The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis

The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
The National Anthem and the N.F.L.: Practice with Synthesis
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  1. The most important skill AP English Language teachers can impart is how to read, assess, and manipulate resources to synthesize information. The College Board's AP English exam counts a synthesis essay task as a third of its free response score. College-bound students benefit from learning how to re
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  2. Baseball, football, basketball, soccer, and boxing are represented in this mega bundle of sports-themed extended lessons. The ethics of sports, politics, injuries, identities, and responsibilities of premier athletes as role models are covered. Students will read, view, write about and discuss sport
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This lesson is designed to encourage students to write with greater profundity when analyzing an author’s choices regarding argument, appeals and other rhetorical choices.” Students will read and view supporting clips on the topic of National Football League players kneeling during the National Anthem, in protest of injustice towards African Americans in the United States. Students will learn the necessary elements to analyze the argument. Students will show mastery of the standards at the end of the lesson through a SOAPSTONE Analysis, Socratic discussion, short paragraph responses and a written timed synthesis essay scored on an AP style rubric.

The unit begins with a study of the Atlantic Monthly article, “Kneeling for Life and Liberty Is Patriotic.” by Conor Friedersdorf. The TED TALK, “When I sing the anthem,” by Albert Lee is used in this resource. Links to different NPR, New York Times articles and videos showing the issue of the National Anthem and the NFL protest. There is a lesson on rhetorical situation in op-ed “Eric Reid: Why Colin Kaepernick and I Decided to Take a Knee.” All the lessons act as an explication and a building of context for understanding the issue of the National Anthem and protest. There is a New York Times Room for Debate series on Americans and the American symbols at sporting events. These op-eds are used for Socratic Seminar and written assessment.


These lessons fit any Honors Literature class, Pre-AP, American Literature, AP English Language or Literature class to prepare students for AP English Language exams, Common Core extended response assessments, American Literature Course exams, the SAT and ACT essay and critical thinking activities.

There are sources for teaching the Socratic Seminar, as the lessons act as explication for the argument. The packet includes complete lessons, Common Core standards, essential and key questions.

Total Pages
25 pages
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
1 Week
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