The Hand Approach

 R E S O U R C E   L I B R A R Y

'Hand' Resources

Introducing students to LENSES can help them both generate ideas and narrow the scope of the writing. The Hand Approach is the perfect tool for doing this!

Brainstorming Sheet

A student-friendly resource!

Writers, get ready for your first, global warm-up! This handout starts students off with what appears to be a rather simple question; but as they delve into its intricacies via lens approach, your writers will quickly realize that there's much more to this question than the surface level they started at! And the best part is, they'll feel empowered that the answer is right in the palm of their hand ;-)


PowerPoint: SLIDES

A ready-to-go Resource! 

This PowerPoint will walk your students through the process of using lenses to explore then narrow the focus of inquiry. It will model the process for them before sending them off to engage in their own explorations via 'hand'!


PowerPoint: HANDOUT

A student-friendly resource!

Encourage active learning by using this handout as a companion note-taker while viewing the Hand Approach PowerPoint


Teacher's Edition

Instructional reference notes for you, the teacher!

Hey, teachers...need a helping 'hand'? Here's a tricky, little cheat sheet to correspond with the PowerPoint and Student Companion Handout. By no means are the 'answers' rigid here, so feel free to fly free! (but at least you have a jumping-off point, right?!) 


Team Project

'Hands'-on learning...

Here's a great activity to get students acquainted with the concept of lenses.

Using a single research question, group members jjigsaw the lenses, then pursue research on the question from their, selected/assigned lens. The group then reconvenes to discuss findings.

This is meant as a follow-up to the PowerPoint model. Project Rubric included!


Sample Essay: LABELED

This labeled version of the 'truth' essay is a great teacher reference. Also useful for tutorial purposes if a student misses class or if you just want to have a model for students to reference throughout the year!


Sample Essay: UN-LABELED

This is an argumentative sample, ranging between 500-600 words, responds to the 'truth' prompt featured in the Hand Approach Unit.

Great for use as a 'student version' because it allows writers to make their own observations about the writing and label/annotate accordingly!


Original Source

Teaching the General Paper: strategies that work, for teachers, by teachers
Caroline Ho, et al.

The Hand Approach to narrowing essay focus is certainly an edPioneer favorite because it provides a simple, accessible way for students to get acquainted with using lenses as a narrowing tool when writing.

But where did all this hand business come from, you ask? Check out Caroline Ho, et al., the Hand Approach originators!

Here's the chapter that's made the Hand all the rave!



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