Ch 1: Argumentative Writing Introduction: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.7.1A

About This Chapter

In the videos included in this chapter of lessons, our experienced English instructors present discussions of argumentative and persuasive essays, argument components, and writing an awesome essay. Take a look at our ideas for activities to practice the concepts taught here.

Standard: Introduce claim(s), acknowledge alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically. (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.7.1.A)

About This Chapter

These videos help students pick apart all of the parts of an effective argument and put them together for a good argument inside a well-built essay when writing their own. These engaging videos provide top-notch instruction set to fun animations acting out real-world examples (and some otherworld ones, too). The topics covered by these lessons include:

  • Formatting an argumentative essay
  • Writing a persuasive essay
  • Parts of an argument, including claims, counterclaims, reasons, and evidence
  • Writing a great argument
  • Structuring an argument within an essay

Pairing these video lessons with your classroom instruction will result in students who have mastered the theory and craft behind strong essays and other argument forms. They will be able to approach the writing and research process more critically, focusing on all angles of the topic in question and understanding how to recognize when their initial position is not as strong as the opposing argument.

How to Use These Lessons in Your Classroom

Whether you're strapped for time or just not sure how to make this area of learning interactive, use these activity ideas to get these lessons moving in the classroom.

Everyone's a playwright

Watch the Parts of an Argument video in class and assign a homework project of writing a brief scene in a play where two characters (the argument and counterargument) have a disagreement. Instruct students to ensure their characters use effective reasoning and evidentiary tools. Have them present (or act out!) their scene to the class and take a poll as to which character won the argument. Tie the exercise to effective essay-writing techniques by having the students translate their scene into an essay with an effective argument.

Directly incorporate the videos and assessments

Take less than 10 minutes (the length of all our videos) a day to present one of these videos. Assign the 5-question quizzes as homework each evening. Complete the chapter quiz in class after completing the videos to gauge comprehension and synthesis of the critical components of good arguments.

Argument collages

Bring old magazines and newspapers into class. Show the How to Write a Persuasive Essay and Use Several Sources video. Afterwards, hand out the magazines and newspapers and instruct students to literally use several sources to build an argument. They will build an argument mad-lib style by cutting out portions of various, unrelated stories and piecing them together into a new argument of their creation. Choose a favorite argument collage by vote after all are presented.

5 Lessons in Chapter 1: Argumentative Writing Introduction: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.7.1A
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Argumentative Essay: Definition, Format & Examples

1. Argumentative Essay: Definition, Format & Examples

Argumentative essays are kind of like superpowers: they allow you to get what you want using the superpower of persuasion. View this lesson and learn how to channel persuasion to write a good essay.

How to Write a Persuasive Essay and Use Several Sources

2. How to Write a Persuasive Essay and Use Several Sources

In a persuasive essay in which you cite multiple sources, it's important to strike the right balance and use your sources to support your points without depending on them too much. In this lesson, we'll cover how to use multiple sources effectively to support your argument while still fully developing your own ideas in a persuasive essay.

Parts of An Argument: Claims, Counterclaims, Reasons, and Evidence

3. Parts of An Argument: Claims, Counterclaims, Reasons, and Evidence

To effectively write an argument, you need to know the four basic parts. In this lesson, you will learn the definitions of the four basic parts and why you need them in an argument.

How to Write a Great Argument

4. How to Write a Great Argument

Many times our writing must not just be informative but it must also be persuasive. One of the best ways to be very persuasive is to use a great argument. Learn six steps you can follow to write a great argument.

How to Structure an Argument in Your Essay

5. How to Structure an Argument in Your Essay

When you write a persuasive essay, it's important to think about how you'll construct your argument, from how you'll arrange your major points to how and where you'll refute opposing views. This video covers some of the basics for structuring an argument.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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