What Is A Hook?

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SWBAT incorporate a hook and powerful words into a Disaster Public Service Announcement.

Big Idea

To create a successful project, students are given the challenge of incorporating precise language, domain-specific vocabulary, a hook, and powerful words to embellish their work.

Bell Ringer- What Is A Hook?

5 minutes

What is a hook?

Before viewing the video:

To help students understand the importance of a hook and to model what a good hook looks like, I show the YouTube video Sham Wow Commercial. This commercial illustrates a good example of a powerful hook.

I ask students to use their Science Journal (Notebook) to record their thoughts. Using a Science Journal is helpful because it provides a consistent place for students to write notes, thoughts, questions, and draw pictures. I ask "What is a hook? Write and/or draw your answer. Give examples." I want students to write and/or draw in their journal for 2 minutes. This provides enough time for students to process and record their thoughts. I also want students to record the date and a title in their journal and then I show the video.

After viewing the video:

I ask "What made that a powerful hook?" and then I draw students into the conversation by using popsicle sticks. This is a useful and equitable strategy that engages all students in the discussion. 

I am looking for responses such as:

  • He is loud.
  • He has a lot of energy.
  • He uses powerful words such as "wow".
  • He shows you the towel and demonstrates its use.


Some prompts you can use to help students pull out all of the dimensions and get a deeper understaning are:

  • What did it sound like?
  • What did it look like?
  • What did it feel like?

Checklist For Final Project

30 minutes

I review the following information with the class, encouraging students to use each of these components in their project such as:

  • A hook
  • Precise language and domain-specific vocabulary
  • Powerful Words
  • A Concluding statement

I provide a checklist for the project so that students can self-monitor to build independence and be successful in their project. To create a successful project, students are given the challenge of incorporating precise language, domain-specific vocabulary, a hook, and powerful words to develop and strengthen their scientific writing process. Students will analyze and interpret the data (SP#4) collected in their research to determine similarities and differences in findings.

Why use a checklist? Using a checklist is a strategy to ensure academic achievement. A checklist is a formative assessment tool both for the student and teacher. It will help students to monitor their learning and reach their goals. Providing a checklist will encourage success in the learning experience. 

During the lesson, I circulate the classroom to ensure that all student groups (Emergency Management Teams) are on target and understand the goals. Students have been working with the same Emergency Management Team for this unit. I talk with students to gauge their understanding and use of the checklist.

As students create their final assessment, they build research and writing skills with CCSS.ELS.Literacy.W.6.2d use precise language and domain specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic and CCSS.ELA.Literacy.W.6.5 develop and strengthen writing.

Note: Each lesson in this unit, Master Disaster, works towards mastery of the NGSS MS-ESS 3-2 which states students will, "Analyze and interpret data on natural hazards to forecast future catastrophic events and inform the development of technologies to mitigate their effects."