Grade 6 SS/ELA Home
Lesson 1 Lesson 2 Lesson 3
Lesson 4 Lesson 5 Glossary

Lesson 5: Turning Points – Making a Claim about the Neolithic Revolution


  • In this lesson, students will discuss the concept of a turning point, organize an argument to a prompt and complete an argumentative essay.
    Suggested time allowance: 1 Class Period

Unifying Themes: (based primarily on the National Council for the Social Studies)

  • Development, Movement, and Interaction of Cultures
  • Time, Continuity, and Change
  • Geography, Humans, and the Environment
  • Creation, Expansion, and Interaction of Economic Systems
  • Science, Technology, and Innovation

New York State Social Studies Framework

  • Social Studies Standard 2: World History
  • Social Studies Standard 3: Geography
  • Key Ideas and Conceptual Understandings
    • 6.2 The First Humans Through The Neolithic Revolution in the Eastern Hemisphere: The first humans modified their physical environment as well as adapted to their environment
      • 6.2d Historians use archaeological and other types of evidence to investigate patterns in history and identify turning points. A turning point can be an event, era, and/or development in history that has brought about significant social, cultural, ecological, political, or economic change.

Common Core State Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies

  • RH.6-8.1: Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.
  • WHST.6-8.1: Write arguments focused on discipline-specific content.
    1. Introduce claim(s) about a topic or issue, acknowledge and distinguish the claim(s) from alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically.
    2. Support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant, accurate data and evidence that demonstrate an understanding of the topic or text, using credible sources.
    3. Use words, phrases, and clauses to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence.
    4. Establish and maintain a formal style.
    5. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.

Unit Essential Question:

  • Does society change as a consequence of human development or environmental change or both?

Resources/Materials for this lesson:


Day 1:

1. Begin class by asking students to define these two words:

  • Revolution
    • a sudden complete change
    • major change: a dramatic change in ideas or practice
    • a fundamental change in the organization of society that takes place in a relatively shorty period of time
  • Turning Point
    • An important moment of change: a time or incident that marks the beginning of a completely new, and usually better, stage in somebody's life or in the development of something
    • A moment when the course of history is changed
    • a point in time when something happens that causes a shift or an irrevocable change in direction.

2. Project the following prompt for students: “Is the Neolithic Revolution a turning point in world history?’

3. Briefly discuss the characteristics of a turning point.

4. Students should make a claim they are going to defend.

5. Students should complete a T-Chart in which he/she lists evidence that supports the claim that the Neolithic Revolution is a turning point on one side and lists evidence that refutes that claim on the other side.

6. When writing their essays, students should cite two different sources that they analyzed in class to support their claim.

7. Homework: Students will complete essay for homework

Evaluation/ Assessment

  • Argumentative Essay

Vocabulary (See Unit Glossary for definitions)

  • Neolithic Revolution
  • turning point

Integrated Social Studies/English Language Arts Curriculum (Grade 6)
©Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES Curriculum & Instructional Services
Last revised August 31, 2014