In this module, students will read, write, and speak about the topic of voting rights and responsibilities. In the first two units, students will read informational texts that focus on the women’s suffrage movement and the leadership of New Yorker Susan B. Anthony. Specifically, they will read firsthand and secondhand accounts of her arrest and trial for voting in a time when women were outlawed from doing so. Students then read The Hope Chest by Karen Schwabach, a historical fiction novel set in the weeks leading up to the passage of the 19th Amendment. They will continue to examine the idea of leaders of change and explore the theme “making a difference” by collecting evidence on how selected characters make a difference for others. After completing the novel, students will analyze this theme in selected passages of the novel and write an essay using evidence from the text to support their analysis.
In the final unit, students will connect the ideas of “leaders of change” and “making a difference” to their own lives by reading about the importance of voting. They will prepare for their performance task, a Public Service Announcement about the importance of voting. To prepare, they will read various informational texts on contemporary voting to build background knowledge and collect evidence for their scripts. They will then write a draft of their script and practice speaking before recording and presenting their Public Service Announcement to peers, their parents, or local high school seniors. This performance task centers on ELA Standards RI.4.9, W.4.1, W.4.4, SL.4.3, SL.4.4, SL.4.5, SL.4.6, L.4.1c and f, and L.4.3.