‘Voices of Change’ Unit

Student Teacher: Wendy Castillo School: Ilima Intermediate Cooperating Teacher: Corinne Ballou
Grade: 8 Content Area: ELA Inclusion University Supervisor: Kale’a Silva Dates:3/31/14-

Student Population:
Total Number of Students ___105__ Males ___53__ Females_51____ SPED Inclusion ____26_ SPED Pullout _____ ELL
GT _____ Any Other _____________ _____ _____________ _____ ______________ _____
Additional Information:

SLO Components For a complete description of SLO components and guiding questions, use the “Student
Learning Objective Planning Document” attachment.
Learning Goal

Learning Goal:
To engage in meaningful discussion of historical and contemporary issues of local and
global importance.

To employ effective communication skills in small and large group settings.

To examine and employ various media channels.

To explore issues of local and global importance.

Big idea:

This unit introduces the idea of effective communication and addressing challenging
issues in today’s society. Effective communication involves the initial stages of gathering
concrete reasons and strong evidence to support your opinion. Then the delivery of the
oral presentation involves the critical areas of pitch, volume, tone, and tempo to capture
the audiences’ attention. Addressing challenging concerns in today’s society involves
awareness that there are debatable and non-debatable issues involving the home,
school, and government. Taking a stance and gathering reasons and evidence are the
important steps in creating a strong argumentative writing piece.

Students will be able to independently use their learning to:
Identify issues in today’s society.

Address challenging issues with possible resolutions.

Effectively communicate about debatable and non-debatable issues.
Apply their thoughts and opinions about injustice and how to make a difference.


Students will understand…

Students will understand the implications of addressing social issues.
Students will understand the elements of effective communication.
Students will understand the context of The Holocaust.
Students will understand empathy.
Students will understand how to gather strong evidence to support an opinion.
Students will understand how media channels are used to capture audiences’ attention
for the purpose of making a difference.

Essential Questions:
How can one person make a difference when encountering a social challenge?

How do people communicate effectively about injustice?

Students will know:

- academic vocabulary:
Allegory, Anti-Semitism, Genocide, Holocaust, Propaganda, Communication, Antecedent

- Debatable and non-debatable issues involving the home, school, and government.

-The difference between the meaning of holocaust and The Holocaust.

-How to address challenging concerns in today’s society.

-That the world must stand up to violence and oppression.

Students will be skilled:

Applying lessons of the Holocaust and taking action about a challenging issue in their
school, community, or the world.

Taking a stance and gathering reasons and evidence to create a strong argumentative
writing piece.

Using effective communication skills when discussing in a small or large group setting.

Gathering information and work cooperatively to effectively take on an oral



Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of using different mediums (e.g. print or digital text,
video, multimedia) to present a particular topic or idea.
Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence.

Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are
appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-to-one, in groups, and teacher-led)
with diverse partners on grade 8 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and
expressing their own clearly.

Present claims and findings, emphasizing salient points in a focused, coherent manner with
relevant evidence, sound valid reasoning and well-chosen details; use appropriate eye contact,
adequate volume, and clear pronunciation.

The world has dark pages in its history, and at times the challenge of righting such
immeasurable wrongs is impossible. A study of narratives about the Holocaust, whether
nonfiction accounts or fictionalized accounts based on true events, will reveal the worst
in human behavior. Holocaust education engages students in critical thinking and self-
reflection, by which they can make essential connections between history and the
contemporary moral choices they confront in their own lives. By studying the past to
understand the present, they learn that human beings possess the power to control their
behavior, so they become aware of the importance of making choices and come to
realize that one person can make a difference.

Interval of instruction necessary to address goal: Solo Period (Four consecutive weeks) March
31-May 2, 2014
Scoring and Criteria

All desired results are being appropriately addressed. Students will be engaged in
activities that will address the learning goals, develop reasoning skills, and interact with
peers and access prior knowledge.

Evaluative Criteria:

Students will be evaluated as Exemplary, Proficient, or Emerging with the use of scoring
guides from SpringBoard. Also, I will use General Learner Outcomes (GLOs) to evaluate
students work habits, behavior and efforts in the classroom. GLO rubric: Consistently
demonstrate, usually demonstrates, sometimes demonstrates and rarely demonstrates.

Performance Task:
Students will show that they really understand by evidence of…
How will students demonstrate their understanding through complex performance?


Students will listen to the story Terrible Things: An Allegory of the Holocaust. They will
complete the graphic organizer in activity 4.2 of their SpringBoard where they will note
the actions of the characters in the story.

Students will write a paragraph discussing Bunting’s message using evidence from the
story to support their assertion.

Students will define and explain vocabulary words related to the Holocaust. They will
become familiar with several terms regarding the Holocaust by finding a definition or
explanation of the terms to create a word wall.

Students will engage in reflective thinking and writing about the events of the Holocaust.

Students will complete Activity 4.5 in SpringBoard. They will watch several clips from the
film Life is Beautiful directed by Roberto Benigni and complete the Holocaust Film
Viewing Chart. In collaborative groups they will discuss and answer discussion questions
from the film.

Students will conduct an argumentative writing piece addressing a challenging issue in
today’s society involving the home, school, or government and engage in an oral

Students will learn about the injustice of children/teens in different parts of the world
who can’t obtain an education. They will read an article about Malala Yousafzai and
apply the knowledge they’ve obtained to compose a SUTW piece on an issue they see in
their everyday life and how they can make a difference

Other Evidence:
Think-Pair-Share –Learning About the Holocaust
Quick writes
Graphic Organizers
Whole class discussion
Small group discussions
Expected Targets


Students will reflect on the essential question: How can one person make a difference
when encountering a social challenge? This question will be presented in a think-pair-
share activity.

Students will develop a K-W-L chart to demonstrate their prior knowledge of the
Holocaust which they complete throughout the Unit.

Expected target for each student performance group:

When needed, special needs and low learning students in the inclusive setting will be
pulled out for small group instruction. They will also be provided with adapted and

modified instruction and assignments to meet their individual needs.
-Word Banks
-One-to-one assistance
-Extended time

Rationale for expected targets:

In an inclusive setting there are students with different levels of learning. The unit plan will be
relevant and keep student interests in mind. Additionally, addressing the needs of every student
is crucial, thus, by creating activities that target visual, kinesthetic, and auditory learners makes
the plan effective and engaging for students.

(CT and US will determine
how many lesson plans you
will need to submit for your
Instructional strategies for each level of performance:
Learning Events:
Week 1-4 March 31- May 2
(Skip Week of 4/14-4/18 for HSA testing)

Students will be introduced to the Unit ‘Voices of Change’. First students will think about
the question, How can one person make a difference when encountering a social
challenge? They will discuss their initial thoughts about the question with their peers and
teacher. They will commence working on Acitivity 4.2 (An Allegory) where they will be
read the book Terrible Things: An Allegory of the Holocaust by Eve Bunting. This lesson
will introduce students to the Holocaust through Allegory. They will discuss why this
story is an allegory. What do the animals stand for? Why don’t the animals in the story
help one another? And how this is an allegory about the Holocaust.

In the lesson Learning About the Holocaust students will go deeper into understanding
the Holocaust. They will be given a KWL chart that they will work on throughout the unit.
First they will complete the ‘Know’ portion and then the ‘What do I want to know’
portion. They will be given an opportunity to work with a partner to complete a
Holocaust Vocabulary word wall to define and explain terms that will come across in the
topic of the Holocaust (e.g. anti-Semitism, concentration camp, death camp,

After watching a short documentary video about the Holocaust and discussing major
occurrences of the Holocaust, the students will be given an independent activity of
reflective thinking and writing. They will be reflecting on two scenarios that will be
provided for them. This lesson will help them understand that there is danger in
remaining silent, apathetic, and indifferent in the face of other’s oppression. They will
empathize to catch a slight glimpse of what those who experienced such terrible
oppression might have felt.

Students will be introduced to the film Life is Beautiful. Students will take notes on the
graphic organizer found in their SpringBoard activity 4.5. They will be shown various clips

from the film. Students should focus on information about the Holocaust and the effect
that each clip creates for the viewer. The graphic organizer asks students to provide
details of the holocaust and the intended tone of the film. Students will also engage in
discussion to answer questions regarding the films tone and message about the

Students will work on gathering information on an issue in today’s society. They will
need at least two references to cite in their text. The students will write an
argumentative essay where they discuss the issue and take a stance. They will need to
provide exemplary evidence to support their claim. Their focus should be on social
change and making a difference in the world. They will conduct an Oral Presentation to
present their stance and proposition to the class. (Embedded Assessment)

Students will examine the concept of injustice in education.They will read an
article about Malala Yousafzai called “Why Malala Yousafzai Matters”. This article
discusses Malala’s story of injustice and expresses her desire to make a difference.
Students will evaluate their appreciation for education and reflect on the injustice that
many children/teens are part of.

Students will compose a SUTW piece on an issue they see in their everyday life and how
they can make a difference. In the essay they must clearly explain the injustice and why
they feel it is unfair, the steps they can take to change it, include connections to Malala’s
struggle, and have in the Step Up to Writing format.

Progress Monitoring *(Formative Assessment x 3):

In order to monitor students’ progress toward acquisition, meaning, and transfer, during lesson
events, they will be given opportunities to participate and share their ideas and understandings
as much as possible. They will be provided with opportunities to use critical thinking and
presented with high-level questioning.

Each lesson has students make connections between their prior knowledge and the new
knowledge they’re obtaining. Furthermore, they’re given several strategies that support the
transfer of knowledge into practice. For instance, they will need to gather their own information
about an issue and develop an argumentative piece of writing that will explain both sides of the
issue while taking a stance. Additionally, they will discuss how once person can make a difference
when encountering social challenge.

Since it is an inclusive setting, SPED students will be pulled out for some of the lessons to provide
closer guidance during instruction. They will be given the necessary modifications and
adaptations to strive in every lesson.

To assess and assist with the Student Learning Objective, use the “Rubric for Rating the Quality of Student Learning
Objectives” attachment


Rating rubric for teachers with a class of 5 or more students.
☐ Highly Effective ☐ Effective ☐ Developing ☐ Ineffective

At least 90-100% of students
met or exceeded expected

At least 75-89% of students
met or exceeded expected

At least 60-74% of students
met or exceeded expected

Fewer than 60% of students
met or exceeded expected
Rating rubric for teachers with a class of 4 or fewer students.
☐ Highly Effective ☐ Effective ☐ Developing ☐ Ineffective

Based on individual growth
outcomes, all students met
expected targets and some
exceeded the targets.

Based on individual growth
outcomes, all students met
expected targets.

Based on individual growth
outcomes, some students met
or exceeded expected targets.

Based on individual growth
outcomes, no students met
expected targets.

-Completion of the K-W-L chart.

-QuickWrite reflection on Anne Frank’s quote, “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a
single moment before starting to improve the world.”