Note that this resource was reviewed during the Spring 2014 review period. The resource may or may not have been updated since the review. Check with the content creator to see if there is a more recent version available.
unit from a full course
CC BY NC SA
Format and Features
Resource is Printable
Note: Correlations are embedded in the resource.
Professional development is available. Learn more about it here
Instructional supports are embedded in resource - assessments, learning sequences, model worksheets, and close reading checklists. Teacher and Principa Common Core professional development resources available.
Background from OER Project Review Team
EngageNY is developed and maintained by the New York State Education Department. In order to assist schools and districts with the implementation of the Common Core, they have provided curricular modules and units in P-12 ELA and math that can be adopted or adapted for local purposes. This resource is one unit in module 1 of a full-year grade 9 ELA curriculum, developed by Public Consulting Group. Modules include daily lesson plans, guiding questions, recommended texts, scaffolding strategies, examples of proficient student work, and other classroom resources.
Wow! This is an ideal start-of-the-year unit for teaching students how to analyze and annotate texts, close reading strategies and text-dependent questions. The "turn-and-talks" and "shout outs" allow for whole classroom participation, and yet the "quick writes" and "informal writes" help the teacher assess individual student mastery. The juxtaposition of the two texts and the fact that one is literary and the other informational makes this unit that much more exciting. For a new teacher, this would make for a great beginning unit for LA 9; for a veteran teacher, it would be a B-12 shot to revitalize instruction.
The culminating essay (lesson 11) didn't utilize process writing and asking for a topic sentence, three or four paragraphs and a concluding sentence infers formulaic, five paragraph essays.
Provide extensions for advanced readers and students who might be bored by the pace of working on sections of the two novels for 11 lessons. Allow the advanced students to read both novels while looking for more complex literary elements--syntax? diction? tone?
Start the essay in lesson 10 and spend four more lessons on writing, peer revising, adult revising, editing, and finally publishing. The time frame is far too short for quality writing.
This unit would work well in a grade 9 general education class, grade 10 general education class, or grade 9 honors class.
Mid-unit and end-of-unit writing assessments are weak with respect to the writing process. Students are instructed to follow the process, but it is not explicitly included in the unit
Absence of rubrics. Rubrics are referred to (NY Regents text analysis rubric) but not included
Scaffolding / support for students on plans of accommodation and/or ELL students. Unit does a good job with gradual release of responsibility with respect to the general learner, but lacks specific supports for students who require it. While the lesson sequence includes good suggestions on how to support students who might struggle, this needs to be more explicit
provide greater opportunity for peer review / critique
include rubric in the unit
Inclusion of graphic organizers (for both reading and writing), sentence frames, model TDQ responses would all support struggling students
The unit is tightly aligned to the CCSS as students are required to make connections between two texts, one nonfiction and one fiction, that were written roughly eighty years apart. The unit requires students to close read, annotate texts, and work to understand unfamiliar vocabulary and in doing so students will work on RL and RI standards 1-4. Speaking and Listening and Writing skills are integrated in the unit as well, although the focus is on reading. While there is not a rubric provided in the unit itself there are example rubrics on the Engage NY website that teachers could use with students as they complete the final writing assignment.
The materials are clear enough that teachers of all experience levels should be able to follow the instructions. The unit would work great for a general education 9th or 10th grade class. The unit gives ideas on how long each lesson will take, but teachers may find some lessons take longer than suggested.
Writing instruction - there are great supports for reading instruction, but there could be more support for teachers with regard to writing instruction.
Support for ELL or low readers - there are not a lot of ideas to provide scaffolding to ELL or low readers.
Add some explicit ideas for writing instruction using Writing Standard 2 as a guide.
Give ideas on ways to differentiate instruction for struggling readers.
This resource is a complete unit of study with excellent information for any teacher, from the novice to the experienced classroom teacher.
Very clearly delineates between standards addressed in each section of the unit and standards assessed
There are speaking and listening standards cited in the document as well
Use of both major text types and aligns to standards for informational and literary text
Explicit vocabulary instruction including tiering of vocabulary for students and the instructor
Students are expected to use an Accountable Independent Reading framework to assist them with homework readings
Excellent evidence based questions included throughout the unit
Regular direct instruction and modeling of expectations to assist all students to be successful
Teaches specific annotation techniques to assist students with understanding reading, which could also be used to address specific individual student needs
Includes suggested responses to questions
Links to rubrics for examination of student writing
No specifics for ELL or below level students, though there is regular partner and group work that could be used to pair students in ways that supports those needing extra support