Author Archives : admin


Teach Argument With Macklemore’s Same Love

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Macklemore’s “Same Love,” embedded below!  Consider how you might utilize this analysis as a model for your students, grab the corresponding lesson plans here, or sign up to receive free and awesome pop culture lessons in your email all year long!

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Teaching With Memes: What You Need To Know

There has been a lot of buzz about teaching with memes, but before you jump in, it’s important that you understand what memes are, and how they can be used as powerful tools for teaching argument, rhetorical analysis, and more. In world of behavioral research, the term “meme” is typically used to describe any thing that is […]


10 Unexpected Texts To Analyze: #NCTEchat’s Top Picks!

Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of hosting #NCTEchat, which was wonderful for a multitude of reasons. Not only did I have the opportunity to engage with hundreds of brilliant ELA educators across the country – I got to ask the questions! @NCTE was kind of enough to archive the chat for us here, should […]

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Rubric Revolution

Rubrics Rule (or, Rules for Rubrics)

We can all agree that rubrics rock – but why? Teachers rave about the ease and speed with which they can score assignments when using a rubric, as well as the “armor” that rubrics provide when they find themselves explaining grades to students (or justifying grades to testy parents). Students, on the other hand, report […]


Three Good Reasons To Teach With Hamilton

Chances are, I’m preaching to the choir. I would have been far less likely to hop into an article about bringing Hamilton in to my English classes before I took the time to listen to and enjoy the musical. But, should you be free spirited enough to have explored this article without a preexisting passion […]

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Teaching English With Stranger Things 2

Our Stranger Things Lesson Bundle is available exclusively to members of the TeachArgument Community.  Click here to join now! If you haven’t watched Stranger Things yet, do yourself a favor and plug yourself into the nearest Netflix pipeline to burn through ‘season one’ before reading any further. If you have watched Stranger Things, you’ll be very happy to know […]


How To Start The School Year (In Four Steps)

It’s funny how those back-to-school-butterflies afflict rookie and veteran teachers alike. They quietly creep up in August, send us into tizzies as we prepare for that first day back in action, and then quickly melt away as that first bell rings. As you consider how to start the school year this September, be sure to […]

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Five Must-Reads For Teachers!

Whether you’re well versed in the world of current professional literature, you’re new to the classroom, or you’re simply trying to “shake the rust off,” we’ve compiled the following list of must-reads for educators who intend to knock it out of the park this school year. Without further ado, here is your handpicked list of […]


PBL in ELA: What’s YOUR Problem?

PBL has been making rounds in educational research and constructivist classrooms for years, but the practices that ensure its successful implementation on a larger scale seem to continuously slip through our fingers. Here, we will seek to bring clarity to four of the most pressing issues that often arise when trying to bring PBL to […]

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Three Core Principles For Teaching With Politics

Ask anyone who teachers argument – teachers of AP Language, of Political Science, of US History and Contemporary World Issues – and they’ll tell you that election years are absolutely awesome for teaching. Why? Because they are brimming with content that’s engaging, that’s immediately relevant to students’ lives (i.e. the kind of authenticity we continuously […]


Fifty Awesome Argumentative Essay Topics

If you’re reading this, you’ve already bitten the apple. You’re actively searching for argumentative essay topics, so we’re not going to waste any time trying to convince you as to why your students should be writing argumentative essays for your class. Instead, we’re simply going to stoke the fire that’s already burning. Below, you’ll find […]

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Ultimate Summer Reading Program

The Ultimate Summer Reading Program 1

What does the ultimate summer reading program have in common with the American dream? Well, if you’ve ever taught American lit, you already know this story most likely ends in tragedy. Picture this: A summer reading program that promises opportunity for any student who is willing to put in the hard work. A summer reading […]


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Three Things You Didn’t Know About Gamification

In recent history, gamification has overhauled the way most major corporations do business. You may have noticed that you literally cannot buy yourself a soda without being opted into some kind of gamified rewards system. As of late, educators have been joining the gamification party en masse – which can be a very a good […]


Three Strategies You’ll Love For Common Core NonFiction

Since its inception, the Common Core has urged educators to incorporate informational and non-fiction texts into curricula across the board. With next-generation assessments coming down the pike, English teachers across the country have collectively white-knuckled their grips on the literary cannon in fear that a deranged Common Core nonfiction bandit might sneak into their bookrooms […]

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Five Ways To Supercharge PARCC Scores

In light of the forthcoming PARCC test, thousands of districts are scrambling to prepare their students for an assessment that they are not yet prepared to take. What follows is a list of five strategies that promise to heighten students’ readiness by honing in on PARCC-specific skills, increasing their familiarity with PARCC-like learning tasks, bolstering […]


How To Teach Argument Writing

If you don’t teach argument writing, you’re not teaching to the Common Core. Plain and simple. A battery of new standards demand that we teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis to students – and the old genres alone aren’t cutting it. Common Core aside, every teacher should teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis simply because […]

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Teach Argument Through Modern Politics

Politics — ranging from speeches to debates, from presidential campaigns to deliberately placed television advertisements — provide an incredibly rich and authentic resource through which to teach argument and rhetorical analysis. Check out our analysis of the first three minutes of Donald Trump’s campaign announcement below. The focus of this video is logical fallacy — and can […]


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Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Budweiser’s 2016 Super Bowl Commercial

As is the case with many commercials that air during the big game, Budweiser’s “Don’t Drive Drunk” ad (featuring Helen Mirren) poured plenty of resources into ensuring that this sixty-second clip would effectively build their brand.  A careful analysis begs the question — is the argument’s purpose to diminish drunk driving, or to sell more beer? We’ve conducted […]


Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Coke’s 2016 Super Bowl Commercial

As is the case with many commercials that air during the big game, Coke’s “Coca-Cola With Feeling” ad poured plenty of resources into ensuring that this sixty-second clip would effectively build their brand.  The argument is, of course, that we should drink more Coke! We’ve conducted a rhetorical analysis for you, embedded below (simply scroll down to […]

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Teach Argument With Adele’s Hello

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Adele’s hit song “Hello” — video analysis embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis, snag the corresponding lesson plans, or sign up to receive the upcoming pop culture lessons that we’ll be sending […]


Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Old Dominion’s Break Up With Him 4

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Old Dominion’s hit song “Break Up With Him” — video analysis embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis, snag the corresponding lesson plans, or sign up to receive the upcoming pop culture lessons that we’ll be sending out […]

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Teach Rhetorical Analysis With R. City’s Locked Away

Check out our rhetorical analysis of R. City’s hit song “Locked Away” — YouTube video embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis, snag the corresponding lesson plans, or sign up to receive the upcoming pop culture lessons that we’ll be sending out (for FREE) […]


Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Taylor Swift’s Wildest Dreams 4

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Taylor Swift’s hit song “Wildest Dreams” — video embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach rhetorical analysis and argument writing, and as you seek to make these advanced English concepts more authentic, engagement, and meaningful. **You can purchase lesson […]

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Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Rhianna’s Four Five Seconds

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Rhianna’s hit song “Four Five Seconds” — video embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis, snag the corresponding lesson plans, or sign up to receive the upcoming pop culture lessons that we’ll be sending out (for FREE) all […]


Teach Rhetorical Analysis With Taylor Swift’s Style 5

Check out our rhetorical analysis of Taylor Swift’s hit song “Style” — YouTube video embedded below! We encourage you to use this film as a model for your students as you teach argument writing and rhetorical analysis, snag the corresponding lesson plans, or sign up to receive the upcoming pop culture lessons that we’ll be sending out (for FREE) all […]

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Teaching Rhetoric With Super Bowl Commercials! 1

We’re thrilled to be sharing a series of rhetorical analyses we’ve done of commercials that aired during “the big game.”  These are, by nature, rhetorical masterpieces… Certainly worth taking advantage of in any ELA environment…! You can find the corresponding lessons and plans here!   Analysis #1: P&G’s “Like A Girl” Commercial   Analysis #2: Budweiser’s […]

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