This resource arose from a need I had to more frequently measure students’ progress on a few key writing skills that our district rubric doesn't spell out clearly. I found that these skills were going largely ungraded—and I wasn't seeing my students make enough progress.
I knew I didn't want to add MORE to my plate—but I knew I needed something. I decided to try a short (8 minutes!) writing prompt a few times a week. By making it short, I didn't take away from instructional time, I am able to quickly score it and give feedback, and I can use it to pull strategy groups while I teach our district curriculum. I wanted the rubric right on the page as a reminder for students…much like my other writing prompt resources. The difference? This is meant to be a quick snapshot—almost like an entrance slip before a writing class. I figure I can give up 8 minutes a few times a week if it will help me to help my students, right? I figure by giving students a starting topic, we wouldn't waste time thinking of topics either—and each topic should be something that students really can write a decent “quick write” about—they should be able to take these seasonally based topics and make them their own! This isn't meant to be a full essay—just a quick write to check some important skills! This “high interest” set should have topics that appeal to almost all students!
Thus the “Great 8” was born! Just 8 minutes to do…and seriously about a half hour to score…It's worth it!
See also the bundled set of all four resources!
Great Eight: Curriculum Prompts
Great Eight: Seasonal Prompts
Great Eight: Opinion Prompts
Great Eight: High Interest Prompts
Great Eight: Bundled Set
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