American Revolution Opinion Writing Unit: Patriots or Loyalists?

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Grade Levels
4th - 6th, Homeschool
Resource Type
Formats Included
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  • Google Apps™
50 pages
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American Revolution Opinion Writing Unit: Editorial Supporting the Patriots or Loyalists (PDF & Google Slides)

In this integrated unit, students read excerpts from Patriot and Loyalist primary sources in order to understand the arguments on both sides. Students analyze these arguments in order to decide which has the most convincing argument. Students then write an opinion essay supporting the side they chose.

The unit can be used as a summative assessment for the early Revolutionary War period, as well as a opinion writing piece.

This unit integrates studying about the American Revolution into a lesson on primary sources and opinion writing. This unit can be easily differentiated to meet the needs of their students (suggestions are included in the lesson plans).

This is a complete unit that includes everything needed. The resource in included in both PDF format and Google Slides.


Students begin the unit with a discussion of the writing assignment. They explore primary sources featuring arguments from both Patriots and Loyalists. 20 task cards are included with excerpts from documents. Students summarize the arguments on a note sheet.

Students then analyze the arguments and sort them into categories on an anchor chart. Each student decides whether the Patriots or Loyalists have the most convincing argument, then uses the graphic organizers to write an editorial (opinion essay) supporting the chosen side.

Other resources are included: student project checklist, social studies rubric, and opinion writing rubric.


Everything needed to publish an editorial is included - just print and go! This resource includes:

  • Suggested Lesson Plans, including suggested ways to differentiate activities
  • Suggested Standards Covered
  • Project Direction Page
  • 20 Primary Source Task Cards
  • Task Cards Notes Page
  • Anchor Chart (printable pieces) for Patriots vs. Loyalists
  • Student Anchor Chart Page for Patriots vs. Loyalists
  • Preplanning Page
  • Opinion Writing Organizer
  • Peer Editing Page
  • Student Final Project Checklist
  • Opinion Rubric
  • Social Studies Rubric

The length this lesson takes will depend upon how long students take to plan and write their essays. I estimate 1 - 2 weeks of 30 minutes sessions. This unit would work best after students have learned about the Patriots and Loyalists in a social studies lesson.

Teachers should adapt this project as needed to fit their grade level and student ability-levels.


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Total Pages
50 pages
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
2 Weeks
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
Explain events, procedures, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text, including what happened and why, based on specific information in the text.
Integrate information from two texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.
Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
Explain the relationships or interactions between two or more individuals, events, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text based on specific information in the text.


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