This is a non-fiction ELA unit based on orcas that can be tied to the film Blackfish. The unit has pre-reading activities to get students interested in the activity. It includes highly structured MLA citation help (appropriate for the 7th and 8th grade level--which is generally being exposed to MLA for the first time). It includes: a visual pre-reading game, pre-reading group questions, survey, deeper reading analysis, plenty of margin space for the annotation of the article, "The Killer in the Pool" by Tim Zimmerman (found on the web), text structure analysis from the inverted pyramid, pros and cons chart, Blackfish movie notes and question space, and thesis statement sentence frames.
My students were highly engaged from this structured lesson.