Day 6 . Monday, September 8th

Friday, September 3:  Daily Class Outline

Lesson Objectives

Today we work with the drafted responses (agree/disagree) to either Krugman's or Frank's articles in order to discuss how to develop better responses through revision. We also move on to a second type of response so that students add a differing focusing and developing technique to their repertoire. Throughout these efforts, we check their understanding of the readings and the issues, building their sense of the multiple perspectives and positions on the issue of consumerism and consumption in America, clarifying that the discussion is more complex than a simple pro-con debate. Today we also hold students accountable for their reading of the newspaper by asking them to bring in three clippings on issues they find provocative.


Connection to Course Goals

(1) Discussing revision (particularly of reasons and evidence) helps students develop a strong writing process and a critical eye for their own writing. It encourages them to write more focused and thoughtful responses, as opposed to a list of unsupported reactions. Discussion of more than one response type exposes students to the variety of focuses and approaches for developing papers that are available to them. (2) Careful reading and examination of multiple texts related to the issue of consumerism and consumption in America provides a model and illustration for processes students will apply independently to the topical issues they select for Portfolio 2. Distinguishing one article from another and coming to some deep understanding of the perspectives and approaches of the writers being analyzed will prepare students for their application of these principles to their own selected issues in Portfolios 2 and 3.


A Possible Sequence of Activities for Today

1. Introduce class session and take attendance.  
2. Discuss news clippings and a few of the topical issues they’re seeing in their reading of the NYT. Activity Ideas:  Discussing NYT News Clippings
3. Have students discuss their Agree/Disagree Responses. Activity Ideas:  Discussing Agree/Disagree Responses
4. Show students how to develop their agree/disagree responses with revision (particularly of reasons and evidence). Activity Ideas:  Revising Agree/Disagree Responses
5. Engage students in a mini-workshop on their Agree/Disagree Responses. Activity Ideas:  Mini-Workshop on Agree/Disagree Responses
6. Establish a conclusion for the class session and instruct students on where to access the homework assignment.

Activity Ideas:  Concluding and Assigning Homework


Assignment for Next Class Session

Ask students to complete the following for next class session:

  • Revise your Agree/Disagree Response according to what we discussed in class today.  Post your revised Agree/Disagree response to the forum on the Writing Studio.
  • Read Sharon Zukin's article, "We Are Where We Shop," and Mary Gordon's article, "We Are All Spendthrifts Now."  Choose one article and write a complete summary of it to bring to the next class session.

Additional Teaching Resources

As we progress farther into Portfolio 1, help teaching the writing process can be found at Teaching the Writing Process (University of Texas) or Teaching the Writing Process (Dartmouth).

At this point, hopefully your students are participating more freely in class discussions.  You can continue to learn more about Leading a Discusion and what to do when We Want Students to Talk, But What if Their Answers Are Wrong?

For insight into the connection between reading and writing and how to help students get the most out of reading assignments, visit Getting Students to Read:  Fourteen Tips and Using Reading in the Writing Classroom.