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grade ELA periods 1,2 and 7,8


Persuasive Molasses flood unit


Carla Bamesberger
Geoff Shroeder


Day 1, 2:
Cite several pieces of textual evidence to support analysis of
what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from
the text. (CCSS: RL.7.1)
Determine two or more central ideas in a text and analyze their
development over the course of the text; provide an objective
summary of the text. (CCSS: RI.7.2)
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-
meaning words and phrases based on grade 7 reading and
content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies. (CCSS:
Use context (e.g., the overall meaning of a sentence or
paragraph; a words position or function in a sentence) as a
clue to the meaning of a word or phrase. (CCSS: L.7.4a)
Use common, grade-appropriate Greek or Latin affixes and
roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., belligerent,
bellicose, rebel). (CCSS: L.7.4b)
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word
relationships, and nuances in word meanings. (CCCS: L.7.5)
Day 3, 4, 5:
Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions
(one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners
on grade 7 topics, texts, and issues, building on others ideas
and expressing their own clearly. (CCSS: SL.7.1)
Come to discussions prepared, having read or researched
material under study; explicitly draw on that preparation by
referring to evidence on the topic, text, or issue to probe and
reflect on ideas under discussion. (CCSS: SL.7.1a)
Pose questions that elicit elaboration and respond to others
questions and comments with relevant observations and ideas
that bring the discussion back on topic as needed. (CCSS:
Delineate a speakers argument and specific claims, evaluating
the soundness of the reasoning and the relevance and
sufficiency of the evidence. (CCSS: SL.7.3)

Day 6-10
Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and
relevant evidence. (CCSS: W.7.1)
Support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant evidence,
using accurate, credible sources and demonstrating an
understanding of the topic or text. (CCSS: W.7.1b)
Establish and maintain a formal style. (CCSS: W.7.1d)
Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from
and supports the argument presented. (CCSS: W.7.1e)
Introduce a topic clearly, previewing what is to follow;
organize ideas, concepts, and information, using strategies
such as definition, classification, comparison/contrast, and
cause/effect; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g.,
charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding
comprehension. (CCSS: W.7.2a)
Develop the topic with relevant facts, definitions, concrete
details, quotations, or other information and examples. (CCSS:

Day 1
I will use close reading strategies (annotation) to help me read and
gain an understanding of the Boston Flood article

Read he article, understand the articles content.

Scope Magazine
Four-corners signs
Vocab handouts
Annotation pens (blue, black, red)


10 days

90 minutes (Blue indicates times when 7/8 has something else to
finish first)


15 mins Grammar
15 mins Vocab quiz
15 mins Game day (Friday makeup)

10mins 4-corners activity
-what is [community] advocacy? (Persuasion= opinion+fact)
-Lets find out. Explain 4-corners: Strongly Agree, Mildly Agree,
Mildly Disagree, Strongly Disagree.
Chocolate is better than vanilla (no facts, just opinion)
Dogs are better than cats. (opinions and facts, but not community
Webber middle school students should wear uniforms (opinion,
facts, impacts a community).
So what does it mean to be an advocate Vs. having a strong opinion?

Practice (I):

3-5 mins each: read Boston Flood Article section by section out loud.
Circle clunks in each section. Underline or exclamation points in each
(for 3 mins at the beginning, when introducing this article, show class
molasses and let them taste it)


3-6 mins each: (between reading sections )Use fix-up strategies with a
partner. Discuss clunks and fix-up strategies. What was this section
about? What did you find interesting? Any points of confusion?
(repeat this and reading for all 4 sections) [also, have one big question
per section, which I will not only ask, but have projected on smart
board. See Questioning strategies below for this content)

Practice (you):

8-10 min quick write and share-out:
What aspects/features of the giant molasses tank bothered residents of
the North End? Why didnt they complain? (GSA!)
(in the event that we do not finish reading, have the Exit Ticket be the
question for the last section that we finished reading!)

Basic definition of advocacy combined with 4-corners to understand
more about that definition.
Annotation reminder and guidance (students partner to share).

Read out loud.
Reminder of click-clunk fixing strategies.
Advocate= opinion+facts.

Checking for Understanding
Annotation share and pauses between sections.
Independent practice quick-write.

Questioning Strategies
What is advocacy?
What was this section about?
Use fix-up strategies to solve clunks.
Section 1 question: Why does the author open the article by
mentioning a terrible disaster, but then not talk about the disaster at all
in section one? (alt question: what does the author talk about in section
1? [details about living conditions and political situation] why does the
author talk about these things instead of the flood?) (or even simpler!
What was living in the North end like for people in the 1900s?)

Vocab lists.
Frequent checks for understanding.
Clunk-fixing strategies cards.

Day one went well. We did not finish the article like I had hoped,
but we got pretty far in the reading. What was more important
was that through CRS (close reading strategies), students gained
an understanding of the text beyond a surface level
understanding. Students were able to cite specific pieces of text
and make inferences to demonstrate their understanding of the
text (CCSS: RL.7.1). We broke the text down into sections and
worked on identifying the main idea in each section, but
unfortunately many students leaned toward summarizing each
section rather than getting the big idea (CCSS: RI.7.2). In order to
get them thinking more about the big picture rather than
summary, we went through and wrote 3-5 words in each section,
no more than that, to state the big idea. That seemed to really get
them thinking about big idea, but might have been why we did not
finish the article. Students also used CRS to identify words that
they did not understand and work through them
(CCSS:L.7.4)(CCSS:L.7.4b). If I did this lesson again (which I kind
of will tomorrow), I would start out by having everyone write the
big idea in a few words rather than asking them to tell me the big
idea. That would help us define the difference between summary
and the big idea faster, thus allowing us to get through the reading

Day 2
I will use close reading strategies (annotation) to help me read and
gain an understanding of the Boston Flood article. I will self-monitor
my understanding of the article by summarizing the key ideas in each

Read and understand the articles, complete the compare-and-contrast
handout, have the beginnings of an understanding of what advocacy is.

Chicken little video:
Scope Magazine
Extra vocab
Annotation pens (blue, red, black)
Compare the Two Disasters (Scope Worksheet)


10 mins vocab

4 mins Chicken little Video
3-5 mins-How strong or weak was his advocacy (what kinds of things
did he do to advocate for his cause)? (3 min quick write, share out)

Practice (I):

3-5 mins each: Finish reading Boston Flood and move on to reading
Dont Drink the Water Article section by section out loud. Circle
clunks in each section. Underline or exclamation points in each
(before we read Dont Drink the Water, 3-5 mins: pour water into a
glass in front of class. What is this? Why is it important? How far do
you have to go to get this stuff? But where does it come from? Can
you count on this to always be there? What do you use it for? What
would you do if this suddenly became unsafe to use?)


3-6 mins each: (between reading sections )Use fix-up strategies with a
partner. Discuss clunks and fix-up strategies. What was this section
about? What did you find interesting? Any points of confusion?
(repeat this and reading for all 4 sections) [also, have one big question
per section, which I will not only ask, but have projected on smart
board. See Questioning strategies below for this content)

Practice (you):

8-10 min quick write and share-out:
What aspects/features of the giant molasses tank bothered residents of
the North End? Why didnt they complain? (GSA!)
15-20 mins compare the two disasters (Scope worksheet) and discuss.

Collect compare the two disasters worksheets

Expanding on def. of advocacy using Chicken Little video.
Annotation reminder and guidance (students partner to share).

Read out loud.
Reminder of click-clunk fixing strategies.
Advocate= opinion+facts.

Checking for Understanding
Chicken little video quick-write and discussion.
Annotation share and pauses between sections.
Share clunks and work through clunk strategies as needed.
Independent practice quick-write.

Questioning Strategies
What is advocacy?
How can someone (like chicken little) advocate effectively for a
What was this section about?
Use fix-up strategies to solve clunks.
Section 1 question: Why does the author open the article by
mentioning a terrible disaster, but then not talk about the disaster at all
in section one? (alt question: what does the author talk about in section
1? [details about living conditions and political situation] why does the
author talk about these things instead of the flood?) (or even simpler!
What was living in the North end like for people in the 1900s?)
Section 2 question: Why didnt the people of the North End stand up
for themselves? (p.9 they couldnt. People viewed immigrants with
suspicion and prejudice. No one would listen)
Section 3 question: How does the author use the story of Anthony to
show how dangerous/destructive the flood was? (or what details does
the author use to show how dangerous/destructive the flood was?)
Section 4 question: Infer: How do the people of the North End
advocate/stand-up for themselves when USIA claims that criminals
had bombed their tank?

How could the people in the North End use advocacy to stand up for

Vocab lists.
Frequent checks for understanding
Clunk-fixing strategies cards

Today went more smoothly than yesterday as far as reading went.
We used the same strategies to finish the first article, and moved
on to reading the second article. We met our objectives by
finishing both articles and discussing their big ideas in-depth.
There were several words in this second article that students
needed to use context on to understand without needing to apply
the roots of the word to figure out meaning (CCSS:L.7.4a). I also
had them write the big idea after reading each section of the text,
which made reading move more smoothly than yesterday because
we did not spend so much time figuring out the difference
between summary and big ideas (CCSS:RI.7.2). The compare and
contrast activity went smoothly, though the ending was rushed
because we began running out of time. Students were at least able
to demonstrate an ability to use facts from the article to compare
the two disasters. If I did this lesson again, I would make sure we
had more time to discuss the similarities and differences between
these two disasters because that is important to learning about
advocacy in this case. Both disasters could have been prevented,
but were not because either people did not advocate, or they could
not advocate.

Day 3
I will understand what it might have been like to be an immigrant in
Boston in the 1900s. I will use a combination of opinion and facts
(from the article) to advocate for my role in the Town Meeting.

Experience being discriminated against, prepare for town meeting
(complete Town Meeting Log)

Blue black red pens
Role-play identity cards
skittles and plastic cups
Foam ball (throwing object for the speaker)
Sentence starter handouts
Town Meeting Log handouts


5 mins class opens in Japanese and all instructions are given in
3-5 mins debrief. How did not understanding what was being said to
you make you feel?
-Connect to being an immigrant.

Practice (I):

2-3 mins read identity card individually (take this time to hand out
cups already filled with skittles)
25-30 mins skittles activity
(students will be given 10 skittles each in cups to start. They will give
away a skittle or two every time they have a superficial characteristic
that is being called on, or give one away to certain people with
superficial characteristics. These will range from shirt colors, hair
length, shoe type, and gender. In the end, all skittles will come back to
me. And will be redistributed again once everyone is working).


5 mins discuss
Why are we doing this?
-immigrants were looked down on
-underprivileged because of their origin, not what they could do

3mins hand out Identity cards and get students into group by colored
dot on card (there will be six different colors)

6-8 mins what is a town meeting? (explanation of what town meetings
are. Whos been to one? What did you observe there? What happens at
a town meeting? Why are we doing one here in our classroom?)

Practice (you):

Start town meeting pre-writing activities:
-8-10 mins get into your groups and discuss your roles
----figure out who is going to say what
groups will have time to work on the town meeting sheets together for
30 mins or until 5 mins before class ends

Exit ticket: In a sentence or two, explain the position of your group.
What are your groups goals for the town meeting?

Instructions in Japanese.
being an immigrant is tough, especially if you dont know the
skittles activity: have students raising their hands depending on what
Ive read.

Identity cards give info about each person.
Prompt students to debrief Town Meeting activity.

Read an identity card for the class, pick out language, job, home,
feelings, etc.
Demonstrate speaking in a role using I feel I think statements.

Checking for Understanding
Participation in skittles activity.
Participation in Town Meeting preparation.
Exit ticket answers will show if they understand the objective of the
town meeting and how to use information and facts to support their
arguments and positions clearly for the meeting.

Questioning Strategies
Describe how Chicken Little advocates for people to be cautious about
the sky falling. What opinions? What facts?
What happens when Chicken Little tries to convince people that the
sky is falling?

Why does _____ have more skittles than other people?
Is that fair?

How can you advocate for your cause in the Town Meeting?
Who had the most voice in the Town Meeting? Why?
Describe the opinions and facts made by the townspeople. What about
the company representatives? The government employees?

Have sentence starters written or printed for students.
Foam ball to help students track who the speaker is.

The first class that I ran this activity with did not go smoothly. I
did not set the expectations for the skittles activity, and as a result,
only had the attention of half of the students in the room. They got
the general idea, but did not gain as deep of an understanding as
my second class, who I set up the expectations by telling them that
they cannot wine or complain or they lose their skittles, and they
must give their skittles to others when told to do so and cannot
move their skittles cups unless asked to pass skittles to other
students. In the end, we had a conversation about how the activity
made them all feel (one student looked like he was going to cry
when all of the skittles were taken away from him in the end of the
activity before the redistribution of skittles). The second class
also had a more productive town meeting because the first classs
meeting was broken into two parts. For the first class, I gave them
an opportunity to work in groups on everything, which resulted in
many students relying on others to do all of the work. For the
second class, though they still worked in groups, they all had their
own papers that they were responsible for completing, which
resulted in a higher number of participant students. The first class
got a second day of the town meeting that looked similar to the
second classs town meeting, but was not as thorough because it
was more of a follow-up day to their first meeting. I would run the
meeting the same way that I did for the second class if given the
opportunity to try again. Otherwise, our collaborative discussions
went well on both days (CCSS:SL.7.1). The second class did a nice
job of preparing their work for their town meeting tomorrow as
well. Their statements are almost finished, and every student has
their own individual statement that they have prepared and are
ready to present as groups and individuals tomorrow.

Day 4
I will use a combination of opinion and facts (from the article) to
advocate for my role in the Town Meeting. I will write a 50 word
statement supporting my goal to present to the class using my facts
and opinions.

Use advocacy in the town meeting to support your opinion.

Group color cards
Extra identity cards just in case
Foam ball
Some sort of gavel
Extra town meeting log handouts


5 mins recap discussion about yesterday

Practice (I):

10 mins opening statements from each group


6-8 mins discuss rebuttal and what it means to rebut someones point.

Practice (you):

20 mins groups get to finish working on their statements and
discussion points

30 mins town meeting (to be continued next class)
[Break students back up into their groups. Have each group sit in one
area of the room. Each sends up one rep to remind people of their
opening statements.
Each group has an opportunity to send up one member who will speak
on their behalf. The division of groups is roughly the government who
is against moving the tank, and the townspeople who are for moving
the tank. After each group has a chance to go, the floor opens to
speakers from everywhere and rebuttals.

Each student will bring with them the color dot that they had
representing them so that others know what group that student belongs
to. Students will be able to use their written statements as a guide for
their spoken position.)

Exit ticket: Who do you feel offered the most convincing arguments
today? Why do you feel that way (give specific examples from the
town meeting)?

Discussing what a rebuttal is.
Teacher is Town Mayor to lead the meeting, ask questions, prompt
further thinking.

Examples of possible rebuttals for opening statements, plus guiding
student examples and analyzing which rebuttals are strong, and why.

Checking for Understanding
Opening statements from groups.
The Town Meeting Log each student carries.
(this activity will be wrapped up the following day).

Questioning Strategies
What is a rebuttal? An opening statement?
Why do we use rebuttals? Opening statements?
How can we use a town meeting to advocate a point we feel strongly
Who did you feel had the most convincing arguments today? Why do
you think that (explain with specific examples)?

Handouts provide scaffolding for students.
Students who do not wish to speak in front of the class will have the
opportunity simply to turn in their meeting log for credit in this

The Town Meeting went well. All students were able to participate
in a wide range of discussions about the molasses tank, and
respond to information and opinions given by other members of
our congregation (CCSS:SL.7.1)(CCSS:SL.7.1c)(CCSS:SL.7.3).
Everyone had their Town Meeting Log complete as well. As a tool,
those logs really seemed to help students guide their thinking and
come to the podium prepared. Even my quiet student who
struggles with class presentations and class work volunteered to
present and used her paper on more than one occasion to help
find her place again (CCSS:SL.7.1a). I felt proud of all students for
their hard work. Some students even brought accents to their
characters and personalities! I could really tell that they
understood how to advocate for their positions. Everyone met
their objective today by using facts and opinions to argue for their
point of view (or rather, that of their character).

Day 5
I will use ICE (Introduce, Cite, Explain) to help me understand the
format of the sample article to help prepare me to write my own article
using ICE.
(note: They have used ICE before, but not within the genre of an
article. Prior experience with ICE came in the form of paragraph
writing in previous semesters.)

Review ICE, gain an understanding of what the final assessment will
need to look like.

ICE article (62 copies)
ICE article Plus ICE (62 copies)
4 Writing Prompt documents posted to Blackboard


20 mins vocab quiz (about 8 mins study time)

Practice (I):

3-5 mins introduce that we will write an article. we will use persuasion
to advocate::explanation of essay topics and expectations (aka how to
5-7 mins read the article
2 mins write observations about article
5 mins share observations (start general, focusing on topic, then zoom
in to specifics about format and organization)
Turn and Talk with neighbor about ICE and what you remember about
ICEing a paragraph.
3 mins remind everyone about ICE the paragraph


15 mins ICE the article as a group (work through first half of
potential for disaster together highlighting the introduction section,
then the citation section, then the explanation section).

Practice (you):

20 mins break into pairs to finish highlighting article and label other
parts of article.

5-8 mins End of class discussion about ICE and how it applies to
writing and creating projects in other content areas.
(Today is Friday, leave 10-15 minutes for the in-class game,
competing for waffles!)

Reminders about ICE
Introduce the article project
Explanation of why we are using the ICE article, and of expectations
for labeling and highlighting the article parts.

Work through first paragraph to demonstrate what we are doing, then
walk them through the next two or three paragraphs in highlighting
(mostly student-lead, with teacher input as needed).

Checking for Understanding
Collect finished ICE articles at end of period.
1-4 check using fingers (1 being I dont get it at all, and 4 being I
could do this if you asked me to).

Questioning Strategies
What is ICE? (define and explain)
In what ways can using ICE help you when writing a paper?
Why do we use ICE? (what are the benefits to using this pattern?)
In what other classes have you created projects or papers where you
used something similar to ICE? (Health class projects often require
them to introduce a topic, cite their sources, and explain using pictures
and texts on a poster, same with science).

Working in partners allows for students to get help if they do not
understand. I will also have ICE information on Blackboard for
students that are confused, which I can walk students through.
The ICE activity itself is an activity with differentiation in mind, to
help students who struggle with the organization of thoughts when

The ICE articles went well as far as reviewing ICE and preparing
for the ICE article goes. Unfortunately, students did find the
highlighting activity tedious. If given another chance, I would find
a way to make that more interactive using the smartboard rather
than making them highlight the same pattern multiple times. Over
all, everyone was able to identify the elements of ICE, and we had
a discussion about why we use ICE instead of just writing what
ever we want in any format we want to write it in (CCSS:SL.7.1).

Day 6
I will use my Scope magazine to find specific facts about the Boston
flood or the Virginia disaster for my fact-finding pre-work. I will
complete the fact-finding questions as prewriting to my essay that will
help me ICE my paragraphs in my article.

Complete fact-finding pre-work in preparation for writing articles.
Continue to explore and use ICE.

Blackboard copies of Writing prompts (fact-finder activities)
Blackboard copies of ICE outline scaffold


10 mins grammar

Practice (I):

5 mins review ICE
5-8 go over the assignment and rubric (show template)


6-8 mins read each prompt, discuss expectations for each, and discuss
expectations for work today.

Practice (you):

25 mins work (in pairs with someone of the same prompt?) to answer
questions in pre-writing fact-finding
10 mins have students share out what kind of information they are
including for certain answers and how they found those answers. How
can we make sure that our facts are right on target?

15 mins answer icebergs: students will be set adrift to a new partner.
With this partner, they must choose two questions to fact-check and
make sure their sources and answers are correct. This will happen at
least 2, maybe 3 times (using the random name generator on

Explanation of prompts and the days work expectations.
Reminder and explanation of article project.

Sharing out answer examples.
Model what a successful answer looks like (fully developed, uses text
evidence, complete sentences, Quanswer) compared to an incomplete

Checking for Understanding
Answers share out discussion.
Floating around the room to check on student progress.
Students will submit their answers to me.

Questioning Strategies
(see prompt fact-finding worksheets)
Why is it important to gather your facts and quotes before you start
How can you find out if your facts and thinking make sense?
Explain how you can use these answers to help you form your article.
How does ICE apply to these fact-finder questions?

Printed copies of articles for students that need them.
4 different prompts offer 4 different levels of difficulty.
Prompt questions offer some scaffolding.

Students were enthusiastic abut choosing their own topics for the
article that we will be working on. I liked the way that things
worked when they worked individually to begin with, and then
had to move around the room to pick a partner to work with. I felt
like making them start by themselves gave students an
opportunity to use their own ideas and opinions to begin their
work, and give them a distraction-free time to work. Making them
move to find a partner gave them an opportunity to get moving to
get some energy out, and allowing them to work with a partner
gave them an opportunity to ask about confusing elements of their
work. Over all, the fact-finders allowed them to organize their
information for later use (CCSS:W.7.1)(CCSS:W.7.1b).
Unfortunately, I was not prepared for students to want to choose
their own topics about advocacy that were not related to
environmental issues. For next time, I will remember to keep that
open option more open. As it was, students who chose a non
environmental task were confused when fact finder questions
asked them to compare their issues to the disasters in our articles.
For next time, I will offer a completely open choice and find other
ways to relate it to all of the advocacy work we have done with the
Scope magazine up to this point.

Day 7
Today I will use my info-finder work to help me create an ICE outline
that will be the building-blocks for my article.

Finish fact-finder work, begin outline for article in preparation for
writing the article. Continue using ICE.

Outline copies for students that need physical copies
Outline posted to Blackboard


10 mins vocab

Practice (I):

5-7 mins walk through outline structure and how to use this outline
successfully as pre-writing for their essay.


7-10 mins fill in the first three boxes on a topic selected by class so
students can see how to use the outline.

Practice (you):

For the rest of class, students will be able to work on their outlines.
First half of class will be independent work, then depending on
progress and behavior, students with similar topics can work together
in no more than pairs (with the expectation being that if they arent
working, they lose that privilege. Students will also lose the choice of
pair work if they are copying from one another)

Collect fact-finding copies from students who have physical copies,
remind students to send it to me for credit by the end of class!

Instructions on how to use the ICE outline.
Reminders that this kind of outline is just another tool for them to use
to write an essay, and if this organizer does not work for them, they
shouldnt use it.

Work through the fist section together as a class on the smartboard.

Checking for Understanding
Walking around seeing student progress.
Check outlines when submitted.
Check fact-finder papers.

Questioning Strategies
How can you use the ICE outline to help you organize your article
before you write it?
Why are organizers like this important?
Compare this organizer to other outline organizers we have used: does
this one help you more, or is another organizer more helpful to you?
Describe the ways you use facts from your fact-finder sheets in your
outline for the article.

Partner work.
ICE graphic organizer/outline as pre-writing.
Physical copies of outline for those who need it.

Many students did not finish their fact-finder worksheets, so I had
to assign that one as homework. I am worried that those students
will have trouble finishing the article writing in time because they
did not start their ICE outlines today. Other than that, things went
smoothly today like it did yesterday. I followed the same model of
having students start working individually, and then move about
the room to find a partner. There were a few students who did not
demonstrate an ability to work successfully with a partner today
and I had to move them to a space where they had to work silently
on their own. Most students used the outline that I provided them
with, but some chose to organize their information using
organizers that they have used in the past in this class. Their
information was organized effectively because they knew how to
organize it from the example at the beginning of class

Day 8
I will use the ICE graphic organizer to help me organize my thoughts
and evidence before writing my article. Once I have finished my
outline and gotten it okayed by Mrs. B, I will use it to begin drafting
my article.

Finish ICE outline, begin article. Continue using ICE while
demonstrating an ability to use facts and opinions in advocacy.

Extra copies of ICE outline just in case.


15 mins grammar

Practice (I):

5-7 mins demonstrate on smartboard how to transition from outline
style to article draft using our group example (probably about dogs)
from the day before.


10-15 mins have students work in partners and then share out
changing the next two boxes of our sample outline into paragraph
form (each box is a paragraph, but they will not be required to write a
fully fleshed out paragraph. We will discuss the difference between
what they create and a 3 or 4 level paragraph before they get to start
independent work today)

Practice (you):

For the rest of class students will get to work independently or in
partners based on how that went the previous day. Again, this is
dependent also on how well they work and how much gets done.
Students should only spend half of this time creating their outline as
needed, and the rest of the time everyone should be working on their

Collect ICE article outline.

Demonstrating how to transition from outline to written paragraphs.

Walking students through the group outline-to-paragraph examples.

Checking for Understanding
Walking around the room to check on student progress.
1-4 finger check on how strong students feel about their ability to use
their outline to create an article.
Checking their outline work.

Questioning Strategies
What does every paragraph have to have in it to be a successful
paragraph in your article? (ICE)
How do you use the information in your outline to help you write an
Does the outline help you build your article? (Why are we writing
outlines first, if we could save time by skipping this step?)

Physical copies of documents.
Group and partner work.

Most students started their article today, but there are a few who
did not finish the ICE organizer yet. I assigned it as homework to
anyone who did not finish. If I were to run this unit again, I would
make sure that there was more time planned into the unit for
completing these two organizers so that there are no students
who might not finish on time. Otherwise, students seem to be
doing well organizing their articles and information. It is difficult
to tell at this point in the writing process. The example we went
over today seems to have helped, but it could have been a more
helpful example if students had been given more time to think
about what the example might look like before we crafted it. I will
be sure to include that wait time next time (CCSS:7.1d).

Day 9
I will use my ICE outline as an organizational tool to help me write
my article.

Continue using ICE while demonstrating an ability to use facts and
opinions in advocacy.

Notecards for students personal writing goals
Physical copies of article for students that need it


10 mins vocab

Practice (I):

5-7 mins reminders about article due date and go over rubric again to
make sure students are hitting required points.


4-7 mins have students write down a personal goal for today as their
focus point in addition to finishing their articles for editing tomorrow.
They should use the rubric to help them set a writing goal. This will be
collected by me and at read as they work.

Practice (you):

Independent work until 10 mins before class ends. Students will work
on their articles until 10 mins before class ends.

10 mins before class ends, revisit their goals. On a new note card,
students will write SPECIFIC examples of whether or not they met
their goal or HOW they will meet their goal if they have not met it yet.
They cant just say more detail or work harder or stop talking to
friends. It has to be something specific about how to reach their goal
in their writing by taking specific action. This is their ticket out the

Reminders about due date
Reminder of rubric requirements

Model a specific, actionable goal for the note card and an example of
goals that do not work because they are not actionable.

Checking for Understanding
Goal cards
Walking around the room to observe student work

Questioning Strategies
What specific actionable goal can you set for your work today?
How will you achieve this goal?
Will this goal help you get the grade you want? Why?

Allow students to write articles by hand if needed.
Goal setting narrows down the task to a more manageable level for
many students so they do not become overwhelmed by daunting tasks.

The writing goals went well and seemed to help many students.
There were only three students that did not finish their goals, or
were not sure what goals to even set. I think I will use this goal
setting idea earlier in the unit next time, so that students become
familiar with the idea of monitoring their own progress using
specific goals. Otherwise, students are really using their ICE
organizers to help them craft their articles (CCSS:W.7.2a).

Day 10
I will help my partner find their/theyre/there errors, context errors,
and redundant word errors in their paper. I will make sure that I have
everything I need to finish my article over the weekend so that I can
turn it in on Monday and get the grade that I want.

Continue using ICE while demonstrating an ability to use facts and
opinions in advocacy. Begin peer-editing in preparation for Mondays
due date.

Lazy Editor for board
Scope magazine


(No vocab or grammar!)
15 mins Lazy Editor (focus on their/theyre/there, redundant words,
context). Work through one of each problem together, allow students
to work in partners.

Practice (I):

(Today, the guided practice is part of the anticipatory set. I will
explain that we will be checking our partners papers for these same
mistakes, and will have a checklist up on the board that they will need
to copy down on their own paper and


5-6 mins come back together as a class over lazy editor and fix the one
on the board together, paying attention to how students reached those
conclusions and knew that there was something wrong in the article.

Practice (you):

Students will work in partners (most likely selected with the random
name generator) to edit their papers using the three skills we practiced
in the Lazy Editor. When they finish, they will either be able to
continue working on their article if they are not done, or will be
pointed to peer editing work weve done in past units and will get to
pick a new partner to fix topic sentences and thesis.

Ticket out the door:
Their checklist with three errors they found and fixed in their partners

(their Friday game time is dependent on how they work today and how
much gets done)

Articles are due Monday at the start of class. If they are not in my in-
box or my hand by the start of class Monday, they are late! Monday
will be the start of a new mini-unit and TCAP week, so it will not be a
work day!

Explanation of how to use Lazy Editor.
Reminders of due dates.
Explanation of how to use Lazy Editor skills to help edit their
partners paper and of peer editing expectations.

Work through one example each of the three Lazy Editor skills.
Work through Lazy Editor as a group.

Checking for Understanding
Working through lazy editor as a group
Ticket out the door.

Questioning Strategies
Explain how you can be a helpful peer editing partner for your partner.
How can todays Lazy Editor skills help you work on your own paper?
Why is it important to have a partner peer edit your paper?

Partner work.
Option to work alone on all partner work.
Copy of the Lazy Editor from their magazines projected on the board
as well.

I had many students who did not turn in their articles yet, and did
not look like they were near finishing. Hopefully they will finish in
time. We worked on editing techniques with the Lazy Editor today.
It went smoothly this time because I did not focus on every editing
skill in the Lazy Editor like I tried to do last time. I think this
caused a lot less frustration, and was less daunting for students.
We also wound up having plenty of time to discuss the answers
that partner groups came up with. I should have used the random
name generater to slect partner groups because many students
just got together with their friends to chat. We also discussed
conclusions to their advocacy articles, and how those conclusions
should tye together their opinions and the end result that they are
calling for (CCSS:W.7.1e).