Reflection: Lesson Planning Identifying Your Cause and Effect Research Interest through “Factoids” and Presenting a Research Proposal - Section 2: Guided Practice: Browsing for Controversy


Over the many years that I have taught high school, I have always struggled with the idea of the "controversy" research project.  These types of assignments seem ubiquitous all throughout high school English departments everywhere.  In fact, in every one of the five schools I have taught in, the curriculum had a "controversy" project of some sort  -- you know the assignment about an "issue" and the students choose, like, abortion, gun control, animal testing, or legalizing marijuana.  

Students frequently tread the same ground over and over and over.  The "controversies" come to seem like they are merely "packaged."  Also, I find it inherently artificial to give students a list -- even one as rich as the one found at the Yahoo Directory -- and ask them "to pick" something as if they are picking out a pair of shoes or a soft drink.

That being said, I have shared these reservations with students in the past, and a few have responded by telling me that they enjoyed learning about a controversial topic that they never would have happened upon otherwise.

I think, finally though, the concept of studying a "controversy" is an easy one to communicate -- this ISSSUE has these CAUSES and we might provide these SOLUTIONS.  The sequence of thought (maybe the scaffolding?) is clear and accessible. 

  reflection re: the merits (or not) of a "list" of "controversies"
  Lesson Planning: reflection re: the merits (or not) of a "list" of "controversies"
Loading resource...

Identifying Your Cause and Effect Research Interest through “Factoids” and Presenting a Research Proposal

Unit 6: Writing a Cause & Effect (Researched Essay)
Lesson 1 of 5

Objective: SWBAT consider a variety of possible topics for cause and effect research, as well as develop a tentative "research question."

Big Idea: ... startling facts or "factiods" compel us to want to know more! ...

  Print Lesson
2 teachers like this lesson
c e flowchart
Similar Lessons
TED Talk on The Power of Fiction to Combat Identity Politics
11th Grade ELA » Exploring Identity
Big Idea: The power of multimedia can provide the image and audio inspiration to jump start a lengthy writing assignment.
Los Angeles, CA
Environment: Urban
Martha Soto
American Romanticism: Ralph Waldo Emerson
11th Grade ELA » The Individual and the Transcendentalists
Big Idea: Emerson lauds the benefits of being an individual.
Taunton, MA
Environment: Suburban
Julie Ferreira
An Introduction to Viking Culture
12th Grade ELA » Beowulf
Big Idea: How does audience determine purpose in a text?
Whitehall, MT
Environment: Rural
Caitlin  Chiller
Something went wrong. See details for more info
Nothing to upload