Thanks, Aristotle! Using Argument To Your Advantage

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SWBAT continue their exploration of ethos, pathos, and logos with a video enactment of the appeals, followed by a whole-group guided quiz.

Big Idea

Pizza tonight? Teaching students to make it happen.

Pizza Tonight?

15 minutes

As a review of the previous lesson on the argumentative appeals, I begin class today with this adorable application of the appeals that I found on YouTube.  

When I teach argument to students, I often remind them that arguing effectively is a life-skill, even possibly one of the most important things that I will teach them, for to argue effectively can led to getting what they need/want out of their lives.  This little video is a silly yet practical way to demonstrate the appeals at work.

Ethos, Pathos, Logos: A Review

15 minutes

I follow up the video with a "quiz" that we complete as a whole class, filling in the blanks with the names of the appropriate appeals.  

I ask for student volunteers to read each of the three sections out loud, and instruct them to highlight the boxed sections as we read them.  Because the boxed sections possess the practical ways to incorporate the appeals in a piece of writing, I want this quiz to serve as an effective reference for my students to use when they begin to draft their first argument essay.

Vocabulary #9 Review

40 minutes

The remainder of the period is devoted to Vocabulary #9 review and guided activity.  This week's words are gathered from the excerpt from (vindictive, insular, denigrate, disenchanted), the introduction of the argumentative appeals (appeal, ethical), and the final chapters of Bad Boy (forthright, elude, obscure, stultify).

For the majority of the words, I ask my students to develop an original sentence that they can volunteer to share with the whole group as we make our way through the review.  This practice has taken on certain idiosyncrasies in each of my classes, with students competing with each other in sentence creation, students developing story lines and/or themes with their sentences, and students using more than one vocabulary word in their sentences (the "two-for-one", even the "three-for-one" sometimes).  In short, the reviews have become an activity that most of my students look forward to for the fun they have built into them.

I have given a homework assignment with this set of words, asking my students to draft an imaginary note as Walter Dean Myers to Stuyvesant High School, the school the young Myers attended, explaining why he has not been coming to school.  In order to make the assignment achievable rather than contrived, I require that my students use only five vocabulary words accurately in the note. However, should they be successful using all ten words, I will give them one bonus point for each word they use after five.