Choices in Little Rock Common Writing Assignment Option #2



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Choices in Little Rock CWA Preparation Journal Option #2 (pilot draft) page

Choices in Little Rock Common Writing Assignment Option #2
PROMPT

The Little Rock Nine were not solely responsible for the desegregation of Central High School. What else was responsible? Pick three factors, individuals, and/or groups that were also responsible for the desegregation of Central High School. Use evidence to defend how they also significantly contributed to the desegregation of Central High.


CWA due dates

Pre-writing:

First Draft:

Second Draft:
CWA Preparation Journal Checklist
___ Step 1: Understanding the CWA prompt (pre-writing)

(Task 1) Identity chart for Little Rock, 1953

(Task 2) Brown v. Board of Education

___ Step 2: Gathering evidence (pre-writing)

(Task 3) Evidence Log



___ Step 3: Supporting a thesis statement (pre-writing)

(Task 4) Clarifying opinions

(Task 5) Writing a thesis

(Task 6) Outlining the essay



___ Step 4: Writing your essay

(Task 7) Writing the introduction

(Task 8) Writing body paragraphs

(Task 9) Writing a conclusion



___ Step 5: Revising, editing and reflecting

(Task 10) Writing a second draft

(Task 11) Reflecting on the process

Step 1: Understanding the CWA Prompt (Pre-writing)

Understanding the prompt is the first step in writing a formal essay. We suggest introducing the prompt early in the unit. That way, as they learn new material, students can think about how this information relates to the essay question.


(Task 1) Identity chart for Little Rock, 1953

(To be completed during and after Part 2, lessons 1-3 of CILR)



Suggested teaching strategy: Identity chart
Locate Little Rock, Arkansas on a map. Based on what you know about segregation in the South during the 1950’s (and before), what do you think life was like in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1953? Draw an identity chart for Little Rock.

(Task 2) Brown v. Board of Education (to be completed after Part 2, lesson 4 of CILR)



Suggested teaching strategy: Think-pair-share, Wraparound


    1. List 10 things you know about the Brown v. Board of Education decision:



    1. Making predictions:

a. How might this decision change things in Little Rock, Arkansas?

b. What do you think this decision might not be able to change?

STEP 2: Gathering Evidence (Pre-writing)

Students will find the evidence for their essays in parts 3 and 4 of Choices in Little Rock. As they learn about various responses to desegregation at Central High School, students can take notes and/or underline ideas that relate to the essay prompt. You can also have them record relevant information in a graphic organizer, like the sample evidence logs we have included below.


(Task 3) Sample Evidence Logs (to be completed during Parts 3 and 4 of CILR)

Suggested teaching strategy: Gallery walk, One-minute interviews
Log v.1

Key for Labels:

A. “Concerned group of thoughtful, committed citizens” B. Elected official

C. Judge (judicial system) D. Individual

E. Global events (events happening around the world) F. Media

G. Public opinion H. Natural disaster

I. Other: J. Other:


Change agent

Label

What did he/she/they/it do to contribute to desegregation at Central High School?

Source information (Document name, who said it, date…)

Comments and questions

Link


Individual


He helped Melba escape the kids that were going to hurt her.





Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Pattillo Beals (171-172)

How much impact did this have on the situation beyond Melba?

Why would he do this?





















































Log v.2


Change agent

Examples

What did they do to contribute (or not) to the desegregation of Little Rock?

Sources – Where did you find this information?


NAACP

(as represented by Daisy Bates)










Elected officials

(Leaders)

1. President Eisenhower








2.







3.









Courts

(justice system)

1. Brown v. Board of Ed decision








2.







3.









Media

1. Alex Wilson








2.







3.









Individuals

1. Link






2. Jane Emery







3.







4.







5.








Other:












Other:













STEP 3: Supporting a thesis (Pre-writing)

Until students have identified and organized the content for their paper, they are still in the pre-writing stage of writing. The next three tasks have been included because they help students get to the point where they have the ingredients they need to write an effective essay: a thesis, arguments, evidence and analysis.


(Task 4) Clarifying opinions: Sample worksheet (To be completed after finishing CILR)

Suggested teaching strategies: Four corners, Barometer, Big paper
Directions:

  1. In Column 1, list at least 7 possible factors (individuals, groups, organizations, institutions, etc) that contributed to the eventual desegregation of Central High School (in addition to the Little Rock Nine).

  2. Then rank these factors in terms of their significance with 1 = Extremely significant (desegregation definitely would not have happened without this), 2 = Very significant (desegregation probably would not have happened without this), and 3 = significant (desegregation could have still happened without this but it would have taken longer or have been more challenging).

  3. In column three, include evidence or ideas you used to make this judgment.

Option: This task could also be completed as a pie chart. List all factors (except for the Little Rock Nine) that contributed to the desegregation of Central High School. Then give each factor a piece of the pie that represents its relative contribution to the desegregation of Central High School.





  1. After you complete the chart, answer the following question:



Based on what you recorded in your argument chart, in addition to the Little Rock Nine, which three factors (individuals, groups, institutions, etc.) were most responsible for the desegregation of Central High School?
1.

2.

3.
Besides the Little Rock Nine, what were the most significant factors that contributed to the desegregation of Central High School?

Column 1

Change agent: Who or what was responsible for the eventual desegregation of Central High School?



Column 2

Ranking (How significant was this factor?)



Column 3

Explanation for ranking – evidence












































































Task 9: Writing a thesis

Students should not proceed with writing their papers until they are confident that their thesis addresses the essay prompt and can be defended with several arguments. Before students begin to gather evidence, we suggest that they have their thesis statement approved by a peer and/or a teacher.


Writing a thesis: Sample worksheet (to be completed after finishing CILR)

Suggested teaching strategies: Dissecting a writing prompt, Thesis brainstorm, Four corners, Final word, Concept map, Free-writing
Directions: Check off each step as you complete it.
___ Step 1: Re-read the prompt. Circle words and phrases that are particularly important.
PROMPT:

The Little Rock Nine were not solely responsible for the desegregation of Central High School. What else was responsible? Pick three factors, individuals, and/or groups that were also responsible for the desegregation of Central High School. Use evidence to defend how they also significantly contributed to the desegregation of Central High.

___ Step 2: Brainstorm possible thesis statements that address this prompt (at least four).

___ Step 3: Put a star by the thesis statement that best reflects what you believe the evidence in this unit supports.

__ Step 4: Why do you believe this thesis? Can you think of at least two reasons?
Reason #1:
Reason #2
(Optional) Reason #3:

__ Step 5: Have an editor approve your thesis and reasons (arguments). You will need to keep working on your thesis and arguments until they are approved by an editor.


Editor’s name: _____________________________________________
___ The thesis is clear.
___ The reasons (arguments) support the thesis.

(Task 9) Outlining the essay

Students should not begin writing their essays until they have identified and organized the information they will use to support their thesis. Completing an outline confirms that students have sufficient arguments and evidence to begin writing. For students who are unsure of what to include in their outlines, graphic organizers can help. Graphic organizers provide a clear way for students to know what information they need to gather before beginning to write their essay.. To prevent students from moving ahead with confusing or incomplete ideas, we suggest that students get regular feedback throughout the entire writing process. Frequent editor “check-ins” keep students from repeating the same mistakes throughout their paper. On the next several pages, we have included sample worksheets designed to help students organize and get feedback on their ideas prior to writing. Additional graphic organizers can be found in the “Using Graphic Organizers” teaching strategy.


Sample CWA Graphic Organizer

Suggested teaching strategies: Gallery walk, Big paper, Using graphic organizers
__ Step 1: Write an argument (reason) why someone should believe your thesis:

__ Step 2: Complete this chart



Evidence to support argument (with citation)

Analysis: This evidence supports my argument because….

1.

2.


3.


__ Step 3: Ask an editor to review Argument 1. Editor’s name: ____________________



Strength of evidence: ____ points

__ Includes 2 or more pieces of relevant, high-quality evidence (3 points)

__ Includes 1 piece of relevant, high-quality evidence (2 points)

__ Evidence provided, but does not support argument or is not high-quality – not from sources we have used in class or other approved source (1 point)

__ No evidence provided (no points)
Citing sources: ___ points

__ cites all sources appropriately (2 points)

__ cites sources, but does not always follow proper format (1 point)

__ no citations (no points)


Analysis: ___ points

__ clearly explains how evidence supports argument (2 points)

__ explains how some, but not all, evidence supports argument (1 point)

__ does not explain how evidence supports argument (0 points)


___ Step 4: Write another argument (reason) why someone should believe your thesis:
___ Step 5: Complete this chart

Evidence to support argument (with source)

Analysis: This evidence supports my argument because….

1.
2.

3.



__ Step 6: Ask an editor to review Argument 2. Editor’s name: _____________________


Strength of evidence: ____ points

__ Includes 2 or more pieces of relevant, high-quality evidence (3 points)

__ Includes 1 piece of relevant, high-quality evidence (2 points)

__ Evidence provided, but does not support argument or is not high-quality – not from sources we have used in class or other approved source (1 point)

__ No evidence provided (no points)
Citing sources: ___ points

__ cites all sources appropriately (2 points)

__ cites sources, but does not always follow proper format (1 point)

__ no citations (no points)


Analysis: ___ points

__ clearly explains how evidence supports argument (2 points)

__ explains how some, but not all, evidence supports argument (1 point)

__ does not explain how evidence supports argument (0 points)


__ Step 7 (Optional): Write an argument (reason) why someone should believe your thesis. You might decide to refute a counter-argument. ( While some people believe__________, I argue __________.)

__ Step 8: Complete chart



Evidence to support argument (with source)

Analysis: This evidence supports my argument because….

1.

2.

3.







__ Step 9: Ask an editor to review Argument 3. Editor’s name:_____________________

Strength of evidence: ____ points

__ Includes 2 or more pieces of relevant, high-quality evidence (3 points)

__ Includes 1 piece of relevant, high-quality evidence (2 points)

__ Evidence provided, but does not support argument or is not high-quality – not from sources we have used in class or other approved source (1 point)

__ No evidence provided (no points)
Citing sources: ___ points

__ cites all sources appropriately (2 points)

__ cites sources, but does not always follow proper format (1 point)

__ no citations (no points)


Analysis: ___ points

__ clearly explains how evidence supports argument (2 points)

__ explains how some, but not all, evidence supports argument (1 point)

__ does not explain how evidence supports argument (0 points)


__ Step 10: Review your work and the feedback you received. What are three ways to improve your arguments, evidence, and/or analysis?

__ Step 11: Improve your arguments, evidence and/or analysis: Incorporate feedback into your work


STEP 4: Writing the essay

After students have identified the content to include in their papers and organized it by main ideas (arguments), they can begin writing an essay. During this stage, many teachers begin class with a mini-lesson focused on a particular aspect of writing, such as using transitions or writing in a formal voice. Then students can apply these lessons to their own writing.


(Task 10) Writing an introduction: Sample worksheet

Suggested teaching strategy: Inverted pyramid, Sentence-strip paragraphs

Directions: Check off each step as you complete it.


__ Step 1: Write a hook for your paper.
__ Step 2: List background information you will include in your introductory paragraph.
The purpose of this essay is for you to explain, in your own words/opinion, what contributed to the desegregation of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. Imagine your reader is an alien from outer space who has never heard of Central High School or Little Rock, Arkansas. What is most important for them to know in order to understand your essay? (Refer to Tasks 3 and 4 for ideas on how to answer these questions.)
Basic facts I will include in my introductory paragraph

1.
2.


3.
4.
5.

Use this information to write the middle of your introduction. (Approximately 2-4 sentences.)


__ Step 3: Write your thesis at the end of your introductory paragraph.

__ Step 4: Have an editor review your introduction.


Name of editor _____________________________________________

Write one or two things the author does well in this introduction:

1.

2.

Write one or two things the author can do to improve this introduction:



1.

2.

Use this feedback when writing your second draft.


(Task 11) Writing body paragraphs – Sample worksheet

Teaching strategy: Sentence-strip paragraphs, Using graphic organizers, Adding transitions
__ Step one: Use the information on your outline to write a body paragraph. If you are unsure how to organize your ideas, here is a basic structure you can follow:
Sentence 1 = Main idea (State an argument that supports your thesis)
Sentences 2-5 = Evidence (cite sources) + Analysis (How does the evidence support your argument?)
. There are many ways to provide evidence and support your main idea (argument). Below are two examples of how your body paragraph might be organized. Of course, if you have more than two pieces of evidence to support your argument, your body paragraph will be longer than 6 sentences.

Example one:

Sentence 2 = Evidence to support argument

Sentence 3 = Analysis explaining evidence

Sentence 4 = Another piece of evidence to support argument

Sentence 5 = Analysis explaining evidence

(You can add more evidence and analysis if you have it.)


Example two:

Sentence 2 = Evidence to support argument

Sentence 3 = Another piece of evidence to support argument

Sentence 4 = Third piece of evidence to support argument

Sentence 5 = Analysis explaining how this evidence supports the

argument
Sentence 6 = Link (Remind your readers how the information in sentences 2-5 connects to your thesis.)


To help you remember this structure, think of the word MEAL:

Main idea

Evidence

Analysis

Link

__ Step 2: Have an editor review body paragraph one. Editor’s name: ______________


Write one or two things the author does well in this paragraph:

1.


2.
Write one or two things the author can do to improve this paragraph:

1.


2.

__ Step 3: Revise.

Repeat this process for all of your body paragraphs.

(Task 12) Writing a conclusion: Sample worksheet



Suggested teaching strategies: Text-to-text, text-to-self, text-to-world; Fishbowl; Big Paper
The purpose of the conclusion is to summarize your argument and to convince the reader that what s/he just read is important.
Step 1: Preparing to write your conclusion


  • How do the ideas in your paper connect to life today? What is the same? What may be different?



  • What would you like someone to learn from reading your essay?



  • What questions are on your mind after writing this essay?

Step 2: Writing your conclusion.


Here is a format you can follow when writing your conclusion
Sentence 1 = Transition + repeat thesis statement

Sentences 2-3 = Restate arguments

Sentences 3-5 = Why is this information important? Why should we care?
STEP 5: Revising, editing and reflecting

Give students the opportunity to receive feedback on their essays. Feedback can come from peers, from teachers, or from community members serving as “guest editors.” Students can also evaluate their own work. At the revision stage, feedback should be focused on improving the content and organization of the paper. Once this is in place, students can edit their papers for mechanics (grammar, spelling, etc).


(Task 13) Writing a second draft – Sample worksheet

Suggested teaching strategy: 3-2-1, Editing worksheets, Conferencing, Backwards outline, Read-alouds
Check off at least 3 “next steps” from this list. Refer to feedback from your classmates and other readers.
__ Add an interesting hook to the beginning of introduction

__ Add more information about the story of the desegregation of Central High School to the introduction

__ Clarify thesis

__ Add more transition words between paragraphs

__ Add more transition words between sentences in body paragraphs

__ Add further evidence to support body paragraph

__ Make sure all evidence is cited properly.

__ Explain how my evidence connects to my argument.

__ Add links – sentences that explain how arguments support the thesis

__ Add another argument to support my thesis

__ Remove information that does not support my thesis

__ Add more information to the conclusion on why this paper matters to me and/or others.

__ Restate my thesis in my conclusion.

__ Restate my arguments in my conclusion.



(Task 14) Reflecting on the process

Suggested teaching strategy: Exit card
Answer 3 of the questions below.


  1. What aspect of your paper makes you the most proud?

  2. What would you do differently next time? Why?

  3. After working on this paper, what have you learned about being a good writer and the writing process?

  4. What was the biggest challenge for you?

  5. What tools or activities helped you write this paper?

  6. What could you have done to help yourself write a better essay?

  7. What else could have helped you write a better paper? What other support would you have liked from your peers or teacher?

  8. What do you need to learn to take your writing to the next level?

  9. Do you think being able to present your ideas clearly in writing is important? Why or why not?

  10. What surprised you about writing this paper?



DRAFT – NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION


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