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Writing a Logical Argument: School Holidays

In this worksheet, students use a step-by-step guide to help them develop logical arguments.

'Writing a Logical Argument: School Holidays' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 3

Curriculum topic:  Writing

Curriculum subtopic:  Purpose and Audience Awareness

Difficulty level:  

down

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

There have been a lot of politicians talking about shortening the six week summer break from school. Imagine that you have been asked to write an article arguing that:

 

"School summer holidays should be longer, not shorter"

 

 

Use the following questions to guide you through how to write a logical argument.

Introduction:

Although some politicians seem to be pushing for shorter summer holidays for children from schools, there are a growing number of people who are arguing for quite the opposite; longer breaks. In this article I will argue for this, too, outlining my reasons why and countering the claims of those who wish to shorten them.

 

It is helpful to write as if you already have the support of others, that you are not alone. Which phrase in the above paragraph suggests this?

_  ________  ___________  __  __________  (Write it in the text box below.)

Putting the argument in context - what does the rest of the world do?

Although some people argue that Britain has excessively long summer holidays, many countries have much longer ones. Students in both the USA and Russia usually have a 3 month break and in Sweden, which some polititicians look to as a good example for educational results, students have a 10 weeks off school.

 

How does using these statistics help to strengthen the argument here? Tick two boxes.

It shows that British students and teachers do not get it easy compared to the rest of the world.

It shows that other countries can have good results and still have long holidays.

It shows that Sweden needs to increase its holidays.

It shows that teachers in the USA and Russia should be paid less.

The benefits of long holidays:

When the time is used correctly, a break from school can be as educationally stimulating, if not more so, than being in a stuffy classroom. Young people can join in any number of experiences which will support their development as people, and result in them becoming better citizens as adults, such as: _____________________.

 

Which of the following activities would help to support this argument? Tick three boxes.

camping

shopping

playing a sport

watching T.V.

visiting a museum

Using a counter argument:

There are those who argue that students and teachers do not need a six week break from school. They say that they are lazy and will waste the time; that it is better to be in school learning something than 'getting bored' at home. I object to this for several reasons: Firstly, students and teachers are not 'lazy'. This argument is partly down to jealousy; most adults do not get as long holidays as teachers do, true. But most adults do not work as many hours as teachers do in term time. Also, students often have homework or coursework to complete over the summer, so most of them are still working, just not at school.

 

Why has the writer used inverted commas: '   ' around the words 'getting bored' and 'lazy'? How does this add to the argument?

It shows that those opinions are not shared or believed to be true by the writer.

It shows that they are lying.

It shows that they are lazy themselves.

Using counter-argument and emotive language:

There is a strong argument made which states that, for some students, their lives outside of school are so bad that it is better for them to be in school. At school, they are listened to, helped by other students and teachers, kept safe and warm and some are provided with a hot meal. Not all students get this at home. This is true and a valid point; however, it is also true that, for some students, bullying at school makes their lives more miserable than they would be at home, so this needs to be considered as part of that argument, too.

 

How does the writer cleverly counter the use of emotive language?

By accepting that it is true.

With another emotive argument from the other side.

By dismissing the argument made.

Using rhetorical questions:

Instead of adults arguing about the pros and cons of longer holidays, why not _______________________________?

 

Which of the following would be the BEST rhetorical question to use there?

interview parents about what they think?

have an election and vote on it?

ask students themselves what they think?

How to develop the argument:

Rather than campaign for shorter holidays for everyone, politicians should be working to make sure that all students have access to decent activities and play facilities throughout the summer, close to where they live. That way, everyone can enjoy the summer and come back to school having had a good break.

 

Good development of an argument will include _____________________.

lots of rhetorical questions

ideas for where to go from here

emotive language

Conclusion:

Although there are always going to be people who, for whatever reason, do not make the most of the summer break, the majority of students do. Therefore, we should have longer holidays, not shorter ones, so that students can learn things outside of the classroom and develop new skills.

 

Which connective is used here to summarise the writer's position? Write it in the text box below.

  • Question 1

Introduction:

Although some politicians seem to be pushing for shorter summer holidays for children from schools, there are a growing number of people who are arguing for quite the opposite; longer breaks. In this article I will argue for this, too, outlining my reasons why and countering the claims of those who wish to shorten them.

 

It is helpful to write as if you already have the support of others, that you are not alone. Which phrase in the above paragraph suggests this?

_  ________  ___________  __  __________  (Write it in the text box below.)

CORRECT ANSWER
a growing number of people
EDDIE SAYS
The phrase 'a growing number of people' gives the writer authority as it insinuates that they are not alone in arguing for longer holidays.
  • Question 2

Putting the argument in context - what does the rest of the world do?

Although some people argue that Britain has excessively long summer holidays, many countries have much longer ones. Students in both the USA and Russia usually have a 3 month break and in Sweden, which some polititicians look to as a good example for educational results, students have a 10 weeks off school.

 

How does using these statistics help to strengthen the argument here? Tick two boxes.

CORRECT ANSWER
It shows that British students and teachers do not get it easy compared to the rest of the world.
It shows that other countries can have good results and still have long holidays.
EDDIE SAYS
By using these statistics, the writer is strengthening the argument. In Sweden, which (as the writer states) is a country with a good education system, students have 10 weeks holiday every summer. This reinforces the writer's argument that good results can still be achieved if students have a longer summer holiday.
  • Question 3

The benefits of long holidays:

When the time is used correctly, a break from school can be as educationally stimulating, if not more so, than being in a stuffy classroom. Young people can join in any number of experiences which will support their development as people, and result in them becoming better citizens as adults, such as: _____________________.

 

Which of the following activities would help to support this argument? Tick three boxes.

CORRECT ANSWER
camping
playing a sport
visiting a museum
EDDIE SAYS
Camping, playing sport or cultural visits such as a museum would support this argument better than shopping or watching TV.
  • Question 4

Using a counter argument:

There are those who argue that students and teachers do not need a six week break from school. They say that they are lazy and will waste the time; that it is better to be in school learning something than 'getting bored' at home. I object to this for several reasons: Firstly, students and teachers are not 'lazy'. This argument is partly down to jealousy; most adults do not get as long holidays as teachers do, true. But most adults do not work as many hours as teachers do in term time. Also, students often have homework or coursework to complete over the summer, so most of them are still working, just not at school.

 

Why has the writer used inverted commas: '   ' around the words 'getting bored' and 'lazy'? How does this add to the argument?

CORRECT ANSWER
It shows that those opinions are not shared or believed to be true by the writer.
EDDIE SAYS
By using inverted commas, these words stand out and this insinuates that the writer does not believe these opinions.
  • Question 5

Using counter-argument and emotive language:

There is a strong argument made which states that, for some students, their lives outside of school are so bad that it is better for them to be in school. At school, they are listened to, helped by other students and teachers, kept safe and warm and some are provided with a hot meal. Not all students get this at home. This is true and a valid point; however, it is also true that, for some students, bullying at school makes their lives more miserable than they would be at home, so this needs to be considered as part of that argument, too.

 

How does the writer cleverly counter the use of emotive language?

CORRECT ANSWER
With another emotive argument from the other side.
EDDIE SAYS
The writer counters the use of emotive language - to describe the students whose lives are not good outside of school - with the emotive argument stating that school is not a safe haven for everyone as some children are bullied.
  • Question 6

Using rhetorical questions:

Instead of adults arguing about the pros and cons of longer holidays, why not _______________________________?

 

Which of the following would be the BEST rhetorical question to use there?

CORRECT ANSWER
ask students themselves what they think?
EDDIE SAYS
By using the word "adults" at the beginning of the paragraph, the best rhetorical question would be to ask students themselves what they think.
  • Question 7

How to develop the argument:

Rather than campaign for shorter holidays for everyone, politicians should be working to make sure that all students have access to decent activities and play facilities throughout the summer, close to where they live. That way, everyone can enjoy the summer and come back to school having had a good break.

 

Good development of an argument will include _____________________.

CORRECT ANSWER
ideas for where to go from here
EDDIE SAYS
A good logical argument not only argues for or against something, but also gives suggestions for how the situation can be improved in the future.
  • Question 8

Conclusion:

Although there are always going to be people who, for whatever reason, do not make the most of the summer break, the majority of students do. Therefore, we should have longer holidays, not shorter ones, so that students can learn things outside of the classroom and develop new skills.

 

Which connective is used here to summarise the writer's position? Write it in the text box below.

CORRECT ANSWER
therefore
EDDIE SAYS
'Therefore' is used to conclude the argument and to connect the writer's final statement with the argument throughout.
---- OR ----

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