Reviews are a staple of scholastic journalism! This lesson plan is designed to teach scholastic journalists standards and techniques for writing successful reviews. The lesson may be completed in a 2-hour block, or its individual activities may be presented over three 40-minute class sessions.
This lesson plan includes:
• Detailed instructor lecture notes and guidelines for large group discussion, conveniently noted in red throughout the text.
• Opportunities for large-group and small-group peer activities.
• A printable handout.
• A worksheet to use as a homework assignment/assessment, and as the basis for writing an original review.
The objective of the lesson plan is to introduce and analyze a range of reviews; explore their value to readers; identify topics/categories for worthwhile reviews; characterize the elements of a successful review; and present writing techniques for clear, descriptive critical evaluations of value to readers.
This lesson plan aligns with Standards for English Language Arts set forth by the National Council of Teachers of English. It may be used alone to help scholastic journalists gain a better understanding of writing reviews; or, it may be used as a component in a more comprehensive unit about a range of Opinion Writing formats.
NCTE Standards met:
4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.
5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
6. Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and non-print texts.
7. Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print and non-print texts, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.
8. Students use a variety of technological and information resources (e.g., libraries, databases, computer networks, video) to gather and synthesize information and to create and communicate knowledge.
11. Students participate as knowledgeable, reflective, creative, and critical members of a variety of literacy communities.
12. Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).