For the Instructor
For the Instructor
Provide your students with a short article they can analyze and submit online for evaluation. Commit some class time to discussing the interesting and challenging words they found and how their initial observations and questions about these words can lead to an interrogative and focused thesis.
It would also be useful to assign your students the observational paragraph from the end of the chapter to take up in small groups during class time. This will allow for peer feedback and provide you with additional writing on which to give direct feedback.
- Bring in an image and ask the students to analyze it using the skills detailed above. The image could be a piece of art or an advertisement. Have the students make multiple and miniscule observations and encourage them to develop the most outlandish, controversial claim they can make while making use of specifics from the image. All inferences and claims must be connected to some actual aspect of the image.
- Organize students into groups of 3-5 and have them analyze an unseen text you will provide them in class. Give the students time to compile information using the techniques detailed in this chapter. But rather than simply observing what is there, ask them develop an opening sentence indicative of a challenging, scholarly reading. Don’t let students rely on phrases like “This text is about…” Encourage them to begin their examination into the motivations of the author. Require your students to consider why the author is writing, exactly what is at stake, and exactly how the author best conveys this message. Ask the students to produce a sentence following this format:
In “[Name of Article],” [Name of Author] uses citable textual evidence in order to feasible but controversial claim about what this text is really doing .
Have the students share and critique their answers.
- Which claim was the most controversial?
- Which claim promises the most interesting reading?