Fact and Opinion (Oversimplified?)
First, I want to respond very tardily to Karen’s message. No, I have used neither of the applications (Chinswing and Voicethread) though I have checked them out. My class isn’t currently designed in a way to take advantage of them.
While teaching fact and opinion with the reading class that I am teaching this summer, I summarized opinion as expressing one of two qualities: evaluation or level of certainty. I had not thought this through carefully in advance, but it seemed to work for every example that came up then and since.
While I don’t think this simple two category approach will handle all the real complexities of opinion, I feel it gives a working model that will help students understand the essential nature of identifying an opinion whether in a complex statement or a simple one.