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Standard 3: Critical Reading and Writing

Students will apply critical thinking skills to reading and writing.

WRITINGStudents will write for varied purposes and audiences in all modes, using fully developed ideas, strong organization, well-chosen words, fluent sentences, and appropriate voice.

9.3.W.4 ARGUMENT Students will introduce claims, recognize and distinguish from alternate or opposing claims, and organize reasons and evidence, using credible sources.

Student Actions

Teacher Actions

  • Students will make a claim.
  • Students will address opposing claims.
  • Students will sequence evidence logically.
  • Students will use credible sources using appropriate citation style determined by the teacher.


  • Teachers model how to write claims.
  • Teachers provide opportunities for students to write claims.
  • Teachers provide opportunities for students to receive feedback on the accuracy of their claims.
  • Teachers model how to address opposing claims.
  • Teachers provide opportunities for students to explain how their evidence supports their claim.
  • Teachers provide opportunities for students to receive feedback on the effectiveness of their use of evidence to support their claims.
  • Teachers model how to sequence reasoning and evidence effectively. 
  • Teachers provide opportunities for students to receive feedback on the effectiveness of their evidence to support their claims.
  • Teachers model how to evaluate the credibility of sources.  

Supporting Resources

Teacher Insights

  • Argumentation is a genre of writing that requires the student to investigate a topic; collect, generate, and evaluate evidence; and establish and defend a position on the topic in a concise manner (OSDE Glossary).

    • Argumentation explains what someone believes and wants an audience to recognize that that belief--or perspective--is a valid perspective; a writer making an argument will have a confident tone.

    • Persuasion actively campaigns for one perspective (the writer’s) to be “right” as he/she wants the audience to agree with him/her; a writer who is trying to persuade his/her audience will be more aggressive in his/her attempt to “sell” to that audience.

  • Students need to establish an arguable claim that expresses one opinion on a topic; other alternate or opposing claims should be recognized and addressed in a counterclaim, also known as a counterargument.

  • Students should be intentional in how they select and sequence their reasons and evidence to ensure the argument is logical and clear.

    • Though the standard five-paragraph essay may be a good place to start structuring or organizing an essay, in argumentation other structures can be experimented with-- Classical, Toulmin, and Rogerian.  

    • Claims are supported by multiple reasons, and then reasons are proven with thoroughly developed evidence.

    • Example:

      • Claim: Students should wear school uniforms.

      • Reason #1: Students will spend less time thinking about what they are wearing.

      • Evidence to prove Reason #1: Survey is conducted that shows how much time students spend getting dressed for school.

  • In arguments, writers will use different kinds of evidence (first-hand and second-hand evidence) because they make different appeals (ethos, pathos, or logos), and/or they have different effects on the audience and/or the argument.

    • For more information on these: Evidence should be from credible sources (a credible source is one written by authors respected in their fields of study). Responsible, credible authors will cite their sources to verify the accuracy of and support for what they’ve written.

  • Examples of Argumentation:

    • Literary Prompt: Students must argue whether or not a character is heroic.

    • Non-fiction: Take a stance on uniforms in school, and write your school board to argue your position.

Due to recursive nature of the standards, it is essential that teachers are aware of how all objectives within and between strands work together for optimal instruction.

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