Ohio Resource Center
Day 3 Writing Applications

Propaganda Techniques in Literature and Online Political Ads (ORC#: 4426)
After reading or viewing a text, students are introduced to propaganda techniques and then practice identifying examples in the text. After examining these examples, students explore the use of propaganda in popular culture by looking at examples in the media. Students identify examples of propaganda techniques used in clips of online political advertisements and explain how the techniques are used to persuade voters. Finally, students explore the similarities of the propaganda techniques used in literary texts and in the online political ads to explain the commentary the text is making about contemporary society. In this lesson, some specific references are made to Brave New World as examples. A text list, suggesting additional novels, short stories, plays, and movies that will also work for this activity, is also provided. (author/ncl)

Supporting Middle School Writers (ORC#: 4363)
In this article Debbie Collins, an eighth grade language arts teacher at West Union High School in Ohio, suggests that junior high students need variety, modeling, and explicit instruction to succeed in school. Collins applies these techniques to writing and reading. She also shares examples from her own teaching experiences and provides some practical instruction for writing essays and journals with middle school students. Collins also suggests reading strategies for middle school students to prepare them for the demands of high school.(author/mcg)

What If: The Seed of a Story (ORC#: 1199)
How does a seed of an idea become a story? The focus of this resource is on understanding and applying the story elements of plot, setting, and character in original narratives. Students begin by reading a short story, then analyzing the structure and development of the story. After generating a number of "what if" ideas for narratives, students work in small groups to develop their own story lines. This series of lessons is written to span four days, but may be easily integrated into a variety of teaching formats. (author/ncl)

What's the Problem? (ORC#: 2304)
The aim of this lesson is to help students develop their persuasive writing and information gathering skills using various forms of information and communication technology. Using the context of issues common to teenagers, this lesson provides an authentic and personally relevant purpose. Students identify issues of importance to them, research information, and write an essay outlining their ideas. This lesson includes many resources and links to online reference materials. (author/ncl)

Written Reflection: Creating Better Thinkers, Better Writers (ORC#: 5171)
In this article the author explains an extra component she has added to writer's workshop: reflective writing. She defines it as thinking about thinking or looking back with new eyes in order to discover what has been learned throughout the thought process. The reflective writing component should not be a summary of what students have written, but focused thoughts on various aspects of the writing process. The author suggests that reflection must be combined with authentic writing experiences in order to create able writers. Authentic writing incorporates real audiences, choice of topic, and student decisions about which pieces will be published. Three reflective assignments are introduced and described in the article. They are Writer's Log, Draft Letter, and a Portfolio Letter. (author/aec)

Writing the Real Persuasion (ORC#: 5206)
In this article, the author describes an process for engaging students in persuasive writing. For the initial assignment, high school students selected societal issues, about which they had strong beliefs or an interest in investigating, and wrote a persuasive essay. Topics ranged from such issues as drunk driving, saving the rainforest and school board policies. After completing the papers the students identified a specific audience and focus for the topic in order to write an effective, persuasive business letter to voice their concerns. Writing a paper and business letter provided opportunities for students to do research, develop their arguments, and revise their work to make their arguments more concise. The success of this assignment stemmed from engaging students in a way that revealed the power they have through writing. (author/aec)