To discuss the P1B articles in depth by generating summary points for the P1B articles and exploring student responses to them.
Working through the main ideas of the P1B articles as a class emphasizes both critical reading skills and the importance of carrying over and continuing to develop students’ summary-writing skills; discussing student responses to the articles helps students get started thinking about their own P1B essays as well as highlighting the ongoing conversation occurring about the issues raised in the P1B articles.
Transition: Develop a transition here.
The goal of this discussion is to outline each article's purpose, audience, context and main ideas. Tell students that they should take notes on this discussion since they'll need to write a summary of one of the P1B articles.
You should outline the information for each article on the board in the same fashion we used for the P1A articles on Day 4. Ask: What are the context, audience and purpose for each of these articles? What other main ideas or arguments do the authors provide? Have a list of each article's main points ready to help prompt discussion, but encourage students to come up with the ingredients of summaries for the articles on their own as much as possible.
An alternative activity to try here might be to have students work in small groups to draft a short summary of one of the P1B articles. Provide each group with an overhead and a marker and ask them to use what they remember about academic summary as they prepare their drafts. Give groups about ten minutes to work up their summaries, then ask a couple of groups to share their drafts (try to look at one summary of each article). Have the class use their notes on academic summary to review the examples generated in class, making sure to highlight connections to purpose, audience, and context as they come up. Try to keep this discussion light-hearted, and remind students that since these are only drafts of summaries of the P1B articles, they will want to write and carefully develop their own summaries as part of P1B. Note: If you do this activity, you will need more time and will have to choose another place in today's lesson to cut down.
Sample Transition: "Now that we've established the key summary points, let's move into response. Please take out your homework responses."
Here we are trying to get students to look at the effectiveness of each writer's argument. We want students to begin to locate the strengths and shortfalls of each article.
Begin with a general discussion. Call on a few students and ask them what they wrote about. Which article did they find more persuasive and why? During this conversation, try not to put students on the spot by questioning or criticizing their ideas. Right now, you're just getting a feel for how they initially reacted.
After some general discussion, you might put students into groups to share their responses and develop them further. You could create two groups for each article and place students in groups according to how they responded. For example, if students thought article X was more persuasive, put them in an article X group and have them discuss why. Or, have them focus on why they did NOT find article Y to be as persuasive. Do the same with those who wrote about article Y. Encourage students to use the terminology for an evaluative response (purpose, audience, clarity of ideas, evidence, logic, tone, etc…). And require them to support their ideas with clear examples from the text. Finally, explain that one student should keep notes and the group should plan on presenting their findings to the class.
Transition: Develop a transition here.
Here each group should present their ideas to the class. You might have them present formally in front of the class; or, you might lead a discussion and call on groups as your "expert groups"; or, you might engage students in a mini-debate on who was more persuasive. If you choose to have a debate, ask article X fans to sit on one side of the room and article Y fans sit on the other side. Ask each side to offer a persuasive idea (from the article); then encourage the other side to refute it, using textual evidence or their own logic. However you choose to conduct this activity is fine. The goal is to encourage students to think critically about the strengths and shortfalls of each article and to support their findings with clear textual examples.
Write a conclusion for class. You might ask students to conclude the class by summarizing what was covered for today and reminding them about upcoming due dates.