Artifact – Deconstructing an Expository Essay

Topic: Deconstructing an Expository Essay
CLI Strategy: Artifact
Subject: ELA – Expository Writing/Reading 
Grade: Middle/High

Students will be able to: Analyze and interpret the parts and order of an expository essay.


  • Cut up short (1 page) expository essay into paragraphs. Put pieces in an envelope. (Example Essay about Volleyball)
  • Explain to students that you need their help putting the essay back together
  • Pull out a paragraph under ladybug/projector. Ask students to help you look at it.
    • Describe: What words or sentences stick out to you?
    • Analyze: How do those words or sentences help this paragraph? What do they tell us about the paragraph’s function?
    • Relate: Where do you think this paragraph might go in the order of the essay? How do we know that?
  • Now Pass out a paragraph to each group and have them move through the same process.
  • Have each group share out what they found. Have class help you put back together essay.


  • Pass out a “cut up” essay to each group and have them move through the process on their own.


  • What did we do in this activity?
  • What did the paragraphs include that helped us to know where they went?
  • What from this activity will you consider when you are writing your expository essay?

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