Grade level:


Approximate Lesson Duration:

50 minutes

Unit/Lesson New Jersey Student Learning Standards (NJSLS):

L.6.1; L.7.1; and L.8.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when speaking and writing

Brief Summary of Cultural Competencies Related to the Unit/Lesson:

Pronouns are an important part of our daily lives. Often pronouns are used to signal to others a person’s gender, and the correct use of someone’s pronouns sends a clear message to them that they are accepted for who they are. By incorporating even a simple moment in a grammar lesson, teachers can send a clear message of acceptance to students and teach them some basic ways to be an ally to any transgender friends or family they have.

Lesson Overview:

Essential Question(s)
  • What role do pronouns play in writing and why are they used?
  • How can the use of pronouns affect someone’s daily life?
Enduring Understanding(s)
  • Pronouns can help break up grammar and keep writers from using the same words repetitively
  • Pronouns can be a simple way to show support to transgender individuals and can help affirm their identity
Potential Misconceptions

Students and teachers may believe that “singular they” is a grammatically incorrect usage of the pronoun. However, this can be avoided by discussing real-life examples of the pronoun used this way and by looking at examples of singular they in the literary canon.

Learning plan, experiences, intstruction and learning activities:

What is Expected?
  • List the intentional learning objectives on the board.

Students will be able to:

  • Use a HyperDoc to gather information on pronouns
  • Participate in practice activities to correctly use pronouns

After taking interactive notes on a HyperDoc related to pronouns, I will be able to use singular and plural pronouns correctly in sentences with 100% accuracy.

What is expected?
How will we hook (Introduce this to) the students?
  • Activate thinking
  • Consider the language you will use to introduce the lesson (See example in the table)

Link to Engagement

Today, we’re going to look at the role pronouns play in our writing and our daily lives. We’re starting to use interesting word choices, but a review of pronouns will help strengthen our writing.

What equipment, resources, or materials are needed?

Class set of computers, headphones for students, projector*

*Making hard copy versions of the HyperDoc and using textbooks or printed resources can also be done if the school isn’t a 1/1 district or computer/internet access is limited

How will we rethink or revise our thinking throughout the lesson?
  • What learning is confirmed?
  • What misconceptions are uncovered?
  • What is your new thinking?
  • Students will have some clarification on gender identity and the role pronouns can play on it
  • Students may uncover the misconception that there are only two genders
  • Students will learn that language is constantly evolving, and the role that gender identity can play in the way it is currently doing so
How will students self-evaluate and reflect on their learning?

Students will be challenged to check for understanding of the topic throughout the lesson in HyperDoc activities, and they will have the opportunity to ask for verbal clarification on what they do and do not understand about the topic and its impact on daily life in class discussions and an “exit ticket” in the HyperDoc.

How will we tailor learning to varied needs, interests, and learning styles?

The HyperDoc will include a mixture of text and video-based sources for information. Activities will have a mixture of independent and collaborative assessments to help interpersonal and intrapersonal learners alike.

How will we organize the sequence of learning during the lesson?
Activity Model, Guided Practice, Independent Practice, or Other?
1. Do Now: Students will log on to their computers and open the pronouns HyperDoc. Once logged on, they will read the Daily News box at the top of the HyperDoc and complete the discussion prompt in the box with a partner. Hook/Do Now
2. Model HyperDoc Use and Note Taking: Model how to use the HyperDoc links for students and explain what they will be doing. “At your own pace, you will first read the article explaining the role of pronouns in grammar. Then, in the text box under the link, list at least three things you learned about pronouns.” You can also list one fact in the text box as an added example of what you are looking for. Model
3. Student Note Taking: Give students 10-15 minutes to look over the resources and list information in the text boxes. As they use the resources, circulate the room to clarify information, provide feedback on the notes they are taking, and to redirect if needed. Guided/Independent Practice
4. Classroom Review: Have students list any questions they have on the board. Help clarify misunderstandings they may have based on the questions. Then, check for understanding by projecting 2-4 sentences and having students identify pronouns in them verbally. Guided Practice
5. Classroom Challenge: To further check for understanding, set a timer for 2-3 minutes (based on your assessment of your class’s ability and speed). Have students work in pairs or small groups as a team to find as many pronouns in a short passage on the HyperDoc as they can find. If you use rewards in class for challenges, you could use this as a brief competition to find the most pronouns in a short time period. Independent Practice
6. Explore Further Resources: Explain to students that even though pronouns have always been around, how they are used sometimes changes. Give them 10 minutes to look at resources of their choice on the HyperDoc regarding the use of singular they and gender neutral pronouns. As they explore, circulate the room to help clarify any points of confusion.

While students are exploring, they should type in the provided text boxes things they learned, thoughts they have, and questions they still have about the topic.

Independent Practice/Possibly Guided via student conferencing
7. Discuss/Clarify with class Q&A: Ask students what questions they currently have about pronouns. Explain to students that in some formal academic settings (such as standardized tests), some gender neutral pronouns might not be recognized, but that students can code switch in those settings. Make sure they understand that as a rule of thumb if someone asks them to use a specific set of pronouns to refer to them with, they should do so. Other
8. Exit Ticket: Give students a small handout with 3-4 pronoun practice sentences in a fill-in-the-blank format. Students should complete the handout and hand it in before they leave. Independent Practice


Check for understanding:

(Formative evidence such as conferencing, group Q/A, teacher observation, exit-slip, etc.)
  • Conferencing
  • HyperDoc notes
  • Group Q/A
  • Exit slip
Quiz/Test (optional):
(attach copy of assessment)


Performance Task/Project:
(attach rubric)

Works Cited for HyperDoc Resources

Colfer, Eoin. Artemis Fowl Book 1. Ny Talk Miramax Books, 2001.

Forsey, Caroline. “Gender Neutral Pronouns: What They Are & How to Use Them.” Hubspot.Com, 2018, Accessed 3 Sept. 2019.

Nunberg, Geoff. “NPR Choice Page.” Npr.Org, 2019, Accessed 3 Sept. 2019.

“Pronouns.” What Is a Pronoun? Types of Pronouns and Rules | Grammarly, 8 May 2019, Accessed 3 Sept. 2019.

Sample, Ian. “He, She, or … ? Gender-Neutral Pronouns Reduce Biases – Study.” The Guardian, The Guardian, 5 Aug. 2019, Accessed 7 Sept. 2019.
Simon Says-Let’s Learn English. “Subject and Object Pronouns | English Grammar.” YouTube, 25 Mar. 2018, Accessed 3 Sept. 2019.

Somerville High School. “SHS Gay / Straight Alliance – The Singular They and Other Gender Pronouns.” YouTube, 2 Nov. 2016, Accessed 3 Sept. 2019.

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