Writing About Power Companies and Dams

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SWBAT state the opinion of power users and power companies about dams.

Big Idea

Dams provide power companies and users with low-cost, renewable hydroelectricity.


15 minutes

I begin this lesson by asking students to review the power company research packet and note-taking outline that they read and completed in the previous lesson. Throughout the unit, the students have become familiar with the process of reading and note-taking and then writing about their research. Nevertheless, the reconnection with material read the day before is an important first step for students. This helps them to remember what they read, focus on key ideas, and idenitfy the persepctive of the stakeholder.

I then ask students to look at the paragraph outline. I display the outline on the document camera and guide students through the process of writing a stakeholder paragraph. I remind them that the opinion of the stakeholder is written in the center box, the surrounding boxes should contain reasons for this opinion, and the paragraph should end with a concluding sentence which summarizes the content.

Independent Writing

30 minutes

I then provide time for students to work independently to write their paragraphs. I spend time answering questions, providing encouragement, and clarifying expectations for students as I circulate around the classroom.

Samples of my students paragraphs can be found here and here. A video of a student sharing his paragraph can be found here.