Thanks for all the suggestions. I had some of these same questions before the semester started, but your answers mean so much more to me now that I am in the middle of things. Just an update: I took a step back after the paper #1 rough drafts. I added a lot more thinking and group activities. I posed questions that really helped the students see some of the narrowness of their thinking instead of writing everyone a long list of does and don't. They really rolled with it. We had some awesome class sessions where ideas were flying and light bulbs were burning brightly.
I just read one section of the final drafts, and I was very impressed with my students. They really took things to the next level. I am so glad that I took the time to carefully read the rough drafts because now I feel very connected to each students' progress. My one student with the very inappropriate views on immigrants caught the vision of the assignment and turned in a very progressed version of her first attempt. It still made me a little nervous, but I can really see her progress.
Wish me luck as we dive into paper #2. Thanks again for all your help.