I had a good session with one of my writing students yesterday. We’ve been discussing the difference between writing a summary and writing a persuasive essay. He’d recently watched Becket in history class, assigned to complement their study of the middle ages. We worked on a summary of the movie before moving onto “taking a stand,” something he’s asked to do in DBQ’s (data-based questions).
I decided to help explain the difference in the two using The Voice, a quirky television show I’ve become somewhat addicted to. I asked him to summarize the purpose of the show, and then to explain which team is the strongest, using details from the show to back up his opinion.
He hadn’t been watching The Voice, so he found it difficult.
“What shows do you watch?” I asked, thinking we could switch gears.
His face lit up. “The Walking Dead!” he said, starting to summarize the show. “It’s about…..”
Well, you get it. The exercise worked well, and I learned more about zombies than I want to know.