The Hochman Method Advances Thinking Through Writing

Using The Hochman Method—a set of strategies to assess students’ comprehension and deepen understanding content in any class—Cathedral 8th grade social studies students have been working on a persuasive essay on a topic of their choice, focused on identifying problems with a particular issue, reflecting on ideal outcomes, and pinpointing key players in the process.

The Hochman Method includes an explicit set of sequenced strategies for teaching expository writing that are presented to improve the structure, coherence, and clarity of students’ writing, beginning at the sentence-level. The focus then moves to outlines, paragraphs, and compositions. Students also learn strategies for note taking, summarization, and revision. 

Topics under examination by 8th graders include mental health and discrimination in professional sports, animal cruelty, equal pay, access to clean water, diversity in the beauty industry, and climate change–among others. Students initiated the process by brainstorming potential topics, then wrote thesis statements for three potential issues. They then selected their preferred topic and completed an outline using the strictures of The Hochman Method. They have been identifying trusted sources to back their assertions, and have been writing in class over the past week. They will be finalizing their papers this week. You can see photos of these “Hochman-eers” in the album in the right hand column.
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