The following worksheet was created using the Keys to Literacy approach to answering open response questions. The questions on this sheet were taken from various MCAS and NECAP released sample questions. This sheet was used as part of a writing class taught for students with IEP's that had writing goals. The objective of the sheet (in accordance with the direct instruction and guided practice) was to help students to identify the essential idea behind the question. With support, students were to read the question, underline the important information in the question, (what is the question asking me to do?) and to have them reflect on what they are expected to answer. This is step 1 to a series of steps for answering open response questions.