Grade 10: Making Evidence-Based Claims “Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and “A Just and Lasting Peace” [Nobel Lecture] President Barack Obama


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Reading Informational Text

RI.9-10.1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

RI.9-10.2 Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.

RI.9-10.3 Analyze how the author unfolds an analysis or series of ideas or events, including the order in which the points are made, how they are introduced and developed, and the connections that are drawn between them.

RI.9-10.6 Determine an author’s point of view or purpose in a text and analyze how an author uses rhetoric to advance that point of view or purpose.

RI.9-10.9 Analyze seminal U.S. documents of historical and literary significance (e.g., Washington’s Farewell Address, the Gettysburg Address, Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech, King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”), including how they address related themes and concepts.


W.9-10.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

W.9-10.9(b) Apply grades 9-10 Reading standards to literary nonfiction (e.g., “Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning”).

Speaking and Listening

SL.9-10.1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9-10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.


This Grade 10 unit titled “Making Evidence-Based Claims Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and A Just and Lasting Peace [Nobel Lecture] President Barack Obama” from is part of a developing core proficiencies program that is intended to be completed in three weeks of direct ELA/Literacy instruction.  The unit’s primary instructional focus is on making evidence-based claims as readers and writers. Activities are scaffolded to build the skill from the ground up. Students first learn the importance and elements of making evidence-based claims through close readings of text. Instruction leads to students writing evidence-based claims that are clear and compelling, well-supported by textual evidence, coherent and organized, and that show control of language and grammar.


Connecticut teachers should be aware that due to the rigor required for student success, additional supports for students who are ELL, have disabilities, or read well below the grade level text band may be required. Instruction in language and grammar assessed on the rubric is not directly observable in the unit and may need additional instructional time.  Before this unit is used in a history/social studies course, some modifications will be necessary including: the replacement of the ELA CCSS listed above with the English Language Arts Standards in History/Social Studies that are targeted in this unit, additional history/social studies content to meet grade-specific content standards, and possible assessment and/or rubric revision.


This exemplary unit includes a clear and explicit purpose for daily rigorous instruction which integrates reading, writing, speaking and listening so that students apply and synthesize advancing literacy skills. It focuses on challenging sections of text(s) and engages students in a productive struggle through discussion questions and other supports that build toward independence. The unit contains excellent templates for instruction, assessment guidelines, and aligned CCSS rubrics for interpreting student performance.