Looking for a way to address both the persuasive writing and research components of the Common Core Standards? This lesson provides both of those.
Students are asked to complete a research project in which they examine a controversial issue in depth. They work through the year (or semester), completing a number of different due dates - both on their own and in cooperative groups (Project Teams). The idea? To have them become an EXPERT in a particular controversial issue and have them write a persuasive essay on the subject. At the end of the project, they are asked to present their findings to an audience. The project requires them to use a number of digital technologies (Prezi, PowerPoint, Kidblog, etc.) to present their findings both along the way and for the final presentation. There is also a service component in which students must propose a solution to their chosen issue.
Detailed "How-To" pages provide guidelines for using those technologies as well as how to approach the other various aspects of the project.
Students work in Project Teams - a term derived from the project management style of doing business. A "Project Teams Guide" is provided to facilitate this part of the project.
There is also a handout titled, "Topic, Issue, Question at Issue, Thesis - How to Get From a Topic to an Argument in Five Easy Steps!" to help students narrow their issue down into an arguable thesis statement. (This item can also be found as a separate document for sale at http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Topic-Issue-Question-at-Issue-Thesis-How-to-Get-from-a-Topic-to-an-Argument)
A list of controversial topics is included to help students begin to understand what a topic versus an issue is.
Grading rubrics are included - for grading their final folder and their oral presentation.
This updated version includes an FAQ page and a list of reliable resources.
The Appendix lists the Common Core Standards addressed in the project.
If you would like the student handouts as a Word document, message me and I will send them your way!
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.1 - a, b, c, d
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.4 - a, b