School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 8

Reading/ELA | Informational | Literary | Writing | Language | Listening | Speaking

Lesson Seeds: The lesson seeds are ideas for the indicator/objective that can be used to build a lesson. Lesson seeds are not meant to be all-inclusive, nor are they substitutes for instruction.

Standard 2.0 Comprehension of Informational Text

Indicator 5. Analyze purposeful use of language

Objective c. Analyze the appropriateness of tone


The teacher should share the topic of the text with students prior to reading an informational text. Given that information, ask students to predict the tone of that text. Record their answers. Next, students should read the text, record all words, phrases, and pertinent punctuation that signal tone, and determine the tone of the text. Finally teacher and students should compare their predictions with the correct tone. If the predictions were correct, students should explain why that tone would be appropriate for that topic.


The teacher will select an informational text where the tone is purposefully inappropriate to the subject matter. Then the teacher will instruct students to read an informational text with the purpose of determining its tone. In class discussion the teacher will instruct students to return to the passage to select words, phrases, or pertinent punctuation that create tone. First, students will need to explain how those elements create the tone and then justify why that tone is inappropriate. Next, students and teacher will focus on the reason for the inappropriate tone. For example, if the tone is sarcastic, is the author trying to draw more attention to the subject of the text in an alternate fashion or is the author attempting to say too much attention is already given to that subject?