Sample Common Core Resources

Teaching Resources: The Price of Ivory

Common Core Teaching Tips and related printables

August 13, 2013

Common Core Teaching Tips for "The Price of Ivory":

Support close reading by following these steps.

Read for understanding

Read the article together, stopping to discuss important facts and details along the way. Ask: Why are African elephants being hunted? What are people doing to help elephants?

Key Ideas and Details

Challenge students to identify and explain cause-effect relationships in the article. To help them, ask: Why is the demand for ivory on the rise in China? (China’s economy is growing.) Why was the international trade in ivory banned in 1989? (In the 1980s, as many as 1 million elephants in Africa were killed for their tusks.) What is one reason illegal ivory is being sold in China? (There is legal ivory being sold in China, which allows illegal ivory to go undetected.)

Craft and structure

Explain that the authors of nonfiction texts often do not directly state an opinion on a topic. However, it is sometimes possible to figure out an author’s point of view. Ask: In this story, can you find clues that reveal how the writer feels about elephants? (In paragraph 4, the writer uses the expression gentle giants to refer to elephants. In paragraph 6, she says that “unfortunately,” legal ivory has made it possible for illegal ivory to be sold.)

Writing Task

Should all ivory sales be banned? Have students use information from TFK to write a paragraph persuading others of their opinions.

Common Core Standards Addressed

R.1: Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.

R.3: Analyze how and why individuals, events, or ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.

R.8: Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.

W.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.


Graphic Organizer:

In the News

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An Ancient Ancestor

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