Home > Our Design Lab > Formative Tasks > Create Arguments Using Facts, Details, Data, Evidence and Anecdotes_Debate

Create Arguments Using Facts, Details, Data, Evidence and Anecdotes_Debate


How do you choose the most important ideas to include, and include them in the most compelling format to build a cohesive argument?
Find a way to organize your thoughts about the issue and the supporting evidence you have collected. Ensure that you present your ideas in a compelling fashion, using principles of rhetoric in order to build a strong argument for your position. 

Time To Complete 

1-2 Days

Common Core Standards 

  • CCRA.SL.4
  • CCRA.W.1
  • CCRA.W.4

I Can Statements 

  • I can
    • support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant, accurate data and evidence that demonstrate an understanding of the topic or text, using credible sources. (6-8.WHST.1b)
    • quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation. (6-8.WHST.8)
    • draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (6-8.WHST.9)
  • I will know that my supporting details and evidence are of high quality when they:
    • demonstrate my understanding of my topic
    • support my claim and analysis
    • are accurate and drawn from credible sources
    • are properly cited to demonstrate the credibility and authority of the source
    • include paraphrases, direct quotations, and indirect quotations

Suggestions for Assessing Student Readiness to Move Forward:

  • Confer with students, asking probing questions about the details and evidence they are using to support their main idea to gauge how well they meet the quality criteria.
  • Confer with students asking them to explain their evaluative process for distinguishing relevant from irrelevant information and asking them to show specific examples drawn from their research.
  • Ask students to self-evaluate their work after completing one of the activities below.
  • Ask students to show the evidence they have gathered in organized notes/note cards, graphic organizer, draft body paragraph(s), or suitable pre-writing activity to gauge how well it meets the quality criteria.
Possible Activities 
  1. Conduct a series of mini-lessons on the parts of an argument, including: the claim, the evidence, the warrant, the backing of the warrant, and refuting counterclaims. 

  2. Model for students a process of choosing and presenting evidence, what counts as evidence, and where to find it  in order to build a strong argument (e.g., personal experience, interviews, research, quotes, anecdotes, data, facts, observations, or experiments). 

  3. Using a model argument, have students identify the various aspects of the argument including the claim, the evidence, the warrant, the backing of the warrant, and the rebuttal. Consider posing questions such as: Was this argument successful?  Why? How did the author appeal to the audience?  Have students use the speech analysis form provided below to analyze another argument for rhetoric. 

  4. Using a sample argument (great historical speeches are a superb resource for this activity), have the class identify rhetorical devices such as anecdotes, rhetorical questions, hyperbole, allusion, metaphor, simile, personification, connotative language, and parallel structure. Have students keep a list and identify the impact of each on the listener or reader and how it strengthens the argument. 

  5. In the style of a writer’s workshop, have students create their arguments using the components of an effective argument and various aspects of rhetoric

Downloadable Resources 
Login to See More