The heart and soul of the Teengagement® program are the Units of Study.
This article gives an overview of the Units of Study (I) and then provides a description of how to approach teaching the Units to your class (II).
Units of Study refer to individual units based on a high-interest topic. You can find all available units by logging into Teengagement.com and clicking on Units of Study in the toolbar. Use the drop-down menu to navigate by category and Lexile level.
All units are produced at three Lexile levels, so you can choose the Lexile range that best fits your students’ needs. Each unit is based on an essential question and contains:
- a High-Interest informational Article with an accompanying Reading Instructional Guide (RIG) and Selected Response Questions based on Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Reading
- a Technical Article with an accompanying RIG, Selected Response Questions, and a writing prompt
- an Interpreting the Data section which encourages to integrate data and analysis to come to a written conclusion about the topic
- a College and Career Article focusing on a career field related to the unit with writing opportunities including an Ethical Dilemma
- a Vocabulary Assessment and Authentic Assessment, to determine student progress based on project-based learning, and an Extended Response Writing Prompt based on the unit Essential Question
Also available is a Critical Thinking Connection (CTC) for the unit, which includes outside resources that you can use to teach the unit.
The resources include informational texts, literature connections, videos and images, standards focus, reading strategies and differentiated extensions.
These are optional ideas designed to help you engage your students and provide rich, relevant text-based reading, writing, and discussion opportunities.
II. Approach to Teaching the Units
Each Unit of Study comes with a Teacher’s Guide and Student Workbook.
High Interest Article
Begin with the Reading Instructional Guide for the High Interest Article. Introduce the unit Essential Question, and take your class through the Before Reading activities, including introducing vocabulary and anticipation questions. Then have your class read the article using the process outlined in the Reading Instructional Guide. After reading, have students address the Text-Based Discussion Questions in the Reading Instructional Guide and complete the Sorting the Evidence. Also have them complete the Multiple Choice Questions corresponding to the article.
You can now introduce the Technical Article using the same technique. The technical article gives students new vocabulary and an opportunity to interact with informational text that includes complex information and specialized knowledge. Introduce the Before Reading section of the Technical Reading Instructional Guide. Have students read the article, the have them discuss the Essential Question based on the text they have read to this point. Students should then complete the Technical Multiple Choice Questions and Technical Writing Prompt.
Interpreting the Data
Students can complete Interpreting the Data next. The purpose of this is to address the standards correlating to integrating and evaluating content presented in diverse formats, typically charts and graphs. Students may need assistance learning how to answer short-response questions based on alternative forms of text, and you will want to introduce them to the grading rubrics found on Teengagement before they begin. Next have students complete the Integrate and Evaluate extended-response writing prompt.
College and Career Article
Direct students to the College and Career Article. After they read it they can answer the extended response questions of the Looking Forward Prompt and Ethical Dilemma.
The formal assessments of each unit include the Vocabulary Assessment, Authentic Assessment, and Essential Dilemma Extended Response. Students can complete these in the order you feel is best. The Authentic Assessment is often a project-based assignment that you might want to include as a portion of class over the span of teaching a unit, rather than in a block of classes. The purpose of the Ethical Dilemma Extended Response is to require students to synthesize knowledge built through unit texts to form an opinion about the essential question.
Critical Thinking Connections (CTC)
Critical Thinking Connections are designed to offer you optional, outside information and ideas to further engage your students. In other words, while the Units of Study stand on their own the CTCs provide additional options and dimensions for engagement. In them you will find links to articles, literature, videos, etc. that you can choose to pull into a day’s lesson to use as a warm-up, opening hook, or comparative text.