Stage 1- Desired Results
Students will be able to independently use their learning to…
  1. Demonstrate independence in reading complex texts, and writing and speaking about them.
  2. Build a strong base of knowledge through content rich texts.
  3. Obtain, synthesize, and report findings clearly and effectively in response to task and purpose.
  4. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
  5. Read, write, and speak grounded in evidence.
  6. Use technology and digital media strategically and capably.
  7. Come to understand other perspectives and cultures through reading, listening, and collaborations.
  • W.1.1-Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure.
  • W.1.5-With guidance and support from adults, focus on a topic, respond to questions and suggestions from peers, and add details to strengthen writing as needed.
  • L.1.1-Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
  • L.1.2-Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
  • RL.1.3-Describe characters, settings, and major events in a story using key details.
Essential Questions

  • How can persuasive writing be crafted so it motivates and influences a reaction from its audience?

  • What are the techniques of persuasive writing?
  • How can a writer effectively hook their audience?
  • How will a writer close their argument?
Big Ideas
Our Opinions

Enduring Understandings
  • Writers write to tell their opinions and try to persuade others.
  • There is a craft to writing effectively.

  • Authors use specific strategies to persuade readers.
  • I can study the work of authors to help learn the craft of writing.
Students will know…

  • What it means to persuade your reader.
  • How to state an opinion clearly in the opening sentences of an opinion piece
  • How to provide reasons to support opinion
  • How to write a concluding sentence
  • How to use a variety of sentence types to enhance their writing
  • How to use an editing and revising checklist to improve draft and prepare it for publishing
Students will be skilled at …

  • Writing an opinion piece
  • Introducing the topic or name the book they are writing about
  • Stating an opinion about the topic
  • Supplying a reason for the opinion
  • Providing some sense of closure.
  • Using frequently occurring conjunctions.
  • Producing and expanding complete simple and compound declarative sentences.
  • Working with a partner to revise andedit.
  • Publishing a piece of opinion writing.
Stage 2- Assessment Evidence
Performance Tasks: Students revise and edit one opinion author study.

Formative: Students complete graphic organizer supplying opinion and reasons to plan for final opinion piece.

Summative: Students complete editing checklist on final piece. Final piece of writing serves as summative.

Student Self-Assessment: At the end of the unit, students will write a reflection piece on what they have learned about opinion writing. See suggestions for self-assessment at the end of units.
Stage 3- Learning Plan
The Common Core State Standards call for a new focus on opinion writing, listing it first of the three types of writing. This unit uses an author study as a vehicle for opinion writing. Students will develop opinions about an author’s books and cite reasons for their opinions using these stories. This unit does not contain lessons on the differences between fact and opinion. Teachers may want to add lessons covering this topic.
Ezra Jack Keats was selected as the focus of the author study because he writes stories that contain ordinary, everyday experiences that a first grade child can easily make connections with. Keats’ story, Peter’s Chair, is located in Unit 4 of Scott Foresman. His other books may be found in your school library, classroom library, or public library. If you wish, these lessons could easily be adapted for another favorite author of your choice.

The primary stories that will be used throughout this unit will be: Ezra Jack Keats:
The SnowyDay
Peter’s Chair
Whistle for Willie

NOTE: For more success with your students, and to expedite the lessons, read aloud (or start to read) the Keats’ texts before beginning this unit.
This unit concludes with having students illustrate their opinion pieces and publish them by displaying the pieces.

Lesson 1: Define Opinion (W.1.1)
Lesson 2: Stating an Opinion (W.1.1)
Lesson 3: Support an Opinion 1 (W.1.1; L.1.1.g)
Lesson 4: Support an Opinion 2 (W.1.1; L.1.1.g)
Lesson 5: Which Book and Why? (W.1.1; L.1.1.g)
Lesson 6: Reasons: Feelings and Thoughts Peter’s Chair (W.1.1; L.1.1.g)
Lesson 7: Reasons: Characters and Events Peter’s Chair (W.1.1;L.1.1.g)
Lesson 8. Graphic Organizer: Topic and Reasons (W.1.1;L.1.1.g
Lesson 9: Graphic Organizer: Closure (W.1.1;L.1.1.g
Lesson 10: Drafting an Opinion Piece (W.1.1; L.1.1.g)
Lesson 11: Using a Checklist (W.1.1; W.1.5)

Full Lessons:
To incorporate the Common Core State Standard 1.W.6, to "use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing," you may choose to:
  • Take digital photographs of shared experiences.
  • Create a PowerPoint of writing with voice recordings.
  • Use story-making applications from iPads or other tablets.
  • Type final projects-use WORD publishing forms such as postcards and brochures.
  • Share writing over school announcement system.
  • Have students project the written pieces using a document camera.