Beacon Lesson Plan Library
Persuasion and Parallel Structure
DescriptionStudents identify and explain the effect of parallel structure in -The Declaration of Independence.- This is the first in a series of lessons on persuasive techniques. See lessons with -Persuasion- in the title.
ObjectivesThe student identifies devices of persuasion and methods of appeal and their effectiveness.
The student drafts and revises writing that: is focused, purposeful, and reflects insight into the writing situation; has an organizational pattern that provides for a logical progression of ideas; has effective use of transitional devices that contribute to a sense of completeness; has support that is substantial, specific, relevant, and concrete; demonstrates a commitment to and involvement with the subject; uses creative writing strategies as appropriate to the purpose of the paper; demonstrates a mature command of language with precision of expression; has varied sentence structure; and has few, if any, convention errors in mechanics, usage, punctuation, and spelling.
The student produces final documents that have been edited for: correct spelling; correct punctuation, including commas, colons, and common use of semicolons; correct capitalization; correct sentence formation; correct instances of possessives, subject/verb agreement, instances of noun/pronoun agreement, and the intentional use of fragments for effect; and correct formatting that appeals to readers, including appropriate use of a variety of graphics, tables, charts, and illustrations in both standard and innovative forms.
Materials-A copy of -The Declaration of Independence- for each student.
PreparationsThe teacher does the following:
1. Makes a copy of -The Declaration of Independence- for each student.
2. Prepares a definition and examples of parallel structure to be written on the board, overhead, computer, etc.
3. Makes a copy of the essay grading rubric for each student.
ProceduresThe teacher does the following:
1. Writes the definition of parallel structure on the board and discusses with the class. Previous study of grammar terminology will enhance this explanation but is not absolutely necessary.
2. Divides the class into groups of four.
3. Divides -The Declaration of Independence- into sections, so that each group has one section to analyze for parallel structure.
4. Instructs the groups to identify the examples of parallel structure in their section and to explain what effect is elicted by each example.
5. Has the groups present their examples to the class, with each member of the group participating.
The entire class discusses the appropriateness of each answer.
6. Assigns each student a one or two paragraph essay explaining the author's use of parallel structure to achieve his purpose.
AssessmentsThe teacher will assess the students by their essays using the following rubric:
A: The essay is well-organized, with excellent use of specific examples and integration of quotes. The student has excellent diction, varied and effective sentence structure, and no mistakes in punctuation and grammar. The student fully understands the author's use of parallel structure to achieve his purpose.
B: The essay is fairly well- organized, with good use of specific examples and integration of quotes. The student has good command of diction, some varied and effective sentence structure, and few mistakes in punctuation and grammar. The student understands the author's use of parallel structure in order to achieve his purpose, but not as well as the best essays.
C: The essay is somewhat organized, with some use of specific examples and quotes. The student has mediocre diction, simple and/or ineffective sentence structure, and/or several mistakes in punctuation and/or grammar. The student has little understanding of the author's use of parallel structure to achieve his purpose.
D/F: The essay is poorly organized, with little use of specific examples and integration of quotes. The student has poor diction, ineffective and/or incorrect sentence structure, and/or several mistakes in grammar and/or punctuation. The student has little or no understanding of the author's use of parallel structure to achieve his purpose.
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