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Author

The All We Can Save Project

Grades

9th, 10th, 11th, 12th

Subject

English Language Arts

Resource Types

  • Lesson Plans
  • Projects

Regional Focus

Global

Format

PDF

Craft a Climate Op-ed

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Synopsis
  • In this rich and well-crafted writing activity, students will learn about op-ed writing and write about a climate topic that is meaningful to them. 
  • Students will learn about the reasons people write op-eds, how to write an op-ed, what makes this writing form unique, and the power of op-eds to create change. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • This resource is an excellent introduction to writing op-eds.
  • Students will enjoy the lesson because they get to choose a climate topic they care about. 
  • This activity calls for at least two days or sessions, but can easily be scaled up into a more lengthy writing unit. 
  • The lesson plan provides links to the OpEd Project website and to two excellent video lectures, which will help prepare students for the lesson.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should be familiar with persuasive writing techniques. 

Differentiation

  • Science or social studies classes could use this lesson during units on climate change or creating change in communities. 
  • While some of the components of the lesson are designed for students to do outside of class, teachers could use them in the classroom. This would be especially helpful for students who have had little experience with persuasive writing.
  • As an extension, teachers can provide students with a way to share their op-eds with a larger audience, like the school or local newspaper. 
  • Other related resources include this writing activity on writing to members of Congress, this activity on writing persuasively about climate change, and this video on talking effectively about climate change. 
Scientist Notes
The resource provides a guide to writing op-eds for climate conversations. The lesson will develop students' skills for effective communication and thought leadership and give them a new perspective on raising their voices for climate justice. This is recommended for the classroom.
Standards

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • English Language Arts
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • RI.CR.11–12.1 Accurately cite a range of thorough textual evidence and make relevant connections to strongly support a comprehensive analysis of multiple aspects of what an informational text says explicitly and inferentially, as well as interpretations of the text.
      • RI.TS.11–12.4 Evaluate the author’s choices concerning structure and the effectiveness of the structure an author uses in his or her exposition or argument, including whether the structure makes points clear, convincing, and engaging.
      • RI.PP.11–12.5 Analyze an author’s purpose in a text distinguishing what is directly stated in a text or through rhetoric, analyzing how style and content convey information and advance a point of view.
    • Writing (K-12)
      • W.AW.9–10.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient textual and non-textual evidence.
      • W.AW.11-12.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
      • W.IW.11–12.2 Write informative/explanatory texts (including the narration of historical events, scientific procedures/ experiments, or technical processes) to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
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