This is my version of a "performance task," which is basically a culminating assessment at the conclusion of a unit of study. My state has adopted Common Core Standards and will be using Smarter Balanced for assessment. One portion of the assessment is called a "performance task," and I am creating my own versions of performance tasks to help my students be more prepared and confident when the time comes for the Smarter Balanced test.
This is my first attempt at writing a performance task. I used it with 6th graders at the end of a survival-themed novel study. I taught the book Holes (also with Freak the Mighty and The Cay), however, any novel with a survival theme would work. Highlights include: viewing and note taking of the inspiring TED speech by Aimee Mullens "The Opportunity of Adversity," making textual connections (by theme of overcoming obstacles / survival) with the novel; questions for a class Socratic discussion on the concept of transformation (dynamic character / survival theme); argument essay prompt with guided organizers for each paragraph of the five paragraph essay. The essay portion is very structured as my 6th graders are new to writing five paragraph essays and need careful guidance in organizing their ideas.
*NEW* Included in your purchase will be the student guide in Word along with an engaging presentation with links to the speech and interview with Aimee Mullins. The slideshow goes directly with the printable student guide.
The entire performance task took about a week from beginning to finished product. I was very pleased with the level of my students' thinking, engagement, and writing. If you are a middle school teacher looking for Common Core resources, then this would be a great addition to your collection. Enjoy!
**The exe file is for Windows operating systems only. This presentation cannot be viewed on a Mac.