Discipline: Social Studies

Grade Level: 6th

Course: American History and Geography

©Literacy Design Collaborative. September 2011

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The Individual and the Community: My Responsibilities in a Time of Crisis
  • Background to Share with Students
    • The oil spill that occurred in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana and Alabama had an effect on both the environment and lives of the people living in that area. You will consider not only the effect of this disaster, but also what the responsibilities of others are when any disaster affects the environment and people's lives.

  • Task / Text
    • Teaching Task

      What is the proper role of the individual in response to a "disaster"? After reading various perspectives on individual responsibility and examining an interactive map of the 2010 Gulf oil disaster, write a letter to a younger child that addresses the question, and support your position with evidence from the texts.

      L2: Be sure to acknowledge competing views.

      Reading Texts

      Student material attached:

      • The Individual and the Community: Seminar Process Assessment and Reflection Questions
  • Content Standards
    • Content Standards:

      This module can relate to multiple social studies standards at the state and district level. Be sure to include geography standards, including specific map-reading skills.

      Additional Standards Source: Teachers may also discover that they are covering Common Core Literacy Standards in History/Social Studies in Grades 6-8; Common Core English Language Arts Standards in Writing in Grades 6-8; Common Core English Language Arts Standards in Speaking & Listening in Grade 6.

  • Reading Standards for Argumentation
    • "Built-In" Reading Standards "When Appropriate" Reading Standards (applicable in black)
      • Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
      • Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
      • Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
      • Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently.
      • Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.
      • Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.
      • Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.
      • Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats and media, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
      • Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.
      • Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.
  • Writing Standards for Argumentation
    • "Built-In" Writing Standards "When Appropriate" Writing Standards (applicable in black)
      • Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
      • Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
      • Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
      • Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
      • Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audience.
      • Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
      • Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
      • Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
      • Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
      • Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
  • Scoring Rubric for Argumentation Template Tasks
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