always, remember to introduce and conclude your lessons with previews
and reviews. Use transitions to maintain a connection between
daily classroom activities, assignments, and portfolio and course
Decide how you want
to conduct the workshop for students' academic audience arguments.
You may conduct a full in-class workshop as we did for Portfolio
1. If you are running short on class time, you can create
an out-of-class workshop to be done on a forum, via email, or
even using the Chat Room feature in the Writing Studio.
See the Appendix for
workshop questions and guidelines.
Backwards Outline Workshop
to the analysis activity offered in Week 11, you can engage Students
in a Backwards Outline Workshop; students can apply this to their
own writing or to a partner's:
a sheet of paper, write down your or the author's main claim or
the controlling idea in the essay. Divide the rest of the paper
into three columns. Then complete the following tasks, one by
the left-hand column, write a brief summary of the content and
purpose of each paragraph (e.g. Suzy Q example to support argument
about body image). If there are two distinct ideas or purposes
in the paragraph, write a brief phrase for each.
the middle column, write a sentence that explains the connection
between what this paragraph says/does and the overall claim at
the top. If you don't know or it isn't clear, write a question
the third column, write a sentence that explains the connection
between the paragraphs (i.e. paragraph one and paragraph two;
paragraph two and paragraph three, and so on). If there is no
clear connection, put a question mark in the third column.
changes need to be made to improve the focus, development or organization
of the argument? Does the body clearly develop what the
claim promises? Does the claim need to be revised?
Where there are question marks, how will you improve the transitions?
Have students read
over the guidelines for the public audience argument. Highlight
the concept of revision (you can connect this back to Portfolio
1) and the new expectations and limitations that accompany their
new writing situation.
Explain that the analysis
of a publication will serve as a foundation for the choices they
will make when they revise their academic audience arguments for
their public ones.
Generate Public Contexts
Audience and Context for Arguments. Use this activity to
model approaches to choosing a publication and audience. Ask two
or three students to put their claims up on the board (ask for
volunteers - try pitching it as "free help" with their
essay). Then, check to see if these claims are narrow and debatable
(you may not have had time to look over the academic audience
arguments yet). If they aren't, have students revise them to meet
this criterion. If they are, use them as models for argumentation.
Ask the class to brainstorm a list of possible audiences for each
these points as a guide for this discussion:
at the claim and ask - who needs to hear this argument?
would be most interested in this argument?
would be the most realistic audience to target (those who would
actually read it and be affected by it)?
how the argument would look differently based on each group of
readers and their various needs and interests.
might these different readers encounter this argument? Where
would they be likely to read about it?
is the best way to reach this audience (web or print form)?
students have difficulty generating specific contexts, tell them
they'll need to do more research in this area to find out which
contexts are available. One way to do learn about contexts is
to look back at the journals they encountered when researching
their issues in Portfolio 2. Also, tell them to do some topic
searches to find out where their issue is being talked about.
goal in this activity is to set students up for finding a good
publication with which to work and to prepare them for the Context
Comparison they will do next week.
to the discussions you have been having about the use of visual
rhetoric in the NYT and bring in
a few examples (from the NYT, magazines or Web sites) to illustrate
how some writers use illustrations to support their arguments.
Pass these around in class:
Overall, remember that
our primary goal is to see the revision choices students make
with their words, but since we live in such a visually-oriented
society, we also want them to be aware of and try their hands
at incorporating visual rhetoric in their work.
Be sure to spend time
explaining how students can use the basic functions in Word like
inserting text boxes. You can use the following as the most
If you want to create
a text box with writing in it or insert a picture/image into a
text box to place within your writing, be sure your "drawing"
tool bar is open in Word (this is the one that has auto shapes
and a paint can on it). Then click on the icon that looks like
piece of paper with typing on it around the letter 'A.' This should
allow you to choose the type of text box you want (in older versions
of Word, your cursor will turn into a + that you size however
you want by holding down the left button on your mouse). Once
you create the box, you can type call out quotes in it or copy/paste
images. If you right click on the box's outline, a new menu should
appear. In this menu, choose "format text box" and you'll get
a whole new set of choices for wrapping text, bringing text "forward"
(over the text box), coloring the text box, etc.
We recommend telling students to play around with this WITH A
SAVED DOCUMENT until they figure out to what extent they want
to use this feature.
points to cover in as you introduce this concept include:
does the visual (whether it's a graph, photo, chart, icon or cartoon)
further the written argument?
does the placement of the visual relate to the written material?
Describe how the visual
augments the argument's strength.
When might visuals be
As you discuss visual rhetoric, be
sure to CSOW. Ask students to brainstorm options for incorporating
visual elements into their papers. How might students use visual
rhetoric to further their arguments for a public audience?
They might think of something as complex as creating a table to
display data or something as simple as a bulleted list to simplify
a complex set of solutions, for instance, for a reader.
Let them know, too, that the type of visual rhetoric they choose
should resemble the visual rhetoric used in the publication they
Broaden students' knowledge
of possible publications they could choose to use to some of the
magazines (beyond more general-audience magazines such as People,
Newsweek and U.S. News and World Report) that may offer articles
on important current issues:
Parents or Parenting
The Chronicle of Higher
The Weekly Standard
Earth Island Journal
Christian Science Monitor
York Times Magazine
*Note that this list is by no means
comprehensive and that students can peruse online journals as
well as those found in hard copy.
the day’s activities (3 minutes)
you or a student does this, take special care to make clear their
connection to both Portfolio 2 and larger course goals. Take care
to provide some sort of conclusion to each class.