Community and Responsibility: What are you going to contribute to society?
Communication: Students reflect on and apply what they have learned throughout the year.
  • This marking period is designed as a culmination of the previous 3 marking periods in which the students will work to apply what they have learned to new situations and seek to solve problems and create products
  • It is important to act as a mentor and guide for the students both through their final products and also as they make plans for after graduation
  • One goal of this marking period is to allow students choice throughout the creation, managing, and assessment of their 2 final products within the structure of the lesson plans
  • Modeling is key (of course!). The teacher needs to work through the 2 final projects with her own text set and demonstrate to the students the thinking process that leads to the final products.
Key Concepts (New concepts to focus and build on in lessons and assignments; also continue reinforcing concepts from 1MP and 2MP)
  1. Fair use
  2. Evaluation
  3. Synthesis
  4. Syntax
  5. Voice
Lesson Plans
1. Planning for the Final Project
  • a. Students watch and analyze a student made video project from a previous year and break down the steps of what they will need to do to accomplish their own final project. This works together with the Scheduling and Time Management LP, but students should already know their final project topics before they begin this lesson. NOTE: The teacher will introduce both final products prior to this lesson and use the lesson as a vehicle to guide them into making decisions about what they each want to do for the two products. The teacher will then follow up with individual conferences with each student.
  • b. Key concepts: evaluation, analysis, argument, voice, synthesis, fair use
2. Teacher / student conferencing
  • a. Because students have a fair amount of freedom and choice to develop their final two products for the year, they need time to plan and meet with the teacher to get suggestions and guidance to follow through with their ideas (are they doable in the amount of time giving? will they adequately show off what the students know and can do? etc.).
  • b. Key concepts: evaluation, synthesis, voice
  • c. Note: See Teacher and Student Conferencing Guide (attached)
3. Scheduling and Time Management– 4MP syllabus (contains the dates that the class meets and what is due when, etc.), students are given a basic copy of the nine weeks calendar (one month per sheet of paper) for them to manage their time with reading, writing, and assignments.
  • a. The teacher needs to schedule intermediate and final due dates for the whole class and let the individual students make their plan around these due dates.
  • b. NOTE: You also should use this lesson to work with the students to create the grading rubrics for the final products. By this point, they should have enough understanding and a plan to be able to do this.
4. Be the Critic: How do we evaluate the works of others?
  • a. Students will view a documentary and read professional reviews to analyze how we can go about constructively critiquing the works of others and also to gain insight about stylistic choices to make for their own films.
  • b. Key concepts: Evaluation, analysis
  • c. Suggested texts: the website curates short films in many different genres and styles, using the ‘documentary’ tag will lead you to a list of short documentary films with commentary by the curators and contributors of the site. The teacher should view and decide on films that will engage the interest of her students. Some suggestions of short films with reviews that can be used for the annotation activity and are available on this website include: “Inventor Portrait: Ralph Baer” (3min.); “Everything is a Remix” (part 1, 7 minutes) – created with found footage; “Kitty and Lala, 80 Impression” (6.5 minutes)
5. Synthesis: A Teacher Model
  • a. The teacher will model for students how to construct a synthesis paper using her own text set as an example. The teacher will focus on clarity, using multiple sources, embedding quotations, balancing evidence and interpretation, and appealing to the audience. This will serve as a starting point for the students to work on their own final synthesis product.
  • b. Key concepts: Synthesis, syntax, voice, audience
  • c. NOTE: A lesson plan will not be provided here because every teacher needs to create her own model to use to demonstrate to the students how to work through the thinking behind creating a synthesis essay. Remember the final synthesis essay can take different forms but should still work as an essay.
6. Reflecting on the Writing Process
  • a. Students have been engaged in the writing process throughout their school careers. This lesson provides them with an opportunity to engage with the process by reflecting on how to make the process work for their individual learning preferences. The goal is ownership and confidence in the process.
  • b. Key Concepts: Evaluation
  • c. Suggested texts: “Writing Process Animation”
7. Expanding the Text Set: What else do I need to know?
  • a. Students will revisit and review the texts that have contributed to their text set throughout the year and start to brainstorm which essential pieces they will include in their synthesis product and what other supporting information they will need, including creating or finding visual texts (pictures, graphs, etc.) to help illustrate and support their ideas. Students will then do research to complete their text sets.
  • b. Key concepts: synthesis
  • c. Suggested texts: The teacher should model sample additional research for her own text set. The texts the students research will vary depending on their topics.
8. Text set to college and career
9. Interviewing: What makes a good interview? How do I conduct one?
  • a. Students will view and critique an interview, then practice writing interview questions and giving an interview. The students will use these questions and skills to conduct and include the results from an interview in one of their final products.
  • b. Key concepts: voice, evaluation, syntax
  • c. Suggested texts: “Katie Couric on How to Conduct a Good Interview”
10. Who’s Who in the Local Community: How can we make an impact?
  • a. Students will explore organizations in their local community that make a positive impact on people’s lives. A guest speaker from the community will join the class on this day. With the guest, the teacher will model how to conduct a good interview and the students will participate by asking additional open-ended questions and reflecting on what makes a good interview. The students will then go into the community and conduct an interview. Their interview should be related to and used in at least one of their final products.
  • b. Key concepts: Evaluation, synthesis
  • c. Suggested texts: For information on local civic organizations, go to your town’s .gov website or choose your town and then ‘Groups and Organizations’ at
11. Fair Use and Copyright
  • a. Students will analyze what fair use and copyright mean and how they apply to the work they do as students. They will be held accountable for applying fair use guidelines to their final products (this is necessary for the works to be published)
  • b. Key concepts: fair use
  • c. Suggested texts: This lesson relies on works from the Media Education Lab at the University of Rhode Island ( There are many resources available for teachers and students on this site, including lesson plans. The resources below are highly recommended for classroom use.
i. Understanding Copyright Article /Section%201%20understanding%20copyright%202009.pdf
ii. Defining and Applying Fair Use article SECTION%203%20defining%20and%20applying%20fair%20use%202009.pdf
iii. Video: Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education
iv. Case study video:
v. Hypothetical Scenarios /SECTION%204%20five%20principles%20of%20the%20code%20of %20best%20practices%202009.pdf
vi. Student Guide for Documenting the Fair Use Reasoning Process
12. Trouble Shooting: Technology to Life
  • a. We have to troubleshoot problems on the computer all the time, but what about in real life? When every day adversities come up in the months following graduation, how will the students handle them? Where can they go for help?
  • b. Key concepts: evaluation, voice
  • c. Suggested texts: Access to the websites of the colleges, military branches, or businesses that the students in the class have plans for after graduation.
13. Public Speaking
  • a. Students will identify the characteristics of strong formal public speakers and practice their own public speaking skills. They will prepare a three – five minute formal speech to give to the class to introduce, summarize, and reflect on their final products.
  • b. Key concepts: voice, syntax, diction
  • c. Suggested texts: Audio and video of famous American speeches (political, film, graduation, etc.) are available online at
14. Student Response Page Prompt (end of the year version)
  • a. Students complete an open-ended question survey to reflect and share more in detail about themselves, their goals, and their experiences.
  • b. Key concepts: evaluation, synthesis
15. Peer review and critique of final products
  • a. Students review and provide critiques of their own and each other’s final products while reflecting on the growth and changes in the students as a whole.
  • b. Key concepts: evaluation, synthesis, voice, fair use
  • c. Suggested text: Class created website
1. A text that works as a public service announcement or mini-documentary that seeks to educate or persuade a defined audience about a meaningful and relevant topic to the students and their community. Note that this can take more than one form (for example, website, video, podcast) and it is up to the individual students to decide with the teacher the most appropriate form for their topic and audience.
2. A synthesis essay that demonstrates the journey the students have been on during the previous year through synthesizing and drawing conclusions about the multiple texts they have read and experiences they have had. Note that this can take more than one form (for example, a video or illustrated essay – a written essay that includes images/charts/graphs to help support and develop the main ideas) and it is up to the individual students to decide with the teacher the most appropriate form for their topic and audience.

Note: the form the two products take are up to the individual students and teacher to decide. Product 1 may be done in small groups, but each student should complete product 2 individually. The goal for the class will be to publish all of the students’ final products on a website or wiki page. This can be made public or kept private just within the class depending on the school rules, but at the very least, it will provide a venue for the students to share what they accomplished with each other.

Example of a possible student approach to these two products:
Text set topic: Leadership
PSA: How to be a leader in your community (includes: interview with a local community leader, information about community organizations that you can get involved with, interview with a student leader)
Synthesis Essay: What makes effective and ineffective leaders? (includes: examples from the fiction and nonfiction reading the student has done throughout the year woven together with analysis and interpretation by the student who then makes connections to his/her own life and goals)