Grade levels: 9-12

Lesson Objective: The Learner Will Be Able To
  1. Start with a premise and then conduct research to support or refute it.
  2. Write a persuasive paragraph which sums up research conducted and supports or refutes the premise.
  3. Learn more about ancient glacial ice and glacial research methods.
Materials:
  • Computers with internet access
Lesson Process

1. Building on the KTW worksheet from the last lesson, the students will now begin a research project using the following statement from the website as their basic premise:

Glaciers are storehouses of precipitation that fell long ago and are an important record of past shifts in climate. (From the Ancient Glacial Ice section of the Website)

2. Before beginning, discuss persuasive essays. What is the objective of a persuasive essay? What is the difference between a properly researched persuasive essay and an opinion piece? How does a researcher use citation to support a premise? What are some basic techniques of persuasion? I remember a friend once saying “the strong, soft voice is heard.” Discuss the difference between one-sided ranting and presenting pros and cons, then drawing conclusions.

3. Draw the following outline on the board, to provide a basic essay structure for the students.

1. Introduction
a. state topic and premise.

2. Body Paragraph One
a. topic sentence: Your strongest supporting point.
b. Two or three statements from your research which support this point.

3. Body Paragraph Two
a. topic sentence: The weakest of your three supporting points.
b. Two or three statements from your research which support this point.

4. Body Paragraph Three
a. topic sentence: Your second strongest supporting point.
b. Two or three statements from your research which support this point.

5. Summation and Conclusion.
a.Revisit premise and each of the three points made.
b. Draw a conclusion which either supports or refutes the premise.

4. Now, the students must draw from various sources, through books, magazines, and the internet, to learn more about glacial research and what kind of information is contained in ancient glacial ice, to write a good persuasive essay.