Cluster 3: Research to Build and Present KnowledgeArchived

General Information
Number: LAFS.8.W.3
Title: Research to Build and Present Knowledge
Type: Cluster
Subject: English Language Arts - Archived
Grade: 8
Strand: Writing Standards

Related Standards

This cluster includes the following benchmarks.

Related Access Points

This cluster includes the following access points.

Access Points

LAFS.8.W.3.AP.7a
Follow steps to complete a short research project (e.g., determine topic, locate information on a topic, organize information related to the topic, draft a permanent product).
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8a
Gather information (e.g., highlight, quote or paraphrase from source) relevant to the topic from print and/or digital sources.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8b
Quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others in writing while avoiding plagiarism.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8c
Use a standard format to produce citations.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8d
Gather relevant information (e.g., highlight in text, quote or paraphrase from text or discussion) from print and/or digital sources.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8e
Evaluate print and digital sources to refine ideas or thoughts while writing.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.8f
Use a standard format to write citations.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.9a
Provide evidence from grade-appropriate literary texts to support analysis and reflection.
LAFS.8.W.3.AP.9b
Provide evidence from grade-appropriate informational texts to support analysis, reflection and research.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this topic.

Lesson Plans

Periodic Table - Atoms and Bonding:

In this Model Eliciting Activity (MEA), students will use their knowledge of the organization of the periodic table and the basic properties of atoms to determine which elements should be used to develop compounds with two atoms of different elements. Students must determine the number of protons, neutrons, and electrons in a neutrally charged atom of an element using the periodic table. They must also determine which elements will likely bond together using their location on the periodic table. Students completing this MEA will develop two short essay responses to a client in the scientific industry.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bringing Characters to Life: Characterization in The Illustrated Man:

In this lesson, students will study the prologue of The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury. They'll examine how the author reveals aspects of a character through the use of direct and indirect characterization. They'll also make inferences about a character based on the characterization and text evidence provided. Further, they'll analyze how characterization connects to the specific setting and events within the prologue. At the end of the lesson, students will create a detailed character sketch based on direct and indirect characterization as well as inferences made when reading the text.

Type: Lesson Plan

Electromagnetic Spectrum Poster Project:

In this lesson, students conduct a brief review on frequency and wavelengh.  Students are then assigned a specific region of the Eectromagnetic Spectrum to research in small groups.  Posters representing their assigned region are created following specific guidelines.  Posters will include frequency, wavelength, energy level and appplications of their assigned radiation.  Students will then display their posters during a class gallery walk with guiding questions.  This allows students to compare the research they conducted with that of fellow classmates. 

Type: Lesson Plan

It's a Lovely Home, But...Using Multiple Texts to Aid in Decision Making:

In this lesson, students will learn about a subject as they read and analyze multiple text types before writing a business letter explaining a decision they will be asked to make. This lesson incorporates poetry, authentic non-fiction, photography, and writing.

Type: Lesson Plan

Exploring the Future of NASA:

In this lesson, students will read and analyze two nonfiction articles and watch a short video about work at NASA--information includes the retiring of the space shuttle program and possible goals and missions in the future, including ideas for space shuttle replacements and capturing asteroids. Text-dependent questions and answer keys are provided for both articles. At the end of the lesson, students will make a written claim regarding NASA's future plans for space exploration and research, citing evidence from both articles and the video to support their claim. A rubric for the writing assessment is also included. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Rain in Summer: What a Bummer, Or Is It?:

In this lesson, students will analyze the symbols and imagery present in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem "Rain in Summer" to determine its tone and theme. Formative assessment checks are included in the form of student handouts with text-based questions and charts. Students will also write a mini-essay as a summative assessment in which they will develop a claim about the poem's theme, providing text-based examples as support.

Type: Lesson Plan

One for All? Or Not. Letter XII: Distresses of a Frontier Man:

This lesson is based on Letter XII: Distresses of a Frontier Man by J. Hector St. John de Crevecoeur. This "letter" is one of a collection of essays in an epistolary format from the collection, Letters from an American Farmer (1782). In this lesson, students will read and analyze the two central ideas in the text. Students will fill out a graphic organizer on the central ideas and participate in a class debate.

Type: Lesson Plan

Forever Alive:

In this close reading lesson, students will be asked to use multiple strategies to respond to informational text in way that is aligned to the state standards, requiring that they respond with explicit details drawn from the passage. With this short, free-standing article, teachers can incorporate this mini-lesson into their already set curriculum to reinforce the standards and skills being taught. This lesson would also make an excellent small group resource. Attachments needed for this lesson are all provided and include text-dependent questions, graphic organizers, and an objective summary writing prompt with rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Remembering D-Day:

This is a lesson based on President Obama’s remarks on the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion in Normandy. His speech focuses on the anniversary of D-Day and the effect it had on soldiers and civilians who experienced the attack. This lesson provides an opportunity for vocabulary acquisition and an analysis of the meaning of President Obama’s speech.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading of Echo and Narcissus:

In this lesson, students will conduct three close readings of the highly entertaining myth "Echo and Narcissus" as retold by Thomas Bulfinch. Through these readings, students will answer text-dependent questions about the myth, work to determine the meanings of selected vocabulary and sort them into different categories, analyze character motivation, and determine the settings used in the story. For the end of lesson assessment, students will determine a theme for the myth and write about that theme in an extended response paragraph.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading of a Greek Myth: Apollo and Daphne:

Students will conduct a close reading of the myth "Apollo and Daphne" as told by Thomas Bulfinch. Students will use a variety of strategies to learn new vocabulary from the myth, paraphrase complex sentences, and analyze lines in the story that propel action, reveal details about a character, or provoke a decision. As the summative assessment for the lesson, students will work in groups to create a short dramatization of an assigned section of the myth. Also as part of this lesson, students will view some wonderful artwork inspired by this myth and explore why myths are still relevant in our culture.

Type: Lesson Plan

What is Normal? Exploring Connotations and Denotations:

The goal of this lesson is to give students the opportunity to explore the connotations and denotations of the word "normal" and its various meanings. Through the use of "Us and Them," a personal essay by David Sedaris, students will explore the various beliefs and points of view of "normal" based on the picture painted by Sedaris. Students will need to consider the emotional context of words and how diction reveals an author's tone and message, as well as how the use of irony can impact the tone of a piece. Students will also read and analyze a Time article, "An In-Depth View of America by the Numbers," by Nancy Gibbs. For the summative assessment, students will write an explanatory essay (several prompts are provided) about normality using evidence from the texts studied in the lesson for support.

Type: Lesson Plan

Exactly What are You Alluding to?:

Allusions can be difficult for students and hard to teach because not all students have identical or equally extensive exposure to literature, history, and/or popular culture. To overcome this barrier, this lesson builds a "collective consciousness" in each classroom. Students research an allusion and prepare a visual and oral presentation to each explain their allusions. Students are then assessed on their understanding of the allusions taught in one another's presentations.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Paths We Take: A Poetic Comparison:

Students will study two poems in this lesson: Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken" and Dale Wimbrow's "The Guy in the Glass." Students will identify and explain the use of metaphor in each poem, and they will also examine the imagery and personification used in each one. Students will also determine a theme of each poem and explain the similarities and differences in their related themes.

Type: Lesson Plan

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier - An Intro to Analysis & Argumentation Part II of III:

In this lesson students will independently read, outside of class, chapters 8-14 of Ismael Beah's memoir, A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier. In class, students will learn how to create position statements as they read several informational articles and speeches about a variety of topics. Students will also participate in a Philosophical Chairs discussion and use a SOAPTone strategy to help them with their creation of position statements. 

Type: Lesson Plan

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier- An Intro to Analysis & Argumentation Part III of III:

In this lesson (part 3 of 3 in a unit), students will read chapters 15-21 of Ismael Beah's memoir, A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier while learning how to create an argumentation essay using a Socratic Seminar discussion, a SOAPTone Strategy, Opinion/Proof Two Column Notes, reading articles and graphics.

Type: Lesson Plan

Poetry and Meaning: "Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight" :

In this lesson, students will study the poem "Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight" by Vachel Lindsay. Students will identify the examples of imagery within the poem and determine how the use of imagery contributes to the poem's meaning. Students will also practice making connections between the poem and its background information (President Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War) as well as its historical context (World War I). During the lesson, students will also practice determining the meaning of unfamiliar words in the poem.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorials

Ring the Bell: Paraphrase Like a Champion:

Learn to paraphrase grade-level content in this boxing-themed tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Don't Plagiarize: Cite Your Sources!:

Learn more about that dreaded word--plagiarism--in this interactive tutorial that's all about citing your sources, creating a Works Cited page, and avoiding academic dishonesty!

Type: Original Student Tutorial

It's all about Mood: Creating a Found Poem:

Learn how to create a Found Poem with changing moods in this interactive tutorial. This tutorial is Part Two of a two-part series. In Part One, students read “Zero Hour,” a science fiction short story by author Ray Bradbury and examined how he used various literary devices to create changing moods. In Part Two, students will use words and phrases from “Zero Hour” to create a Found Poem with two of the same moods from Bradbury's story.

Click HERE to launch Part One.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Teaching Idea

Close Reading Exemplar: Dulce et Decorum Est:

The goal of the exemplar from Student Achievement Partner web resources is to give students practice in reading and writing about poetry. The poem makes connections to World War I as students closely analyze the poet's depiction of war. Students explore complex text through a) re-reading, paraphrasing, and discussing ideas, (b) achieving an accurate basic understanding of the stanzas of the poem, (c) achieving an accurate interpretive understanding of the piece, and (d) building a coherent piece of writing that both constructs and communicates solid understanding of the poem.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resource

Recognizing and Avoiding Plagiarism:

This text resource from Cornell University includes brief information on the what, why, how, and when of documenting sources in a research paper. The resource provides information on what plagiarism is, when and how to document sources, the difference between primary and secondary sources, and definitions of the following words: documentation, citation, and reference. The resource also provides a quiz to identify whether the writing sample in each exercise uses sources properly.

Type: Text Resource

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Original Student Tutorials

Ring the Bell: Paraphrase Like a Champion:

Learn to paraphrase grade-level content in this boxing-themed tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Don't Plagiarize: Cite Your Sources!:

Learn more about that dreaded word--plagiarism--in this interactive tutorial that's all about citing your sources, creating a Works Cited page, and avoiding academic dishonesty!

Type: Original Student Tutorial

It's all about Mood: Creating a Found Poem:

Learn how to create a Found Poem with changing moods in this interactive tutorial. This tutorial is Part Two of a two-part series. In Part One, students read “Zero Hour,” a science fiction short story by author Ray Bradbury and examined how he used various literary devices to create changing moods. In Part Two, students will use words and phrases from “Zero Hour” to create a Found Poem with two of the same moods from Bradbury's story.

Click HERE to launch Part One.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this topic.