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First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing

By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem



Overview of Unit:In this two-week unit, our students will explore the topic of persuasion. The goal of this unit is to
strengthen students persuasive writing skills by having them form opinions and read informational texts to support
their opinions with evidence from their research. By the end of this unit, the students will use their opinions to
create a classroom book. They will be able to state their opinion on what animal they believe will make the best
classroom pet, and give reasons why.

Tools students will add to their tool belts include:
1. Identify what persuasion is
2. Identify ways we persuade
3. Differentiate between an opinion and a fact
4. Supporting opinions with facts

Essential Questions to Guide Instruction and Focus on Tools in Students Tool Beltsin This Unit:
How are facts and opinions different from one another?How do we use them differently in our lives?
How can we support our opinion with strong facts?
How can we persuade someone that our opinion is correct? What kind of facts can we use to support that?
How can we organize our thoughts and opinions to create strong persuasive writing?

Mentor Texts to Help Students Add Tools to Their Tool Belts in This Unit:
Anchor Texts:
Dear Mrs. LaRue by Mark Teague- We will use this text to help discuss the definition of persuasion and what it
means to persuade someone. The story is of a dog, banished to obedience school, and begins writing
persuasive letters to his owner.

Red Is Best by Kathy Stinson- In this book, little Kelly plays her opinion against her mother's practical advice.
Kelly loves red and her belongings that are red. She wants to wear the red mittens because they make better
snowballs, and the red boots because they take bigger steps and in the red cup, she tells her mother, juice
tastes better. We think that this book will help my kids begin to identify with their opinion about the simplest
things like their favorite color.


First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

Should We Have Pets? A Persuasive Text by Sylvia Lollis- In this informational text, a second grade class
presents arguments for and against pet ownership. This mentor text will help our students learn how to
support their opinions with facts.

Times For Kids magazine articles

Approximate Timeline for This Slice of the Unit: 2Weeks

Dates CCSS Objectives: I CAN
What are the enduring
understandings that students will
construct?
What are the tools they will add
to or use from their tool belts as
readers/writers and critical
thinkers? What are the essential
questions that will guide our
work?

Evidence of Student Learning
How will I know students have
constructed understanding?What
will students write, say, create,
produce that will evidence their
learning and allow me to provide
feedback? How will students
reflect on their own learning?
Instruction& Materials
How will I use the I/We/You model
of instruction to scaffold students in
constructing rich understanding?
How will I break the unit down into
weeks and days? What materials
and resources will I use to scaffold
this?
Week
1

W.1.1 Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing
about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure.
Mon. W.1.1:I can write an opinion. Students willcontribute to the
word web with what they noticed
about persuasive writing in the
mentor text. Using one word off
the word web students will begin
to write an opinion about their
favorite foods in their writing
journals.
I: Introduce the topic of persuasion
with the students. Discuss how one
way to do this is form an opinion.
An opinion is our idea or how we
feel about something and when we
want someone to agree with us.
Provide examples of ways to start
an opinion by picture walking
through the mentor text Dear Mrs.
LaRue. Stop on pages where Ike is
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

using persuasive words.
WE: Begin creating a class word
web, providing examples of
persuasive words such as I
believe, In my opinion, I love.
Add some examples found in the
mentor text and have students
brainstorm different ideas to add to
the web.
YOU: Students will then choose
one word off the word web and use
it to write an opinion about their
favorite food. For example, I love
pizza!
Tues. W.1.1:I can write an opinion. Students will continue to
contribute to the word web with
what they noticed about
persuasive writing in the
text.Also, students will verbally
share an opinion, draw a picture
about it, then write the opinion
in their journals.
WE:Review the word web from
previous day to revisit what an
opinion is.
WE:Revisit the mentor text Dear
Mrs. LaRue. Have the students
listen for words that we might have
missed the day before that we
could add to our word web.Once
the story is complete, have the
students turn and talk with a
partner about other persuasive
words we can add to the web.
WE: Have students form a circle
and tell them to think of their
favorite toy in their head. Tell them
not to say it out loud, but to just
think about itusing words from the
word web go around the circle
having each student state their
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

favorite toy. Teacher will participate
with the students.
YOU:Students will then draw a
picture of their favorite toy in their
writing journals. Underneath the
picture students willwrite the
opinion they stated when we went
around the circle.
Wed. W.1.1: I can write an opinion. Students willidentify the authors
opinion in an article from
TimeFor Kids.Students will then
write whether they agree or
disagree with the authors
opinion and why.
I: Today we are going to discuss
the ways writers share their
opinions in articles in order to get
their message across to readers.
WE: As a class we will read an
article from the Time For Kids
magazine. There will be a copy of
the article on the Elmo. After we
read the article, we will highlight
and discuss the places where we
can find the authors opinion.
YOU: Students will write in their
journals whether they agree or
disagree with the authors
opinionand why.
Thurs. W.1.1 I can write an opinion.

Students will brainstorm ideas
for what animal they believe will
make the best classroom pet.
They will choose one animal and
write an opinion statement.
I: Tell students we are going to
write a class book on what animal
they think will make the best
classroom pet and why. Introduce
the book Should We Have Pets.
Explain to students that other
students wrote this book because
their opinions matter.
WE: Read examples from the
mentor text to show students how
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

others write opinions.
YOU: In their writing journal
students will begin to brainstorm
ideas for what animal would make
the best classroom pet. Have them
choose one animal from their list
and write an opinion statement.
Fri. W.1.1 I can write an opinion
aboutsomething.

Students will participate in class
anchor chart and give thumbs up
for fact and thumbs down for an
opinion. Students will
participate in fact or opinion
game. Students will write one
fact and one opinion on a topic
of their choice in their writing
journals.
I: Begin explaining the difference
between fact and opinion. On
anchor chart write one fact and one
opinion such as, I like pizza
versus A tree is a plant. Discuss
the reasons why one is fact and one
is opinion.
We: Continue giving examples of
fact versus opinion and have
students give thumps up for a fact
and thumbs down for an opinion.
I: Put out a fact sign in one corner
of the room and an opinion sign in
the other.
WE: Teacher will shout out either a
fact or opinion statement and
students must decide if its a fact or
opinion and move to the correct
corner.
YOU: Students will write one fact
and one opinion on a topic of their
choice in their writing journals.
Week
2
W.1.1.Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing
about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure.
R.I. 1.8 Identify the reasons an author gives to support points
in a text.
W.1.1.Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or
name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure.


Mon.
W.1.1: I can write an opinion
about something.


Students will write one fact and
one opinion and demonstrate
they understand the difference
by using the popsicle stick.
WE: Review difference between
fact and opinion. Give each student
a popsicle stick and have them
write opinion on one side and fact
on the other.
YOU: Students will write one fact
and one opinion on a separate piece
of paper.
WE: Teacher will read aloud some
of the students statements and
using the popsicle stick the
students will show whether they
think its fact or opinion.



Tues.
W.1.1: I can use reasons to back
up my opinion when I write.
Students will write an opinion
about their favorite color and
give one reason why.
I: Explain to students that in order
to make our opinions more powerful
we need to have reasons.
WE: Read aloud the story Red Is
Best. Have students listen for
reasons Kelly thinks red is the best
color.
WE: Create an anchor chart listing
the reasons how the character in
the story backed up her opinion.
YOU: In their journals students will
write an opinion of their favorite
color and give one reason why.
Wed. W.1.1: I can use reasons to
back up my opinion when I
write.
Students will write their opinion
and give two reasons why they
feel this way.
I: On the board, teacher will write
topic of whether or not we should
have longer recess.
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem

WE: As a class, we will begin to
brainstorm pros and cons of having
a longer recess. Teacher will make
a T-chart with 'pros' on one side
and 'cons' on the other. As a class
we will come up with ideas to add
to the chart.
YOU: In journals students state
their opinion on the topic and give
two reasons why they feel this way.
WE: Students will share their
opinions with a partner. As a group
we will then take a class vote.
Thurs. W.1.1 I can use reasons to back
up my opinion when I write.
Students will add to previous
opinion in their writing journals,
and will write reasons why they
feel this way.
WE: Refer to previous anchor
charts and mentor textShould We
Have Pets.
I: Explain to students that we will
be creating a classroom book on
favorite classroom pets.
WE: Together as a class the
teacher will model what he/she is
looking for. On the board the
teacher will write the word "Pig".
Underneath the word, ask students
to think of an opinion statement
that we could write. Pick on a
couple of students to share their
thoughts with the class, and write
them on the board. Teacher will
then model to the students one
reason to back up the opinion
statement. Call on three or more
students to share their ideas with
First Grade, Unit: Prewriting With Persuasive Writing
By: Alicia Armstrong, Kathryn Grundner, Helen Oziem


the class.
I: Explain to students that they
have already written an opinion
statement on what animal they
think will make the best classroom
pet in their journals. Tell them they
can use that opinion statement, or
write another one, but they now
must add reasons to their opinions.
YOU: Students will refer back to
previous opinion on classroom pets
and begin to add reasons why in
their writing journals.
Fri. W.1.1: I can use reasons to back
up my opinion when I write.
Students will begin writing rough
draft on what animal they
believe will make the best
classroom pet and why.
WE: Have the students continue to
brainstorm and add reasons to their
opinions.
WE: Once students feel like they
have a solid opinion statement, and
enough reasons to back it up.Have
students form groups to discuss
and share their ideas and
illustrations.
YOU:After they have had some
time to collaborate with their peers,
students will begin to write their
rough draft.