From Electric English...
These are clear, typed notes to introduce the ideas of diction and close reading of a text. Words! Words! Words! Getting students to understand that word choice is paramount to understanding a writer's purpose should be one of the ultimate goals for English teachers. This activity asks the students to make a close reading of Lincoln's, "Gettysburg Address" and analyze it for word choice using the LEAD method. This method asks students to look for low or elevated diction, abstract or concrete words, and denotation or connotation. I use this method with all of my students, from AP to co-taught classes. Some classes take longer to process the material than other classes, but ultimately I have found over the years that all students benefit from the process. Make it work for you!!
NOTE: I am also posting a similar activities for close reading of The Gettysburg Address. It is really just a matter of which you prefer.... Sometimes, I even double up and ask the students to revisit certain pieces and do both. Especially if you need a short activity for those half days or counselor days :)