By far one of the biggest “difference makers” for me as a “teacher of writers” has been my use of demand prompts to guide instruction. In our class, we have a balance of free writing, process writing, and demand writing—but for me, the most effective way to ASSESS students is to do a regular demand prompt to see how students are doing on the targets we have worked on all year. Process writing is critical in the classroom, but as students work together, confer, share, revise, and so on—it becomes difficult to know what they can do independently. The resource that follows is a version of what I have done the last 4 years and have found to be the most efficient, effective, and stress-free way to measure student growth and to see what areas I need to provide additional instruction—to individual students, small focus groups, or the entire class. This version is great for collecting quality information at the end of the year for report cards, to send on to the next year's teachers, or to show the students their growth!
The method is simple: Each prompt is graded using the exact same checklist at the top. If you use prompts from multiple sets (descriptive, opinion, narrative), you will see that the top portion of the checklist remains the same, allowing you to measure student growth ALL year. The bottom few lines of the checklist are more specific to the genre of writing. Each set contains 8 different reproducible prompts complete with checklist, class recording sheet, individual student recording sheet, and directions and suggestions for use. This set has 8 quality prompts in a variety of genres--from opinion to narrative to informational. I have even included the same prompts WITHOUT the grading checklist if you just would like to use them as learning activities, not assessments.
Interested in other sets in this series?
Here are a few!
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