Type up the following arguments to assign to each group:
Can't find what you are looking for? Contact Us Listen to this post as a podcast: For seven years, I was a writing teacher. Yes, I was certified to teach the full spectrum of English language arts—literature, grammar and usage, speech, drama, and so on—but my absolute favorite, the thing I loved doing the most, was teaching students how to write.
That practice will continue for as long as I keep this up. Although I know many of the people who visit here are not strictly English language arts teachers, my hope is that these posts will provide tons of value to those who are, and to those who teach all subjects, including writing.
This overview will be most helpful to those who are new to teaching writing, or teachers who have not gotten good results with the approach you have taken up to now. If you are an experienced English language arts teacher, you probably already have a system for teaching this skill that you like.
I would ask students which author they feel did the best job of influencing the reader, and what suggestions they would make to improve the writing. I would also ask them to notice things like stories, facts and statistics, and other things the authors use to develop their ideas.
Later, as students work on their own pieces, I would likely return to these pieces to show students how to execute certain writing moves.
Informal Argument, Freestyle Although many students might need more practice in writing an effective argument, many of them are excellent at arguing in person.
An activity like This or That one of persuasive writing activities for elementary students classroom icebreakers I talked about last year would be perfect here: Then they take turns explaining why they are standing in that position.
This ultimately looks a little bit like a debate, as students from either side tend to defend their position to those on the other side. Informal Argument, Not so Freestyle Once students have argued without the support of any kind of research or text, I would set up a second debate; this time with more structure and more time to research ahead of time.
Here they are still doing verbal argument, but the experience should make them more likely to appreciate the value of evidence when trying to persuade. Before leaving this step, I would have students transfer their thoughts from the discussion they just had into something that looks like the opening paragraph of a written argument: A statement of their point of view, plus three reasons to support that point of view.
Introduction of the Performance Assessment Next I would show students their major assignment, the performance assessment that they will work on for the next few weeks.
What does this look like? Anytime I give students a major writing assignment, I let them see these documents very early on. At this time, I also show them a model of a piece of writing that meets the requirements of the assignment. Unlike the mentor texts we read on day 1, this sample would be something teacher-created or an excellent student model from a previous year to fit the parameters of the assignment.
I would devote at least one more class period to having students consider their topic for the essay, drafting a thesis statement, and planning the main points of their essay in a graphic organizer. I would also begin writing my own essay on a different topic.
This has been my number one strategy for teaching students how to become better writers. Using a document camera or overhead projector, I start from scratch, thinking out loud and scribbling down my thoughts as they come.
When students see how messy the process can be, it becomes less intimidating for them. They begin to understand how to take the thoughts that are stirring around in your head and turn them into something that makes sense in writing.
I would rather spend more time getting it right at the pre-writing stage than have a student go off willy-nilly, draft a full essay, then realize they need to start over. Meanwhile, students who have their plans in order will be allowed to move on to the next step.
During this time, I would move around the room, helping students solve problems and offering feedback on whatever part of the piece they are working on. I would encourage students to share their work with peers and give feedback at all stages of the writing process.
If I wanted to make the unit even more student-centered, I would provide the mini-lessons in written or video format and let students work through them at their own pace, without me teaching them. To learn more about this approach, read my post on self-paced learning.
As students begin to complete their essays, the mini-lessons would focus more on matters of style and usage.
Only then do we start fixing the smaller mistakes. Final Assessment Finally, the finished essays are handed in for a grade. Use the comments section below to share your techniques or ask questions about the most effective ways to teach argumentative writing.
Want this unit ready-made?Pictures and Slogans Persuade an Audience!
these resources will be sure to give you new and creative ideas to spark students' interests. Persuasive Writing by Tara McCarthy Be sure to check out the reproducible worksheets! 50 Writing Lessons That Work.
I did this as one whole lesson but it could be spread out as needed. The file includes a letter from the Easter bunny stating that he is going to retire. Next to it is a writing frame for the children to analyse, looking especially at the purpose of each. Writing powerful persuasive prose begins by stirring up voices deep within the writer.
As readers, we remember some of these voices of passion, humor, hope and chutzpah. Writing Resources. Many students seek out writing help because it is one of the most interesting new skills they can pick up, yet simultaneously one of the most intimidating.
Practicing persuasive writing helps kids become accustomed to stating their appeals and offering evidence for their arguments. This exercise also helps students understand how other people attempt to persuade them—whether it is a friend, classmate, or through advertising and the media.
Persuasive Writing Worksheets. This fun, fantastical writing prompt is a great way to practice persuasive writing, an important part of upper-elementary composition.
4th grade In this activity, students write a persuasive paragraph about why their dream career is a good choice.