Middle School Writing and The Common Core State Standards
Students in middle school are expected to write informational, explanatory, opinion and argument writing pieces. The Common Core State Standards clearly outline what is expected of students at each grade level. The Common Core State Standards can be found at www.corestandards.org/
Middle School Students Learn About The Elements of an Opinion and Argument
When teaching students how to write and argument piece, students should be exposed to the elements of an argument. The definition of an argument is a reason or reasons why you are for or against something. Educators and parents can identify these elements in text. Teaching students to use content specific words also increases their academic vocabulary. When students make a claim, they need to think about evidence. Evidence is an essential part of argument writing.
- Claim-The position or assertion that supports an argument
- Evidence-Facts or reasons that support the claim
- Warrant-Reasoning that connects evidence to the claim
In middle school students need to make a:
- Counterclaim-The opposing position
- Rebuttal-Logical reasons for the rejection of the counterclaim
Middle School Students Can Read Books About Arguments
A book that contains information regarding arguments about the climate is Climate Change. Myths and Controversies takes a look at some of the most popular arguments against climate change and why they are only myths. Teachers and students can read this text and examine some of the popular arguments.
Informational and Explanatory Writing in Middle School
Students are required to write informative/explanatory texts, including the narration of historical events. Students can closely read informational text and write about it. An example of an an informational text that students can read is, The Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
Students should be encouraged to use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary when writing about or explaining the topic. Students can reference the text and create a domain-specific vocabulary word bank to help assist them with their writing.
by Roben Alarcon
After problems developed with the Articles of Confederation, America’s leaders wrote the U.S. Constitution. Although our founding fathers were happy with their work on the Constitution, it was missing an important part. The Bill of Rights was soon added to protect individual American rights.
Connecting To The Common Core State Standards
Text Types and Purposes
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1 Write arguments focused on discipline-specific content.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1a Introduce claim(s) about a topic or issue, acknowledge and distinguish the claim(s) from alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1b Support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant, accurate data and evidence that demonstrate an understanding of the topic or text, using credible sources.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1c Use words, phrases, and clauses to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1d Establish and maintain a formal style.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1e Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2 Write informative/explanatory texts, including the narration of historical events, scientific procedures/ experiments, or technical processes.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2a Introduce a topic clearly, previewing what is to follow; organize ideas, concepts, and information into broader categories as appropriate to achieving purpose; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2b Develop the topic with relevant, well-chosen facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2c Use appropriate and varied transitions to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among ideas and concepts.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2d Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2e Establish and maintain a formal style and objective tone.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2f Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the information or explanation presented.
Production and Distribution of Writing
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.5 With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.7 Conduct short research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question), drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions that allow for multiple avenues of exploration.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, using search terms effectively; assess the credibility and accuracy of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.9Write arguments focused on discipline-specific content
Range of Writing
- CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for reflection and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.
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