Chagrin Falls Intermediate School Fourth Graders Hold Revolutionary Debates


The fourth-grade students at Chagrin Falls Intermediate School (CFIS) held debates based on their study of the American Revolution.

In their English Language Arts (ELA) class, students have been learning about nonfiction research by studying the American Revolution. This unit is part of the new ELA program at CFIS, Lucy Calkins’ “Unit of Study.”

This curriculum was designed by teacher Lucy Calkins and a group of her colleagues at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project to prepare students for any reading or writing task they may face. Through years of research and work in thousands of schools across the country and the world, they developed a curriculum, instructional methods, and professional learning opportunities.

Students wrote their own nonfiction book on a chosen topic, and based on their understanding of the American Revolution, they took a position in the war. They then supported their arguments using evidence that was in favor of either the Patriots or the Loyalists during that period.

After crafting their arguments, the students debated one another using their evidence. Chagrin Falls Schools Art Teacher Kristy Boss had students make props in her class to use during their argument including American flags and Loyalist hats.

ELA teacher at Chagrin Falls Schools Heather Reeder said, “The excitement was high, and the debate preparation spilled over into many dinner conversations at home! They were very convincing and well prepared to argue.”


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