In a resource where students practice argument, students learn about the science behind Leonardo da Vinci’s The Mona Lisa. Students will read, listen to and view supporting clips while learning the necessary elements to analyze the argument about Da Vinci’s efforts at combining science and art. Students will show mastery of the standards at the end of the lesson through a rhetorical précis, a Socratic seminar, and a written timed rhetorical analysis essay scored on an AP style rubric.
The Atlantic Monthly excerpt from Walter Isaacson’s biography of Leonardo da Vinci, “The Science behind Mona Lisa’s Smile,” is the central text of this resource. A TED TALK, “The Search for the True Face of Leonardo,” by Siegfried Woldhek is utilized, as is an opportunity to write a rhetorical précis as well as supporting material for teaching this strategy to your students. Various interview with the author help the students understand the assessment tasks.
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.
Tags: Close Reading, writing, Pre-AP, critical thinking, Art, World Literature, argument