Essential Understandings: Students should understand that:
- Survivors endure many obstacles for the betterment of others.
- People take risks for a variety of reasons and risk taking behavior often can isolate a person.
- An author's choice of words are indicative of his perspective and purpose for writing.
- Authors use many different text structures within a text for specific reasons and purposes.
- Effective arguments have a claim that is substantiated by relevant evidence and logical reasoning.
- What does it take to be a survivor?
- What causes people to take risks? What makes some take risks and others not?
- How do authors develop points of view?
- How does word choice affect tone, meaning and mood?
- How does text structure impact the development of ideas and meaning?
- How are effective arguments with sound reasoning and sufficient evidence developed and delivered?
Using these kinds of learning experiences adds depth to the unit, much more than using only fact-learning, reading, and writing would. These, of course, do make up a large part of the unit, but the extensions and digital components increase knowledge and motivation.
The teachers here at MPMS are the best, when it comes to designing units that teach the content but ask much more of the students that regurgitating facts or completing a multiple choice test. Ask your 6th grader about their survival project and you'll see how engaged they've been throughout the unit.