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Taking Elaboration to the Next Level

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Keywords: elaboration, writing, highlighting, identifying
Subject(s): Writing, Reading, English/Language Arts
Grades 8 through 12
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
View Full Text of Standards
School: Brethren Jr Sr High School, Brethren, MI
Planned By: Rachel Edmondson
Original Author: Rachel Edmondson, Brethren
Mrs. Rachel Edmondson, Brethren High School, English 10
Taking Elaboration to the Next Level

To create and identify support and elaboration;
To give a visual element to the students to better understand how elaboration is formed and flows.

State Curriculum/Common Core State Standards: RL. 9-10/11-12.1: Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
W.9-10.9a: Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research;
W.9-10.2b: Develop the topic with well-chosen, relevant, and sufficient facts, extended definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples appropriate to the audienceís knowledge of the topic.

Materials: Elmo Document Camera [digital wish]; SMART Board (if necessary); three varied colors of highlighters (I use pink, yellow, and green); lined college-ruled paper; ACT Model "6" prompt

Look at a paragraph model from a ď6Ē ACT essay. Turn our attention back to the poster we looked at and wrote out the previous class period.

Using the poster (and/or the handout from a couple class periods ago), letís go through and highlight the elaboration as an entire class. Taking it sentence by sentence, students will call out whether itís a pink [fact], yellow [detail], or green [commentary/analysis] sentence.

In partners, students will receive the next body paragraph from the same ACT model essay and theyíll highlight all together. Once they have finished, they will present their findings to the class using the Elmo document camera.

Write a well-elaborated response to the following prompt: Evaluate the importance of evidence Atticus uses during the trial of Tom Robinson.

Switch papers (responses) with someone else and highlight according to fact, detail, and commentary.

Iíll [teacher] choose a couple to share with the whole class on the Elmo document camera as I circulate around the room.

Test/Quiz: None at this time.

Assignment: Begin brainstorming for your To Kill a Mockingbird Essay.

The key to this is scaffolding and building the lessons prior to this up to this point.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Ultimately, this highlighting strategy can be used in any classroom that wants their students to identify and check the elaboration in their writing.
Continue highlighting short responses, Essay Body paragraphs, etc. individually, in pairs, or as a small group.
Links: "Senior Year Itch" Model 6 Essay
Materials: Mobile Labs
Other Items: 1 Elmo Document Camera, $985 each, total of $985.00