Informational Writing Unit on Global Warming | CCSS Topic Based Unit

Rated 4.9 out of 5, based on 10 reviews
10 Ratings
Kim Tighe
Grade Levels
2nd - 4th
Formats Included
  • PDF
106 pages
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Kim Tighe

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Looking for something to spice up your informational writing unit that aligns with the shifts in the Common Core State Standards?

Your students will absolutely love this topic-based unit on GLOBAL WARMING! This unique cross-curricular, topic-based unit consists primarily of:

  • teaching close reading strategies,
  • reading, thinking, and responding to text opportunities, and
  • teaching informational writing skills

all while applying those skills in integrated reading and writing lessons about a real world controversial issue.

In this unit, your students will learn, read, watch videos, do a science experiment, write, complete performance tasks, read and respond, and create an informational pamphlet about many aspects of global warming:

  • what it is
  • the causes of global warming
  • the effects it is having on the earth
  • how individuals can help
  • two varying perspectives on the topic (negative outcomes and positive outcomes)

Since this unit was designed with the Common Core shifts in mind, it is meant to be rigorous, as well as an opportunity for critical thinking and real world application. In my classroom, I used this topic-based unit in place of Lucy Calkin’s Informational Writing Unit, so some of the items in this unit are closely related to Lucy’s work, as well.

Another plus to this unit is that the resources included are versatile, and they can be used at your discretion depending on the needs and interests of your students and the amount of time you are allotting for teaching this unit.

Why use a topic-based approach?

Although the texts and concepts are challenging, the great thing about a topic-based approach is that by front-loading vocabulary and sticking with the same topic all throughout teaching a specific set of skills, the kids become VERY invested and passionate about that topic. This allows them the opportunity to read and understand significantly more complex texts and concepts! Second graders at all levels and with different English Language Learning proficiencies in my classroom were able to access this information and they were SO engaged in it. For the rest of the school year, they begged to go back to writing about global warming! They just could not get enough.


  • Teacher's guide with tips and tricks
  • List of Common Core State Standards addressed in this unit
  • 30 days worth of mini lesson ideas and plans with a "lessons at a glance" suggested calendar map
  • Informational writing rubric that can be used for assessing the final product
  • Bulletin board display pictures and materials to create your own bulletin board of your learning and writing process that include: description cards, accent graphics, and a “coming soon” sign
  • Global warming informational pamphlet (this is the final product!)
  • Vocabulary word cards with definitions
  • Science experiment nonfiction mini text and lab report printable
  • 3-2-1 response graphic organizers
  • 3 close reading informational texts with question sets to guide close reading skills, vocabulary development, and concept development
  • A wide range of engaging brief writing performance tasks that align with each close reading passage ("quick writes")
  • Individual and peer editing writing checklists
  • Writing celebration invitations

I hope that if you choose to purchase this unit, your kiddos become as fired up, passionate, and motivated about this complex, real world issue as my second graders did!

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Total Pages
106 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
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