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Chapter 9: Claim Capers

Katie Rogers Marzano Research ePub

9

Claim Capers

For middle school and high school students

Claim Capers is a game designed to teach middle and high school students to use their powers of observation and close-reading skills to find and present evidence. The idea to use picture mysteries to teach students to support claims with evidence comes from a book by George Hillocks Jr. (2011) called Teaching Argument Writing, Grades 6–12. In the book, Hillocks outlines a detailed process for drawing conclusions, identifying evidence, and explaining how the evidence supports the claim. In this game, small groups of students inspect the scene of a crime and use their observations to decide what happened, why, and who is responsible. When the students come together to discuss their conclusions, the group with the most evidence to support its case wins!

Setup

The most important item that teachers must prepare for Claim Capers is a picture mystery, such as the one in figure 9.1 (page 174). The picture mystery depicted in figure 9.1 comes from Lawrence Treat’s (1982) Crime and Puzzlement 2: More Solve-Them-Yourself Picture Mysteries. Treat is a renowned mystery writer who has worked with various illustrators to create entire volumes of picture mysteries, including the Crime and Puzzlement (1981, 1982) series and the children’s book You’re the Detective! (2010), which contains nonviolent crime puzzles for the younger set. His picture mysteries always include (1) an image of the scene, as shown in figure 9.1, (2) a short description of how the investigators came upon the scene, as well as any suspects that may be involved and other information not included in the picture, and (3) a set of questions that illuminate various pieces of evidence and guide the reader through solving the mystery. Unlike many other quick-solve crime puzzles, which often hinge on one crucial piece of evidence (such as a minute detail in a suspect’s story that reveals he or she is lying), Treat’s picture mysteries usually include several different clues that the reader adds together to solve the case. Because the object of this game is to produce as much supporting evidence as possible, Treat’s evidence-heavy mysteries work splendidly.

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Chapter 8: Rhetoric Memory

Katie Rogers Marzano Research ePub

8

Rhetoric Memory

For middle school and high school students

In Rhetoric Memory, which is based on the classic game Memory, students identify two expressions of the same concept (which have different connotations) and match them together. The student with the most matched pairs at the end of the game wins. Here’s the catch: in order to keep a match, a student must explain the connotations of both expressions.

Setup

To play, middle school students must understand the terms connotation and denotation and be able to identify various connotations of words with similar definitions. Additionally, high school students must understand how to evaluate persuasive rhetoric.

Create a set of cards for each group of students. Cards must be printed as double-sided copies and then cut apart. When created properly, one side of the card will show a term with a connotative meaning and the other side will show the definition for the term. To illustrate, figure 8.1 (page 162) shows the front and back sides of a matching pair.

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Appendix B: Claims

Katie Rogers Marzano Research ePub

Appendix B Claims

Organized by grade level

This appendix can be used for:

Argument Relay

Convince the Crowd

The following tables contain lists of claims to use in the classroom. While the claims are meant to be used with the aforementioned games, they also make excellent topics for class discussion, prompts for essay-writing exercises, or subjects for research reports. Furthermore, the claims in each list pertain to an array of different content areas (including language arts, science, social studies, mathematics, foreign language studies, and the fine arts), which makes teaching argumentation relevant and achievable in a variety of classrooms.

The claims are organized by grade level, with one list each for elementary, middle, and high school students. Each of the three lists contains one hundred claims to use with students in that grade range; there are three hundred unique claims in total. Claims have been classified into grade levels based on subject matter, requisite background knowledge, and level of external research required, as well as by vocabulary and complexity of the claim itself. As with the facts and opinions listed in appendix A (page 209), teachers should feel free to use the claims that are most appropriate for their specific groups of students, even if we have placed them at a different level. For example, if a teacher gives context, leads a class discussion, and rewords it, a high school claim can become a middle school claim, a middle school claim can become an elementary claim, and so on. Elementary and middle school claims can also be made more complex to be used at the high school level. For example, the simple elementary school claim “All kids should learn karate” might be adapted for high school students as “Women in college should be required to take self-defense courses,” which encompasses a wider range of issues at a much higher level of complexity.

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Appendix A: Facts and Opinions

Katie Rogers Marzano Research ePub

Appendix A Facts and Opinions

Organized by level of difficulty

This appendix can be used for:

I Think, I Like, I Believe

Fishing for Facts

Rapid Fire

The following tables contain lists of facts and opinions to use in elementary classrooms. Middle school teachers may also decide to consult these lists for review with sixth- or seventh-grade students. The statements presented in these lists are generally designed to require little to no background knowledge to distinguish them as facts or opinions.

The facts and opinions are organized by difficulty into three tables: easy, medium, and challenging. Each table contains a set of seventy facts and opinions to use with students. Groupings are based on the complexity of the vocabulary used and the amount of content knowledge a student needs to recognize facts. Use preassessments and your judgment as a teacher to determine which list to use with your students. To illustrate, consider the following fact from the challenging list: “The eight planets in the solar system are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.” A first grader may or may not be familiar with the eight planets, but a fifth grader almost certainly will. Similarly, an easy fact, such as “One plus one equals two,” while appropriate for early elementary students, will not challenge students in upper elementary.

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Chapter 7: Text Evidence Bingo

Katie Rogers Marzano Research ePub

7

Text Evidence Bingo

For upper elementary, middle school, and high school students

This game, based on the classic game of chance, gives students practice with generating claims and identifying grounds to support them, particularly those that involve citing textual evidence. The game is flexible enough to allow for ample variation in subject matter and game play. It can be modified to suit multiple content areas (language arts, science, and social studies) and works best with students who are very familiar with using textual evidence.

Setup

Prepare a set of claims about a particular text for students to fill in on their blank bingo boards. You can either (1) use one of the sets of claims provided at the end of this chapter (pages 120–158), (2) create a set of claims yourself, or (3) lead a content-related brainstorming session to create a list of claims with your class.

Make sure to come up with more claims to choose from than there are spaces on the board (that is, at least twenty-six items). The types of claims you use will vary by content area. For example, if you teach high school language arts, you could play the game to practice using textual evidence to support claims about a class novel. During a previous lesson, the class brainstorms a long list of themes present in a novel and claims that can be made about those themes. For example, if you are practicing using evidence to make claims for themes in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, one list item may read, “Dwelling in the past can prevent you from moving forward into the future.” As previously mentioned, this list of claims should contain at least twenty-six items by the end of the brainstorming session, because you want students’ boards to be as varied as possible to avoid ties.

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