Performance Task Guide Description Opportunities for Student Choice Authentic Task

Position Paper Create and share a paper that takes a strong position on an issue of global significance. Students choice can be encouraged in a number of ways: Students can choose the issue, and/or they can choose their position. They can also choose the resources they review, and/or the audience for their paper. Position papers are written in many professions: the closing argument in a court of law, a blog post, a letter to the editor or editorial, a politician's or Congressman's, a presentation at a local city council meeting, etc. There are many possible audiences for position papers: if students are working on a school issue it might be an assembly, if it's a community issue they might present at a City Council Meeting or Town Hall. Students might submit letters to the editor to a newspaper, or see if they can create a guest blog post. Students can create their own class wiki, or put their papers together into a publishable book on a self-publishing site, like blurb. Students might also submit a paper to a conference. ● CCRA.R.8; R.9; ● CCRA.W.1; W.4; W.8; W.9  3-4 levels below high school: http://www.ttms.org/PDFs/03%20Writing%20Samples%20v001%20(Full).pd  2 levels below high school:http://www.gobookee.org/exemplar-middle-schoolstudent-research-paper/  High School: http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?id=3405

Teacher Notes
See the description of Audience, below for ideas about “sharing.”

Opportunities for Exhibition to an Audience

This Summative Assessment is more about the process of writing the paper than about the sharing. Blog and wiki posts, editorials, etc. are powerful sharing methods that do not require extensive time.

CCLS Anchor Standards Exemplars/ Models

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Teacher Resources

● Position Papers: http://www.pearsonhighered.com/showcase/johnsonsheehan/assets/ch11.pdf ● iCivics Persuasive Writing: http://www.icivics.org/curriculum/persuasive-writing ● Graphic and Rubric on Inquiry Learning: http://educationaljargonschs.wikispaces.com/Inquiry ● Writing your Position Paper's Introduction: http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/lesson-plan/writing-your-position-papersintroduction ● Lesson Plans and Exemplars: www.gobookee.org/example-persuasive-articles-schoolmagazine/ ● Explore and Issue or Problem: Research Course: http://www.bcps.org/offices/lis/researchcourse/explore.html#questions ● Skills Far below secondary level: Student learning might focus on identifying evidence to support their position, and finding ways to organize their evidence in writing. ● Skills 1-2 years below secondary level: Students will potentially be able to engage in distinguishing their position from others, identifying evidence that enhances their position. ● Secondary level: Students might focus their learning on arguing for their position by acknowledging and countering other popular opposing points of view. Students will also potentially learn to adjust their arguments or language for different audiences.

Writing your own position paper, and modelling your writing process through thinkalouds, is a powerful way to anticipate student challenges, and
ensure that your instructions are clear for every task. See Write Like This Teaching Real-World Writing Through Modeling and Mentor Texts by Kelly Gallagher for sample lessons and support with this process. http://www.stenhouse.com/shop/ pc/viewprd.asp?idProduct=9513&r =

Grade Level Adaptations

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Position Paper Learning Progressions: Formative Tasks

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Explore the Genre of Persuasive Writing Choose a Topic Research the Issue Choose a Position Find Supporting Evidence Outline and Draft Give and Receive Feedback Revise Edit Create an Executive Summary

The following pages detail the Formative Tasks that outline the Learning Progression. They can be combined in a number of ways to build a customized Performance Task. Each Formative Task stands on it’s own or can be used in combination with others. The goal is to provide teachers with maximum flexibility and choice, while still providing useful strategies and resources. For example, if one is teaching a 10th grade ELA course and wants to introduce students to position papers, and the emphasis is going to be on Finding Supporting Evidence, Drafting and Revising, the teacher can decide to save time by skipping several of the Formative Tasks in the Learning Progression this time (in this case, s/he would choose a topic, provide research, and tell students which position they will take, before jumping in to working with students on finding supportive evidence). At a later moment, the teacher may decide to focus on the skipped Formative Tasks in the Learning Progression: research, or peer feedback, etc. Other reasons to include or skip Formative Tasks: Once students demonstrate mastery on a Formative Task, they no longer need to be assessed on it. One the other hand, if a student is struggling with a Formative Task, more individualized support may need to be provided, and additional opportunities to master it will need to be created. Finally, if a student is new to the school and has gaps in particular Formative Tasks, it will be important to create carefully scaffolded learning around these tasks.

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Explore the Genre of Persuasive Writing What is a Position Paper? Develop a clear enough understanding of the characteristics of this genre to be able to explain your understanding to others.

Teacher Notes
This activity is fundamentally about understanding craft and structure of this type of writing, not the exploration of a specific issue. See possible activities, below, for ideas for the task you might ask students to complete.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Assessed Possible Activities:

1-3 hours CCRA.R.5; CCRA.R6 1. Conduct a mini-lesson on position papers, describing the key organizational structure, form, and approach. 2. Provide several exemplars and ask students to select 2-3 to examine and create a list of similarities in structure, craft and form. Or use a jigsaw format, where students work in groups, and each group reads texts about the genre of persuasive writing and examines a different exemplar. Then groups reorganize so that the new groups each have 1 representative from the former group, and each representative shares their learning with the others in this new group, to create a collective understanding of the genre. 3. Coding the Text: Ask students to read 2 exemplars and put the following codes on the elements they discover: IP=Introduction of the position; MP=Main point re: the position; SE=supporting evidence for the position; T=Transition sentences; PL=Examples of persuasive language; CP=Conclusion about the Position.
The first few pages of the Pearson Chapter may be a very helpful frame, as you think about ways to organize this activity (http://www.pearsonhighered.com/sho wcase/johnsonsheehan/assets/ch11.pdf). For example, you might create a template out of the first 3 pages of the chapter (p. 221-223), that students can use as they review exemplars.

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Resources

Resource detailing the characteristics of writing genres: http://www.education.com/reference/article/writing-genres/ ● Global Issues and Positions http://www.globalissues.org/issue Student position papers on global issues: ● USA Editorial: Cyberbullying calls for new weapons: Our View:http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/10/23/rebeccasedwick-suicide-cyberbullying-criminal-editorials-debates/3173189/ ● Bullying in School http://www.teenink.com/opinion/school_college/article/331645/Bullyingin-School/ ● Model UN discussion of position papers with samples http://www.unausa.org/global-classrooms-model-un/how-toparticipate/model-un-preparation/position-papers ● NYC Exemplars of position papers in grade 3 http://schools.nyc.gov/NR/rdonlyres/0F4660F6-6E81-47F2-B0AC42D85901CA85/0/NYCDOEG3LiteracySharks_Final.pdf

Looking at Exemplars of position papers, or their rubrics, and comparing them to any writing baseline assessments you have for your class can help you determine the instruction and scaffolding to include in this work.

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Choose a Topic What makes for a good position paper topic? Identify a global issue, or a topic within a larger issue, that you either feel strongly about or wonder about.

Teacher Notes
Research topics and position papers usually spring from passionate views and important questions that we have, want to explore, and ultimately, want to share with others. As you plan, it can be tremendously helpful to begin by providing students with the opportunity to identify their big questions and strong views. It may also be helpful for students to review a list of big questions about particular topics.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Possible Activities:

1-3 hours CCRA.R.7 1. If students have complete freedom over the issue or topic they select, you might model your own writing process by showing how you gather information about the world. Model how you connect to news and global issues based on your prior life experience, your interests, and what your read. You might also ask students to preview newspapers, watch segments of news, and tune into radio news and discuss their connections. 2. Have students brainstorm several topics for their position paper and ask them to write, draw or discuss each one for a few minutes. They can use writing partners, re-read their own work, or ask the whole class for advice on which topic is the “thickest”, most relevant or most interesting.
As you plan, it can be tremendously helpful to begin by providing students with the opportunity to identify their big questions and strong views. It may also be helpful for students to review a list of big questions about particular topics. Also, it will be important to consider the scope of choice that students be given: Are they choosing any global issue they can think of? Are they choosing from a vetted list you have created? Are they choosing a sub-topic within a global issue the class has been studying? You may also decide to choose topics for them (and skip this Formative Assessment).

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Resources

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Argumentative Paper Topics; Selecting a Good Topic: http://www.tc3.edu/library/pdf/argumentative.pdf; Select a topic for an argumentative essay (video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47qyHGXvTSc How to choose a good argumentative essay topic: http://ezinearticles.com/?How-to-Choose-Good-Argumentative-EssayTopics&id=6293392 Global Issues: http://www.globalissues.org/issue

These resources will help students understand how to choose a topic. You will need to put together a list of the resources you want students to review, or websites you want them to explore, or topics you want them to research. Or, you can leave this up to students, if you’ve already taught them to research, and you want to assess their capacity to choose a topic on their own.

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Research the Issue What do people know, say, and believe about this issue? Find and analyze resources that will help you grasp the topic’s key concepts, in addition to deepening your understanding of the range of perspectives about the issue.

Teacher Notes
This task can be completed in 1-2 days if students are given a limited text set (2-3 teacher-selected resources) to work with.Or the activity can be extended, if you are working on teaching students research skills, and want to devote time to teaching students to find credible resources, scan the available literature, learn note-taking skills, and cite resources appropriately.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Possible Activities:

1-3 hours CCRA.R.1 CCRA.W.8 1.Have students complete the first columns of a KWL/KWHLAQ chart (http://www.flickr.com/photos/langwitches/5958295132/ ). If you have a set of class resources for research you might have them preview the books on their topic to frontload as a scaffold. 2. This protocol of brainstorming and reflecting on questions would be appropriate for the upper grades and visual learners. http://www.bcps.org/offices/lis/researchcourse/explore.html#questions 3. Model for students how to take notes (you can offer students several graphic organizers for note-taking, or teach them one strategy, such as Cornell) There are some middle school level resources that could easily be modified for upper or lower grade students. http://infotech.spsd.org/MS/ms_research_step4.html 4. Have students complete an I wonder/Author Says/I say/And So chart: http://moormangb.ced.appstate.edu/5200_f10/unit1/author_says.pdf
The research task can be undertaken with varying levels of scaffolding, ranging from you providing the full class with a set of resources, to each individual student undertaking their own research to identify and work with resources.The key is to make some decisions about(1) the level of independence you want to encourage (and that you believe students can successfully undertake); (2) your expectations for the research: the minimum number of resources students should explore; (3) your expectations for note-taking (if you have expectations).

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Resources

Ways to generate research questions: ● Create Research Questions: http://www.d214.org/district_library/create_research_questions.aspx ● Global Issues: http://www.globalissues.org/issue ● Asking Higher Level Questions to Improve Reading: http://lessonplanspage.com/LAAskingHigherLevelQuestionsToImproveR eadingComp612.htm/ Citing your research ● Identifying Reliable Sources and Citing Them: http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/top-teaching/2010/11/reliablesources-and-citations, Note-taking Organizers ● Info Tech/Info Lit ofr Middle School: Use of Information http://infotech.spsd.org/MS/ms_research_step4.html How to model Cornell Notes (videos) ● Elementary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VCHtgcpZ9Rc ● Middle and Upper http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vOsVKWeyAA

Teaching the Cornell Notes System would allow students to review and synthesize the information they have gathered, encouraging them to synthesize the material.

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Choose a Position What is your position on this issue? Consider the research you have undertaken, and use it to inform the crafting of an evidence-based position on the issue.

Teacher Notes
Teachers serve as guides on the side helping students decide, "How do you feel about what you have learned?, What do you want to convince others"?

Time Frame CCLS Standards Possible Activities:

1 hour CCRA.R.1, CCRA.W.1 1. Ask students to use a mapping/outlining strategy, like mind-mapping, Cornell notes or T-charts, to help them organize their thinking around their position. 2. If you are writing with your students use the Synthesis Protocol detailed here, http://www.west.asu.edu/johnso/synthesis/learners.html, to model your own synthesis of research. 3.Have student discuss or free-write about their understanding of and position on the issue they have researched. 4. Create a class mural, asking all students to make a symbol for their position on an issue. After posting the symbols and explaining their positions ask fellow students to describe their views on the position, either verbally or by placing a post-it with comments next to particular symbols. Organizing Your Thinking ● Eduplace Graphic Organizer: T-chart: http://www.eduplace.com/graphicorganizer/pdf/tchart_eng.pdf ● bubbl.us: https://bubbl.us/ ● Synthesizing Information: Step-by-step Instructions for Learners: http://www.west.asu.edu/johnso/synthesis/learners.html
Students might need varying levels of support synthesizing an argument from their research, allowing discussion and conferencing can be a support that allows collaboration and deeper analysis of their issues. This is a great time for student conferences. While conferring student can share their positions with other students.

Resources

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Find Supporting Evidence What information have you discovered that supports your position on this issue? How do you think about the information that undermines your position? Review at your notes, find compelling quotes, facts, statistics, interviews, “artifacts” and personal stories that support your position. Keep track of those that undermine your position, as you will also need to think about how to respond to counterclaims and conflicting evidence. 1-4 hours CCRA.R, CCRA.W.81 1. In the younger grades a lesson on how to sequence information would be appropriate, helping kids identify where they need the most new informationbeginning, middle or end. 2. Model your own research question development, including several extra questions that are off task. Ask the student to help identify which information would support your position and which would be extraneous. 3. You can revisit and questioning protocol used earlier, this time adding a reflective element. Challenge kids to explain how will they use the information. Elementary: The “Hamburger” Graphic Organizer: http://www.unausa.org/images/content/GC_Model_UN/Model_UN_Prep/Writi ng_the_Position_Paper.pdf Middle: Citing Textual Evidence (video): https://www.teachingchannel.org/videos/teaching-about-textual-evidence Secondary: discovering Ideas Handbook: Support your Claims: http://daphne.palomar.edu/handbook/support.htm

Teacher Notes

If you have had a controlled pool of information for research so far you could consider opening it up to online resources, adding a library visit or offering other text resources.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Possible Activities:

The model UN has a “hamburger model” to help elementary students think about logic and sequence. http://www.unausa.org/images/conten t/GC_Model_UN/Model_UN_Prep/Writ ing_the_Position_Paper.pdf

Resources

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Outline and Draft How can you figure out what you want to say, and how to say it in the most compelling and convincing way possible? Find a way to organize your thoughts about the issue, and the supporting evidence you have collected. Use the writing process to construct your first draft. 2-5 hours CCRA.W.5; CCRA.W.8 1. Offer students a chance to look at exemplars, this time with the purpose of identifying structure, transition words, thesis or position construction and the conclusion. Students may code the text to highlight these sections, use a rubric to give feedback on the papers, or design an outline checklist for their draft. 2.Model the outlining and drafting process through think-alouds how you organize your notes, then begin to draft. You might want to try multiple leads or organizations and ask kids to evaluate that they find most effective and why. 3. Writing Centers with specific supports or lessons based on student need (position creation, transition words, citations, etc.) allow students to work in different writing partnerships or peer edits. Resources for the writing process ● Writing a Position Paper: http://www.sfu.ca/cmns/130d1/WritingaPositionPaper.htm ● Introductions, Body Paragraphs, and Conclusions for an Argument Paper: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/724/1/ ● Instructional Support Modules: Improving Students’ Writing: http://www.k12.wa.us/writing/assessment/supportmaterials.aspx

Teacher Notes
In the upper level grades it would be appropriate to add introduction of opposing points of view and rebuttals to the task.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Possible Activities:

Having students evaluate exemplars with rubric specific feedback can help solidify what they need to add to do for the task. Look at the Annotated Tasks here at, http://schools.nyc.gov/NR/rdonlyres/0F 4660F6-6E81-47F2-B0AC42D85901CA85/0/NYCDOEG3LiteracySh arks_Final.pdf

Resources

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Feedback and Revision How can you improve your draft? Using feedback from a peer and/or teacher, strengthen your draft by improving your use of evidence, continuing to develop your argument, and addressing counter-claims with care and respect. Refine your use of grammar and punctuation, as well as your use of academic vocabulary. 3-5 hours CCRA.W.4, CCRA.W.5; 1. Try using the STAR or RAG feedback and revision protocols developed by Kelly Gallagher. (See resources below.) 2.Create a sheet that allows students to ask specific questions for feedback to multiple revision partners. 3. After reviewing drafts you may want to order a specific set of grammar mini lessons based on student need. These mini lessons can then become part of the expectations for revising.

Teacher Notes

Time Frame CCLS Standards Assessed Possible Activities:

At all instructional levels teachers should have both remediation and extensions built in to this formative assessment. Direct instruction on the difference between revision and editing as well as developing feedback protocols for peer review can help launch productive feedback sessions.

Resources

Is my thesis good enough? Peer Revision ● http://www.huffenglish.com/handouts/persuademe.pdf Grammar Edit Sheet ● https://docs.google.com/a/ebchighschool.org/document/d/1Au3Po1OT rygjfILNXgLQWzH4nXrdxlTK8TQ_TTS3iIg/edit Editing Protocols ● Using STAR to Edit Writing: ● http://writing.umn.edu/mwp/summer/2010/2010%20images/2010%20 demos/sandbergS.pdf ● Peer Editing Groups: Read Around Groups www.lausd.k12.ca.us/District_8/options/ws/PeerEditingGroups.doc

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Edit How can you improve your draft? Using feedback from a peer and/or teacher, strengthen your presentation with a focus on grammar and professional language. 2 hours CCRA.W.4, CCRA.W.5; 1. Give a mini-lesson on editing practices that authors use to ensure they have edited their work including rereading, reading the piece aloud, and having someone else read the piece to you. 2. Pair students and have them read each other’s work aloud so the author can hear the words they have written and self edit. (The purpose here is often the author’s eyes will read what they meant to write when re-reading, but another person can help them access exactly what is on the page. 3. Conduct shared group editing to train students in the diligence necessary to edit. Project a student’s speech and going line by line have students find and correct any errors present. Note: In choosing a speech it's a great practice to use one that reflects errors typical in your class to ensure students all learn from the shared experience. 4. After reviewing drafts, differentiate by giving each student 3-4 specific things to look for and correct in their draft such as “run-on sentences”, “word choice”, “sentence variety” or “correct subject-verb agreement.” 5. After reviewing drafts you may want to order a specific set of mini lessons based on student need. These mini lessons can then become part of the expectations for revising. Grammar Edit Sheet ● https://docs.google.com/a/ebchighschool.org/document/d/1Au3Po1OTrygjfILNXgLQWzH4nXrdxlTK8T Q_TTS3iIg/edit Editing Protocols ● Using STAR to Edit Writing: ● http://writing.umn.edu/mwp/summer/2010/2010%20images/2010%20demos/sandbergS.pdf http://www.lausd.k12.ca.us/District_8/options/ws/PeerEditingGroups.doc ● Peer Editing Groups: Read Around Groups www.lausd.k12.ca.us/District_8/options/ws/PeerEditingGroups.doc

Time Frame CCLS Standards Assessed Possible Activities

Resources

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Formative Assessment Task Description

Executive Summary If you had 2 minutes to tell someone about your issue and your position on it, what would you say? Create a document that prepares you to present the essential points of your position paper with a larger audience.

Teacher Notes
If students are going to present their position paper to a live audience, or use a multimedia vehicle to share their work (such as voicethread, glog, PPT, Prezi, etc.), they should create an executive summary, or a bulleted list of essential points to be addressed. This is not necessary if students are posting their paper to a blog or wiki, or contributing their paper to a book or conference.

Time Frame CCLS Standards Assessed Possible Activities:

2 hours CCRA.W.6 1. Have student partners read copies of each others’ final paper. Ask them to highlight what is the most interesting and essential information. When they return the papers to their author they can discuss why they think items should be included or left out. 2. Have students code their own and each others’ paper using the same codes that were used in the formative assessment on “Exploring the Genre of Persuasive Writing:” IP=Introduction of the position; MP=Main point re: the position; SE=supporting evidence for the position; T=Transition sentences; PL=Examples of persuasive language; CP=Conclusion about the Position. Then, have the author use the codes to create a bulleted list of main points. Determining Importance Resource ● Determining your Main Ideas: http://writingcommons.org/genres/public-speaking/creating-the-bodyof-a-speech/determining-your-main-ideas
Inviting students to pair with new partners and/or outside faculty can help them develop their talking points and pace.

Resources

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