Preparing to Craft Our Social Commentaries

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SWBAT apply knowledge of language to make effective choices for purpose and style by planning the structure and message of a social commentary.

Big Idea

How does genre influence message? Today students will consider this question as they plan their social commentary drafts/process.


10 minutes

We will read for ten minutes at the beginning of class. I will read with students during this time. 

Social Commentary Assignment Overview

15 minutes

I will hand out the social commentary assignment overview. We will review the big requirements and I will allow students to ask questions. I will make sure to point out key information about how I will grade these social commentaries from the rubric on the back making sure to tell students that I will chiefly be looking to their content/message and how their style enhances this. 

This assessment is one of the required assessments for 10th grade in my district. I'm actually really excited to have students engage with it, though, as I think it is a great way for them to put into practice all the work they've done with rhetorical analysis this year. Now they will have to consider how they as authors/artists will use structure, genre, etc. to convey message. To do this well, they will have to be keenly aware of what they are trying to argue and then work really hard to make sure that their format/genre enhances that message. I think they are more than capable of doing this and am looking forward to what gets created over the next few days. 

Social Commentary Drafting Pointers

15 minutes

I will ask students to take their social commentary stations sheet out and will give students a few minutes to refresh/add to their two-column notes from yesterday. By returning to this discussion of the importance of considering genre/form as a means for promoting a message, I hope that students will be primed to think about their own messages and genres. 

After about five minutes of this, I will review the big definition of social commentary and some key ideas to remember when beginning the process of drafting/planning their pieces. As I go through these slides, I will ask students to share examples/ideas from the model texts we reviewed. I will ask them to comment on how each writer/artist achieved the goals and/or answered the questions that I am asking students to think about. I will also ask them to consider the rubric categories and ask them to think what they will need to think about as they start to draft their message/piece (SL.9-10.1). Unfortunately, copyright restrictions make it hard for me to show you the contemporary/modern examples I am using in class, but here is an explanation of an older version of the kind of cartoons/images I might include in this review. 

I really hope that by taking the time to do this whole class review of social commentary, students will be more mindful about the choices they make in regards to their language, page layout, message, etc. (L.9-10.3). I really want them to consider their choices and make sure that they are matching their message and audience to the appropriate style. 

Proposal Drafts

15 minutes

For the last bit of class, I will ask students to create a proposal for their social commentaries (W.9-10.10). I will give them a form to fill in and will remind them of the limitations of their assignment. As they work, I will invite students to ask me questions, run ideas by me, etc. if need be.