backReturn to Unit 3: MWF

Unit 3, Day 37:  Monday, November 12


What you’ll do today in class:


-         Collect Position Analysis

-         Discuss using live sources

-         Introduce types of claims

-         Practice unpacking claims

-         Discuss expectations for evidence based on claims

-         Introduce Evaluative Annotated Bibliography


Connection to course goals:  The main goal of this class is to show students that the choices they make in regard to claims and evidence are influenced by the context they are defining for writing in Essay 4.  Today’s class also asks students to consider different types of sources and how they can use those sources in writing their papers.




1.      Collect your copy of the Position Analysis and explain to students that you’ll be giving them comments via email by Friday (5 minutes):  Remind students to check their email at home Friday and over the weekend if they have access.  Explain to students that you will be available in the classroom on Friday for optional conferences if they want feedback beyond your written comments.  Also have students let you know today whether they want you to email your comments or whether they’ll come to pick them up at conference.  For students who do not have email access, ask for their names and type comments that you can give to those students during conference.




2.      Discuss using “live sources” (10 minutes): Plan a discussion that shows students how they might use live sources as another form of evidence in supporting their overall claim in Essay 4.  Cover strategies for conducting interviews and questionnaires that are addressed in the PHG reading.  Ask them to think of ways to use the web to find live sources (i.e. discussion forums, chat-rooms, using schools’ web sites if their research involves schools, etc.).  Also, have students briefly consider how live sources might be useful as evidence for their paper, given what they wrote in their Position Analysis.  (e.g. How could they incorporate live sources?  Which types of live sources seem like they might fit?  How might their audience affect their use of live sources?  What live sources would their audience consider credible?)




3.      Introduce different types of claims from the reading (10 minutes):  Design a discussion that highlights for students the need to have a claim that is debatable and to understand the expectations that come with different types of claims they might use.  Have students identify the types of claims addressed in the PHG reading (fact, cause-effect, value, solution) and how each type implies certain expectations for supporting it.


4.      Practice unpacking sample claims (7-10 minutes): Prepare a sample claim or two that you can unpack as a class to prepare students for the group activity.  For instance, a claim of solution may work especially well because typically it will imply a claim of value as well (i.e. one solution is better than other options).


5.      Discuss what claims imply about development, reasoning, and evidence (7-10 minutes):  Ask students to consider what types of evidence or what types of things they’ll need to prove based on the types of claims they might have.  For example, a claim of evaluating would necessitate a list of criteria, while a claim of solution would likely require evidence to prove both that a problem exists and that this solution would work or is better than other possibilities.  Also, remind students that types of claims will suggest different types of proof. The PHG is set up to focus on different types of claims in different chapters:


Type of claim              Chapter

Value                           "Evaluating"

Solution/policy  "Problem-solving"

Cause-effect                 "Cause-effect"

Fact                             "Informing"


6.      Introduce the Evaluative Annotated Bibliography assignment (5 minutes):  Explain to students that the purpose of writing this evaluative annotated bibliography is get them to consider how they will use the sources they already have and what further research they’ll need to complete in order to make their argument.  For example, completing an annotated bibliography often shows students that some of the sources don’t work for their context and argument.  Give students oral instructions or a handout that explains these expectations: the annotated bibliography should summarize 6 sources and make a judgment about how each would be useful in helping them write their paper. Also, remind students to record the bibliographic information and keep notes for each source they have now or find over break.  Let them know the bibliography will be due the Monday they return from break.


-         Provide a sample evaluative annotated bibliography entry for students:


Males, Mike.  “Who Us?  Stop Blaming Kids and TV.”  The Progressive  October

1997:  25-27.

Males argues that ultimately we should not place the blame for youth violence on kids or media, but on parents.  He challenges the argument from more conservative participants such as William Bennett that exposure to violence has a direct link to violent actions from youths. The author concludes that our society’s efforts would be better spent in actively addressing  the problems of the “millions of children and teenagers [who] face real destitution, drug abuse, and violence in their homes” rather than developing new technologies such as the V-chip.  The article provides a number of statistics to back up his argument but he does not cite his sources or provide a reference list.  Although the author shows a strong bias in favor of social support for our youth without addressing possible benefits of technologies, this is a good source to represent a position that contrasts those who argue for a more direct media-violence link.






Assignment for Day 38:


-         Read “Documenting Sources:  MLA” in PHG (583-592).

-         Bring all of the sources you have for your paper to class Wednesday.

-         Hold onto your second copy of your Position Analysis and bring it back to class on Wednesday.