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Fact Vs Opinion Template - PDF by srb17176


Fact Vs Opinion Template document sample

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									SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary

Lesson Plan Template                                                                                            SUBJECT-Virginia Studies                                                           GRADE-5

How Will You Cause Learning Today?
               Facts and Opinions as they relate to
TOPIC - Identify                                                                                                DATE 10/9/07                                                                       PERIOD -2
slavery in Colonial Virginia
Essential Question(s):

How can knowing the difference between a fact and an opinion influence your life?
How do people use facts and opinions to get others to believe something or act in a certain way?

                                                                                   OBJECTIVES OF THE LESSON
                             A statement or statements of what students will be able to do AS A RESULT of rather than AS PART OF the lesson.
SWBAT: The students will be able to categorize 10 statements as either Fact or Opinion with 80% accuracy or better and
receive at least a score of 3 on the 4 point County Writing Rubric on an Exit Slip containing four or more sentences stating
how their point of view might have been shaped by the facts and opinions presented on the topic of slavery in colonial
Whoa. I’m not sure that that’s a cognitive/comprehension objective. It sounds like it could be an assessment,
but heavens! I was in a first-grade classroom today where the teacher was teaching students about fact vs.
opinion. I was in a 3rd grade classroom yesterday where the teacher was teaching students about fact vs.
opinion. Are you sure that is new learning? Is that really something that 5th graders cannot do? As for what
they put on the Exit Slip, I have trouble seeing that as a new learning outcome: it states, basically, that you will
be teaching students how to complete an exit slip where they tell how their OPINION may have been shaped by
something. What are you really after? What is it that they couldn’t do before the lesson that they’ll be able to do
after the lesson? My instinct is that the objective was not the first thing you wrote. It feels like you came up with
some activities for this lesson and have tried to write an objective to match them. I just don’t think it would
sound or read like this if you’d started with the learning outcome in mind first. I’m also pretty certain that you
are not teaching writing in this lesson; to use it as though it were a new learning outcome and to include it in the
assessment is inappropriate. You should teach what your objective indicates is NEW learning, and your
assessment should be aligned to that objective.
                                                                              ASSESSMENT OF THE OBJECTIVES
                                  Describe how you will collect evidence that individual students have indeed met the lesson objectives.
Each student will be given a worksheet to fill out as they hear/read the 10 summaries/re-statements of their
classmates in the modified Point-of View Study Guide. After hearing/reading 10 summaries presented to them,
the student will put the letter F (for fact) or O (for opinion) next to the appropriate group number. After finishing
the worksheet, each student will fill out an Exit Slip asking to write four sentences of more about how they might
have been influenced by some of the facts and opinions presented in class if they had been alive in colonial
Virginia. (I’m just not seeing how this is a worthy comprehension outcome or a meaningful assessment. Are
you teaching students to distinguish fact from opinion? Is that the real outcome? I still don’t see that as new,
given what I see in plenty of elementary classrooms.)

  T                T                                                                                                                                                              S            S           S          S

                                            BEFORE READING, VIEWING, or LISTENING

                                                          TEACHER                                                                  STUDENTS

                             • focusing attention, laying groundwork, creating interest, sparking       • strategies to get STUDENTS thinking about what they already know

                               curiosity…think of it as setting the stage/setting them up for success   • cause STUDENTS to bring to mind similar ways of thinking, an

                             • make sure students “get” the purpose (not just agenda) of today;           analogous idea, or previously-learned content or concepts
                               what it will result in or lead to; the “why” of what they’ll be doing    • STUDENTS are caused to think about that element of today’s learning
                                                                                                          that is most close to or familiar to them
( 1 minute ) The students will enter the classroom with The Electric Slide playing on a CD. The instructor will model the moves and
encourage the students to clap and move along with the song.

( 3 min )After all are seated, the instructor will say to the class, “Not all popular songs can be played in school. Rap music and hip hop
cause kids to do bad things. Kids who listen to rap music and hip hop get bad grades in school and drop out. They end up living at home
with their parents for the rest of their lives. I know it is true because I read it on the internet. Ladies and Gentleman, is that a fact or an
opinion? How about this from Reuters News Service, Nov 8, 2007? - Researchers at the University of Pittsburg School of Medicine, who

Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  12/17/07                                       
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary
studied popular songs, found that one in three mention alcohol or drug use. Nearly 80% of rap songs mentioned substance abuse” Fact or
opinion? Why should you care?

(Here’s the thing: if you can ask students these questions before you’ve even taught them anything about fact or
opinion, then it is clearly NOT new learning. You asked them about today’s concepts as though that is prior
knowledge. If they can answer those questions when they walk in the door, then it cannot be your objective for

Today’s lesson is going to allow you to explore the difference between a fact and an opinion. Why is that important? Why should you
care? Because people will try to get you to believe that their opinions are facts in an effort to get you to agree with them. Do you really
want your parents to think that what I said at the beginning of this lesson was a fact and for them to believe it? Each one of us needs to
learn how to recognize a fact that we can prove to be true or untrue. We need to recognize when something is someone’s opinion and not a
fact. Knowing the answers to these questions can make a big difference in a person’s life and in the lives of others. Let me give you a
good example:

(At this point, I’m seeing an awful lot of you, and very little of your students. In fact, however far we are into the
lesson, I can be somewhat certain we heard from two or three students a few minutes ago, and now I’m seeing 30
children sit passively, mindlessly, thoughtlessly, numbly…minute…after minute…after minute…after minute. You
had no strategy to activate the prior knowledge within each student’s head and no way to make that thinking
visible [that’s what strategies do for us!]. And now we’re moving into a partially hidden DURING where you are
going to tell them a bit about colonial Virginia.)

“Back in the day” in colonial Virginia many people agreed with the idea of slavery. They went along with the idea that it was OK to own
another person. They went along with the idea that it was OK to whip or sell or kill that person or rip families apart and sell children.
Would you have gone along with that idea? What were people told by others to shape their opinions and make it seem OK?

The purpose of the lesson today will to learn the difference between facts and opinions. We will read facts and opinions about slavery in
colonial Virginia. All of the facts will be true. Some of the opinions will be for slavery and some will be against slavery. You and a
partner will read something written back in the days of slavery and you will summarize what you have read and present it to the class as a
character assigned to you. One of you will be a writer and one of you will get to be an actor. After the lesson, you will be given an
opportunity to show that you know the difference between a fact and an opinion as they relate to slavery in colonial Virginia. You will be
given a chance to tell me in writing how some of the facts and opinions that you heard in class today might have caused you to agree or
disagree with slavery if you had been alive in colonial Virginia.

                          DURING READING, VIEWING, or LISTENING
           •   strategy(ies) for active engagement with the new content that’s coming
           •   what are students doing WHILE reading, viewing, or listening?

( 5 min ) The instructor will ask the students to take out their personal dictionaries and copy the following definition from the overhead: (
Special ed and ELL students should already have the vocabulary pre-taught to them from their resource teacher) (Why waste time with
having students simply copying? Can’t you just give a copy to everybody? Do they really need a copy?)

     Fact- Something that can be proven to be true. Example: Jamestown was founded in 1607.
     Opinion- A person’s belief or judgment: Example: The founding of Jamestown was the best thing to ever happen the Powhatan
     people in Virginia.
     Point of View- A person’s way of looking at something or attitude towards something based on the facts that they hear and their
     opinions and experience. Example: The Powhatan people and the English people have a very different point of view about the English
     arrival in Virginia.
     Slavery- When one person owns another. That person is their possession.
     Agriculture- The business of producing crops and livestock. Example: Farming

(OK, this is where the hair on the back of my neck is standing up a bit, and there’s this little vein in the side of my
head that begins to throb. What have you learned thus far in the course to indicate that the best way for students
to comprehend is to copy information into their notebooks? Can they do this passively, without thinking about it?
Absolutely. So it fails the basic test of what you’re supposed to show me you thought about for the DURING
portion of a comprehension-based lesson.)

The instructor will again read the first quote about rap/hip hop music. Thumbs up if you think that is a fact, thumbs up if you think it is an
opinion. Repeat for University study. The instructor will caution the class that such facts must be looked into closely to see who sponsored
Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                                        12/17/07                         
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary
the study, how big was the study, etc . . . . Facts must be verifiable, unbiased etc... (This part is clearly an AFTER: You are
asking students to apply their “new” knowledge about facts and opinions to some examples. That is metacognitive
in nature. By the way, what good does the whole thumbs-up/thumbs-down thing do? Is that how students check
themselves, or how you check them? What is supposed to happen in the Metacognition phase anyway? Ah, and
here’s the other thing that gets me: You are expecting students to master a couple of concepts: “facts” and
“opinions.” But you’re not using a vocabulary strategy, and you’re not getting them to think so much about what
makes a fact a fact, and what makes an opinion an opinion. What truly distinguishes one from the other? What
are the essential characteristics or traits of facts, and what are those that are specific and essential to opinions?
That’s what you should be getting students to think about and understand.)

( 10 min ) The instructor will model the assignment with a Teacher Think Aloud and a short excerpt from “Slavery in the Light of Social
Justice” by Chancelor Harper. The students will follow along (No, they won’t. This is an invitation for students to be
passive, and it shows you are teaching your willing and able learners, and neglecting your less able or reluctant
learners…there must be a strategy to shape and structure students’ thinking and attention and so that that
thinking will be visible to you, to me, to anyone who comes into your room!) on the overhead as the instructor reads aloud
and stops to verbalize the thinking that takes place as she decides if this is a fact or opinion and encounters difficult or confusing material.
(Hmmm…now it seems that you are trying to teach a process: HOW one goes about distinguishing facts from
opinions…does that mean your objective is really that students should be able to describe the process for
determining when something is a fact or when it is an opinion? This is procedural thinking, but I do not see a
sequential organization strategy being employed here. I just see the teacher going Blah-Blah-Blah-Blah and a
bunch of students sitting mindlessly, thoughtlessly, distractedly…) She will then use the passage to fill out the graphic
organizer “Fact or Opinion” (copied at the end of this lesson plan )in order to make a decision on if the passage was a fact or opinion. She
will then summarize the passage for them in the assumed character of a slave owner. (Passive for students!)

THIS NEXT PORTION is going to be an AFTER, most likely, because it is where you are getting students
to try out their skills with distinguishing facts from opinions. This is not a knowledge lesson; it is a skill
one. The skill is about facts and opinions. They are not reading any explanations about how one
distinguishes or identifies facts and opinions; they are taking what they’ve been told about these and
putting them to use. That is the nature of the AFTER.

(25 min) The students will break into ten pre-assigned groups of two for Student Read-Alouds (why read-alouds?).
Each group will be given a short passage of authentic text dealing with slavery in colonial Virginia. Unknown words are to be highlighted
and definitions given on a separate piece of paper to be added to personal dictionaries. (Why? What does that have to do with
your objective for today? Will this facilitate or distract students on the march to the intended outcome of the
lesson?) 3 of the passages will be from slavery proponents using their point of view to justify slavery. Three of the passages are written
by anti-slavery opponents using their point of view to condemn slavery. Four selections will be fact based articles. (If you divide this
up, you are not giving students a chance to apply their skill at distinguishing facts from opinions. The four
selections that are fact-based will not give students opinions to pick out, and those that are pro and con will likely
have all opinion and very little identifiable fact. This misses the whole point of your lesson!)

Accompanying the text will be a scenario for each group to follow with explicit directions in order to complete the modified Point-of-View
Study Guide.

Example: Pretend that you are a newspaper reporter and have been given the assignment of writing a factual account of what it is like for a newly
captured slave traveling across the ocean. Your boss has made it very clear that your job to report only the facts and to keep your personal point of view out
of your writing. All of your facts must come from a primary source. Pretend that the quotes in these paragraphs were said directly to you. All of the facts
from this Ship’s Captain have been proven true. Write a factual paragraph telling what it is like for a slave on a slave ship and be prepared to present it to
the class as the reporter.

The recorder of the group will write a summary or restate what was said from the Point of View assigned to them.
The teacher will check each summary prior to it being presented to the class (Why? What is the point of the AFTER, then, or the
ASSESSMENT?). She will also make copies for the overhead to be shown to the class while they are being read.

( 20 min )The reporter for each group will read their finished product in their assigned character. (Oh my gosh. So for 20 more
minutes, most students will again be sitting there passive, passive, passive.)

Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                                                           12/17/07                              
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary

                               AFTER READING, VIEWING, or LISTENING
              • how will students apply new knowledge in a new way?
                                  • how will students check to see if their understanding is correct?
                                  • how will students be prompted to reflect on what they learned?
                                  • how will students be prompted to reflect on how they learned it?
                                    [Also, Please Note: The Assessment Occurs in the After Phase]

After each group presents their reading, each student will mark their individual paper - F for Fact or O for opinion for each group’s
presentation. The correct answers will be given (Are you kidding me?? What the heck is the point of all this if you’re
just going to tell them what the correct answer was? Why bother to do an AFTER if it’s not metacognitive? Why
doesn’t the nature of the task tell kids if they got it or not? What will be the point of assessing if you will just have
them repeat what you’ve made them copy into their notebooks in the during and then you “CORRECTED” them in
the AFTER? Why would there be anything to correct if you’d actually taught them to distinguish fact from
opinion? What does it tell you about this lesson if such correction would even be possible in your mind?) prior to
the students leaving so that they may check for understanding.

( 5 min ) An exit slip will be given to each student and filled out prior to leaving.

Prior to leaving, the class will listen and clap to the Negro Spiritual – Swing Low – Sweet Chariot Well that certainly has nothing to
do with this lesson!

After taking up the papers, the instructor will read the correct answers to the ten readings so that
students may check for understanding (THAT doesn’t reflect anything you’ve been taught in this class).
The students will fill out an Exit Slip. It will say:
In four sentences of more explain how you might have been persuaded to -agree OR disagree that
slavery in colonial Virginia was justified as being needed for the agricultural community.

                         • Why teach the lesson THIS WAY?
                         • Why, given this lesson’s objectives, are THESE the best strategies to choose and use? Be specific!
                         • Explain why this sequence of activities best leads to cultivating the behaviors or performing the skills or
                           displaying the knowledge called for by the objectives.

This lesson is designed to meet the needs of students on several levels. At its most basic, students learn to discern a fact
from an opinion while increasing knowledge about slavery in colonial Virginia.
At the metacognitive level, this lesson requires the students to engage in critical thinking. They are asked to evaluate
evidence and analyze it as either a logical, provable fact or an opinion passing as fact.
Each strategy was chosen with a specific intent. The timing and the progression of the lesson were designed specially with
the functioning of long and short term memory taken into consideration. Because short term memory fills up, time was allotted
for breaks between activities where new information was introduced. In this way, the new information could be filed into long
term memory space be freed up for new information to come in
The introduction with the music activates long term memory (about fact versus opinion? Do you understand what we
mean by prior knowledge?). Songs are very powerful teaching tools and an enjoyable way to provide the base of prior
knowledge that is so critical to learning. Music can create “hooks” and activate "prior knowledge." (I’m sorry…that is
made up, untrue, and unsupported, and it has absolutely nothing to do with what you’ve been taught in this class.
Can you cite some research for me that says if you are teaching students to distinguish fact from opinion, the best
way to activate prior knowledge is to play The Electric Slide? Can you give me credible published studies that
show The Electric Slide is a “hook” for understanding the concept of a fact or the concept of an opinion, and to be
able to undertake the process of distinguishing one from the other? Your rationale should tie strategies to the
objectives and you should use the Learning Theory OF THIS COURSE to support it. To suggest that this lesson
benefits in any tangible, measurable way from the use of a song defies logic and flies in the face of what you’ve
been asked to make sense of in this course. I am utterly at a loss to conceive of why I’m reading about the
unproven power of music as an aid to understanding fact versus opinion, when you’ve been through eight or nine
modules in a Reading in the Content Areas class that give you a whole lot more to hang your rationale on. Do
Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                                       12/17/07                    
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary
you see why this leaves me speechless?) (Well, not really speechless, because I’m certainly finding plenty to
say, aren’t I?) The use of music in the classroom is consistent with theories of multi-sensory learning. Research suggests
that the more senses involved in a lesson, the deeper and broader the degree of learning. This lesson begins and ends with
song, dancing and clapping to activate as many learning modalities as possible.

After prior knowledge has been activated and the students become engaged (much of this lesson is designed to suppress
engagement, rather than spark it) with the lesson, the importance or relevance to the lesson is explicitly stated. It is then
tied into the idea of the Social Studies lesson on slavery in Colonial Virginia.

The purpose of the exercise is set for the students in the Before activity. The students are explicitly told what the purpose is
and what is to be expected of them. This allows them to move quickly and with understanding into the During stage. After
teaching (I take it you would argue, in spite of everything that we’ve shared with you in this course, that the way to
“teach” vocabulary is to make students copy it into their notebooks?) the key vocabulary component of the lesson, the
Teacher Think Aloud models the main body of the lesson for the students. This strategy was the best to use because the
authentic text being presented to the students was more difficult than most of what they had previously experienced. This
modeling can be a powerful tool in teaching the students how the mind can work when comprehending text and questioning
what is being read. In this way, it facilitates metacognition. (Unfortunately, it is not clear that students were given the
purpose to observe the steps involved in distinguishing fact from opinion, nor are they asked later to verbalize those
steps or produce evidence that they can restate those steps.)

The Point-of-View Study Guide was chosen as a strategy that also fosters metacognition by requiring the students to read a
selection as a character and then summarize or restate this in their own words. This strategy also creates engagement and
reading with prosody. The graphic organizer assists the student in organizing what they have read and reaching a logical
conclusion. Many students need visual cues to help them organize their thoughts. (Again, unfortunately, this is not in line
with the stated objective of the lesson, regarding how one distinguishes fact from opinion.)

The Read-Aloud strategy also actively engages the students. Pairs were chosen so that a stronger reader could assist (Does
“stronger” equate with “helpful” or even “skilled at helping?”) a student at a less advanced reading stage. Because the
sound level of the entire class reading muffled individual efforts, this paired reading allows struggling readers some level of
privacy. (You did not state that “prosody” or “fluency” was an objective of this lesson. Does your objective justify the
choice of this strategy?) This strategy also fosters communication (not unless you use a strategic support that compels
or invites this) between the partners about the text that does not usually come with “round robin” reading or silent reading.
Having the reporter read in character also encourages prosody and fluency from the practicing done prior to the presentation
(but you’re not teaching them how one reads in character, and the emphasis on prosody and fluency will only apply
to the reporters, not to all students).

The students have ownership in what the groups have created and the summaries presented to them are more relevant than
any that could have chosen by the teacher to check for learning. (Have you ever seen a group work situation where one or
more students do not actively participate in creating the group product? If so, why would you make this outrageous

After reading, viewing, and listening the students get a chance to check their answers to see whether or not they got objective
of the lesson: knowing the difference between a fact and an opinion. [But that’s the point of an assessment, you see?]
The instructor also ascertains if the students have achieved this objective. [I think this shows you might be missing the
point of the assessment. It’s the assessment that should be used for the teacher to check to see if students can
produce evidence related to the objectives. The AFTER phase is where the students are finding out if they’re
getting it or not.] The Exit Slip allows the students to take the new information that they have learned and apply it to a
situation that real people were confronted with. Their new skills allowed them to consider what they read and heard about
slavery from a new point of view. This allows them to take their new ideas and apply them in a meaningful way. These are
skills that will follow them all of their lives as they apply these new skills into their every day lives. [The Exit Slip might have
been a good assessment vehicle for you, but I think you’re looking past the collection of evidence and sending
them out with, well, stuff that they wrote because you told it to them or you corrected what they’d NOT gotten
during the lesson. Scary, isn’t it? You seem to be saying you’re pretty sure you’ve designed a lesson that the
students will not get, so in the end, you’ll be “correcting” them. Wow!]

The song at the end of the lesson is designed to once again tap into of the long term memory and evoke emotion into the end
of the lesson – further ensuring that the lesson be more memorable. [You’ve heard my roar on this one.]

Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                              12/17/07                       
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary

                                              REFLECTION [IF LESSON WAS TAUGHT]
                        Was the lesson successful? How do you know? What would you do differently next time?

The lesson was successful in that one hundred percent of the students were able to discriminate between a fact and an opinion at the end of
the lesson. (I’m willing to wager that 80 percent of them or more could do this even BEFORE the lesson.) The lesson
clearly focused on what the change in the students was to be and what it would look like. It took into account the way that people learn and
met those needs All students were actively engaged and participated in the lesson. The lesson focused on what the students were doing.

The Exit Slip was more problematic for four of the students. Most of those four stated that slavery was bad and they would never like have
liked it. The four sentence minimum was not met and they scored a 2 on the writing rubric. In retrospect, the lesson was too ambitious in its
scope and covered too much material in the 70 min block. It is probably better suited to middle school student. The vocabulary in the
authentic text was much more problematic than anticipated. (Sounds like you are assessing their writing, which was not the
objective of the lesson, or should not have been…because you did not teach writing in this lesson.)
To do it again, I would create two lessons out of it or have the grouping in a group of four instead of two to cut down on the time needed for the
presentations. (The presentations are pointless: you have an inexpert presenter and a passive group of students. It
doesn’t make sense to do it that way, regardless.) I would have a choice of Exit Slips – The 3-2-1 Comprehension Check and the
Opinion on Slavery. I would make certain that I had more time at the end of the lesson to sum up what we had learned. The ending seemed
rushed. I believe I would have tied the rap music part back in.
I would also find some text that was more alligned to the reading levels of some of the students, rather than relying on the pair reading and
teacher modeling alone. (This is the best thing you’ve said thus far! At least it sounds more like something you would
have learned in this class!)

Raymond C. Jones                                                                                                                                             12/17/07                          
SAMPLE LESSON PLAN with Instructor Commentary

                              Fact or Opinion
                Facts                                         Opinions
                                                             Advertisements, editorials,
     Encyclopedia, atlas, text books,                          people’s viewpoints.
  scientific evidence. I can prove this to
               be true or false.                        This is what a person thinks. I cannot
                                                              prove it to be true or false.

                                Your Point of View
 Use your prior knowledge, what you believe to be the strongest facts, the most reasonable
            opinions, and what is most likely to be true. Explain your reasoning.

Raymond C. Jones                                                                              12/17/07             

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