Included in this packet:
• Introduction and background as to why I developed this organizer.
• Step-by-step small group lesson plans for 8 days.
• 6 page graphic organizer for argumentative writing.
This is an argumentative writing organizer that my Read 180 students used this spring. My kids needed structure. Actually, they needed STRUCTURE! After using the Perfect Paragraph organizer all year to write their weekly argumentative paragraphs, I thought that they could easily write an actual argumentative essay. The first one, the one that we wrote together, went well. The second one, not so much, they were lost after the introduction. I was lost trying to help them edit and revise.
I found that not only does this organizer help them stay on track and focused, but it makes my editing and revising so much easier! Being able to see what they thought they were writing, helped me redirect them without asking them, “What the heck are you doing?” They were happier, because they could ask me questions like, “Does this evidence support this detail?” So much better than, “I don’t know what to write.”
This organizer is for a basic essay, but they can work from it to add their own enhancements without straying from the topic and structure. For example, good writers do not always close a paragraph with a concluding sentence. So, not every body paragraph has to have one. Good writers do not necessarily use three obvious transitions in every paragraph, but the organizer allows you to easily take one of their sentences and to teach them how to bury a transition. For our first two essays, we stuck to the organizer. As we moved into our next couple of essays, students started asking if they could add another sentence, or change the order. If they could explain their thinking and give me an example, of course they could! This is what I want them to do! The organizer is a starting point, not a restriction. At some point, the training wheels have to come off!