

     A.  Select the strongest evidence to use in your essay.

  • In this lesson, students continue to address the question of how the use of various types of mediums contributed to shaping the story of the Little Rock Nine. They analyze the evidence they have collected on their Gathering Evidence note-catchers and select the strongest evidence to include in their essays.
  • To help students select the strongest evidence to answer this essay prompt, create a Characteristics of Strong Evidence" anchor chart: a T-chart with the left side titled, "Illuminated Events" and the right side titled, "Inaccurate or Incomplete Events."
  • In advance:

-   Prepare Characteristics of Strong Evidence anchor chart (as described above).

-   Review Written Conversation protocol (see Appendix).

  • Post: Learning targets.

Vocabulary

None.

Materials

  • End of Unit 2 Assessment: Informational Essay Prompt (from Lesson 7; one per student and one to display)
  • Document camera
  • Gathering Evidence note-catcher (begun in Lesson 7; one to display)
  • Two different colored pencils (one pair per student)
  • Gathering Evidence Note-catcher Teacher's Guide (from Lesson 7)
  • Characteristics of Strong Evidence anchor chart (new; teacher created; see Teaching Notes)
  • Exit ticket (one per student)

Opening

Opening

A. Engaging the Reader: Homework Focus Question (2 minutes)

  • Have students join their Washington, D.C. discussion partners and share their responses to the focus question from A Mighty Long Way structured notes, Chapter 15, pages 239-254 from homework.
  • Cold call on student pairs to respond, listen for students to say something like:

-   "This chapter documents the healing that Carlotta was finally able to begin."

-   "The story becoming public through film and a book forces Carlotta to begin sharing her story with her family and friends, many of whom did not even know about her past role in the civil rights movement."

-   "She also realizes that in the publications of the story, her perspective was not necessarily portrayed because she turned down the opportunity to be interviewed by the writer."

-   "Although reluctant, she begins doing speaking engagements and also finds that she has something important to share even though it brings up emotions she didn't want to feel and face."

-   "Finally, she actually becomes the spokeswoman for the Little Rock Nine and works to find ongoing purpose in the events at Central High. She finds her voice and uses it."

B. Reviewing Learning Targets (1 minute)

  • Read today's learning targets aloud as students follow along silently:

*   "I can explain the end of unit assessment essay prompt."

*   "I can explain ways that various mediums shaped the story of the Little Rock Nine."

  • Explain that today students will sort through all of the textual evidence they've gathered for writing their informational essays.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Analyzing Evidence: Coding and Selecting the Strongest Evidence (35 minutes)

  • Distribute and display the End of Unit 2 Assessment: Informational Essay Prompt (from Lesson 7) using the document camera. Read the prompt aloud while students follow along silently. Ask students to recall what they need to do to write the informational essay.
  • Cold call on students and listen for:

-   "I need to have evidence of how various uses of mediums illuminated events in the Little Rock Nine story."

-   "I need to have evidence of how various mediums provided an incomplete or inaccurate pictures of the events in the Little Rock Nine story."

-   "I need to use the strongest evidence from the text."

  • Clarify as needed.
  • Have students take out the Gathering Evidence note-catchers they began in Lesson 7. Display a copy on the document camera.
  • Explain to students that they will use their Gathering Evidence note-catcher and sift through their notes to see which evidence they would like to use in their essay.
  • Distribute two different colored pencils to each student. Draw students' attention to the two questions in the Explanation of Evidence column on the note-catcher. They should circle the question, "How did it illuminate events?" in one color and "How did it give an incomplete or inaccurate picture of events?" with the other color.
  • Explain to students that they are going to color code the evidence throughout their note-catchers to match the two questions. They should circle or underline the strongest evidence that illuminates events with the corresponding color, and do likewise for the strongest evidence that paints an incomplete or inaccurate picture of events.
  • Display the Gathering Evidence Note-catcher Teacher's Guide, and model this process using the first few pieces of evidence on the displayed note-catcher.
  • Invite students to work with their Washington, D.C. partners to code their note-catchers.

*   Once students have coded the evidence, they will need to decide which pieces of evidence are the strongest. Ask:

*   "What would make a strong piece of evidence for mediums that illuminated events in this essay?

  • Invite students to turn and talk and cold call on student pairs to respond.
  • Capture students' answers on the Characteristics of Strong Evidence anchor chart (see Teaching Notes). Listen for students to identify an example of when a medium captured the story completely and in the right way, or an example of when a medium accurately showed or informed the public what was really going on. Ask:

*   "What would make a strong piece of evidence for mediums that gave an inaccurate or incomplete picture of events?"

  • Invite students to turn and talk and cold call on student pairs to add to the anchor chart. Listen for students to identify an example that clearly shows that the medium missed part of the story or left out part of the story so that the public was left with an incomplete or wrong story in their minds.
  • When students have finished, ask them to reevaluate the strongest evidence they have selected, and then to talk with their partners about which evidence they think provides the strongest evidence to answer the essay prompt and why.
  • When reviewing graphic organizers or recording forms, consider using a document camera to display the document for students who struggle with auditory processing.

Closing & Assessments

Closing

A. Exit Ticket (5 minutes)

  • Distribute the exit ticket. Have each student pick one of the strongest pieces of evidence they selected for illuminating events and one of the strongest pieces of evidence they selected for an inaccurate or incomplete picture of events, and answer the questions on the exit ticket.  
  • Collect the exit ticket so that you may review student responses and address any concerns in the next lesson.

B. Previewing Homework (2 minutes)

  • Tell students that for homework they will look back at their color-coded Gathering Evidence note-catchers and choose at least four strong pieces of evidence to use in their essays (two about how various mediums illuminated events and two about how various mediums may have provided inaccurate or incomplete information).
  • Tell students that they will begin planning their essays in the next class, so it will be important that they have chosen the strongest evidence to include.

Homework

Homework
  • Select the strongest evidence to use in your essay.

Note: Use the responses from the exit ticket to determine if more time is needed for selecting the strongest evidence and adjust plans accordingly.

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