Personal Visions of the American Dream

Personal Visions of the American Dream

Reflection on Important Arguments


Think about the arguments that have stood out to you, in either positive or negative ways, during the unit so far.

  • List as many arguments as you can remember—from the beginning of the unit or from the convention—that have made an impression on you.

Open Notebook

When you are finished, share some of these arguments with your classmates.

Paper Requirements Review

Work Time

Now your task is to synthesize the reading, writing, thinking, and discussion you have done and create your own unique vision of what you think the American Dream should be.

You will write a three-to-five-page argument paper explaining and defending your position.

In your paper, be sure do the following.

  • Include an introduction that frames the issue clearly, providing enough background for your reader to know what you are talking about.
  • Articulate a clear vision of the American Dream.
  • Be yourself. Write in your own, individual voice aboutyour opinions.
  • Make it clear why this vision benefits the individuals who dream it and the society as a whole.
  • Use the readings you have done (including your Independent Reading book) and the arguments you have heard as evidence.
  • Address possible counterclaims.
  • Appeal to your audience: modern American readers.

Be sure to ask your teacher any questions you have about this paper.

Argument Rubric Review

Work Time

Review the Grade 11 Argument Writing Rubric with your teacher.

As you listen, consider these questions.

  • How does the rubric connect to the presentations you made and to the documents you have read so far?
  • How can the rubric guide your work as you write the final paper?

Paper Preparation

Work Time

  • Review the Map Your Argument chart and begin completing it with the details of your argument essay.

Save your work when you are done.

You Have a Choice
First, determine how you will approach the work. You can choose to work independently, work with a partner, work with a group, or confer with your teacher.

Quick Write


Write the message of your paper in one clear, simple sentence.

  • The message of my paper is . . .

Open Notebook

Paper Planning


  • Finish any planning or outlining that remains and share your plan or outline with your teacher.

Open Notebook

In the next lesson, you will write your draft of your paper.