A Culture of Writing: Writing Instruction at Washington Elementary

One of the most difficult challenges I have had in my career was to instill a culture of writing at my school. It’s not that we weren’t doing writing at our school, but the question was, “Were we doing the writing effectively across the grades to make our children better writers?” This has been challenge that needed to be met head on during the past years. My quest was to find a writing program where my school could create a culture of writing and utilize this program to improve writing and writing scores across the grade levels.

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4 Tips to Prepare Students for On-Demand Writing

Have you ever worked hard at teaching your class something only to discover that they don’t apply that learning on the test? I’ve noticed many students seem to struggle with on-demand writing during test taking.

On-demand writing: a situation in which students are presented with a prompt (question or scenario) and are given a specific time limit to complete it.

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Response to Text Writing: Text-Dependent vs. Non-Text Dependent Questions

Standards based assessments call for both types of Response to Text writing. Arlynn King and I continued our conversation on Smarter Balanced and PARCC testing with an emphasis on text-dependent vs. non-text dependent questions. 

Non-text dependent questions ask students to communicate their own thinking, self expression and exploration.  Text-dependent questions ask students to respond to sources and answer questions by drawing on evidence from the text in support of their ideas.

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