Test writing as genre how to apply what the students already know
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Test Writing as Genre: How to Apply What the Students Already Know. Presented by: Tara Falasco and Kathleen Masone. Test Writing. * What is test writing? * What place does it hold in your classroom? * In what ways do you prepare students for test writing situations?.

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Test writing as genre how to apply what the students already know

Test Writing as Genre: How to Apply What the Students Already Know

Presented by:

Tara Falasco and Kathleen Masone


Test writing

Test Writing

* What is test writing?

* What place does it hold in your classroom?

* In what ways do you prepare students for test writing situations?


Test writing a snapshot how far we have come

Test Writing - A Snapshot How Far We Have Come

1990s: Testing for Grades 4 & 8

2006-2010: Testing for All! (Grades 3-8 testing)

* Grades 3 & 5 have no writing component

Present: Common Core State Standards Testing

*Writing component in all grades

What do you notice about the layout, questioning, and expectations of response?


1990s graphic organizers

1990s: Graphic Organizers


Picture prompts

Picture Prompts


1990s short answer extended response

1990s: Short Answer & Extended Response

Pretend you are a character…

Do you think…

What is the animals’ problem…

Write a news article...


2006 2010 assessment for all

2006-2010: Assessment for All


Test writing as genre how to apply what the students already know

Short Answer

Responses

Extended Responses


Shifts in testing

Shifts in Testing


Short response sample and student response

Short Response Sample and Student Response

What is a theme of the myth “Why the Evergreen Trees Never Lose Their Leaves,”? Use two details from the myth to support your answer.

Write your answer in complete sentences.


Short response rubric

Short Response Rubric

2 Point

The features of a 2-point response are

• Valid inferences and/or claims from the text where required by the prompt

• Evidence of analysis of the text where required by the prompt

• Relevant facts, definitions, concrete details, and/or other information from the text to develop response according to the requirements of

the prompt

• Sufficient number of facts, definitions, concrete details, and/or other information from the text as required by the prompt

• Complete sentences where errors do not impact readability

1 Point

The features of a 1-point response are

• A mostly literal recounting of events or details from the text as required by the prompt

• Some relevant facts, definitions, concrete details, and/or other information from the text to develop response according to the requirements of the prompt

• Incomplete sentences or bullets

0 Point

The features of a 0-point response are

•A response that does not address any of the requirements of the prompt or is totally inaccurate

•No response (blank answer)

•A response that is not written in English

•A response that is unintelligible or indecipherable


Extended response sample prompt

Extended Response Sample Prompt


Now what

Now What?

* What do students need to know/do to meet standards?

* How can we prepare our students for testing situations in authentic ways?


What is a unit of study

What is a Unit of Study?

* A way of planning instruction that focuses curriculum and teaching on the development and deepening of student understanding

* Integrates multiple areas of areas of study

* Helps teachers set a focus, purpose, and pace

*Encourages you to plan with the end result in mind


Short response questions

Short Response Questions…

  • are designed to assess Common Core Reading and Language Standards.

  • are single questions in which students use textual evidence to support

    their own answer to an inferential question.

  • ask the student to make an inference (a claim, position, or conclusion) based on his or her analysis of the passage and then provide two pieces of text-based evidence to support his or her answer.

  • assess a student’s ability to comprehend and analyze text.

  • are answered using complete sentences.

  • should require no more than three complete sentences to be answered.


Extended response questions

Extended Response Questions…

  • are designed to measure a student’s ability to Write from Sources.

  • prompt students to communicate a clear and coherent analysis of one or two texts.

  • involve comprehension and analysis that is directly related to grade specific reading standards.

  • are evaluated on the degree to which they meet grade-level writing and language expectations.

  • are made using a rubric that incorporates the demands of grade specific Common Core Writing, Reading, and Language standards.

  • require that students are evaluated across the strands with a longer piece of writing.


Let s dissect the short response questions

Let’s Dissect the Short Response Questions

3rd Grade

4th Grade

What do you notice? What do they have in common?


Test writing as genre how to apply what the students already know

Let’s Dissect the Short Response Questions

5th Grade

6th Grade

What do you notice? What do they have in common?


Let s dissect the extended response questions

Let’s Dissect the Extended Response Questions

3rd Grade

4th Grade


Let s dissect the extended response questions1

Let’s Dissect the Extended Response Questions

5th Grade

6th Grade


How to incorporate skills into reading workshop

How to incorporate skills into Reading Workshop?

  • Look through standards: what skills do you need to teach?

  • Are there skills you can apply to task writing in general?

  • List mini-lessons to use with picture books to model how to answer short and extended response questions.

  • Create appropriate prompts.

  • What strategies are needed to answer the questions?


Reading workshop mini lessons

Reading Workshop Mini-Lessons

  • Test-takers use the words in the question to

    start their answers.

  • Test-takers go back to the story to find details

    that support their answer.

  • Test-takers use key vocabulary and terms in

    their answers.

  • Test-takers write RAD responses.

  • Test-takers copy details carefully so that

    everything is spelled correctly.


Creating prompts

Creating Prompts

Incorporate grade level standards

2. Look at sample questions focusing on the vocabulary specific to short and extended response questions.

3. Use same format and visuals so that students become comfortable

4. Vary content: social studies, science, etc.


Using prompts

Using Prompts

Model with picture books: use mentor texts that incorporate the elements found in the standards

Apply to their independent reading book

What other areas can we use prompts?


Different prompts

Different Prompts

Unhei’s feelings change about her name from the beginning of the story to the end. How does Unhei feel at the beginning of the story? How does she feel at the end? Why do her feelings change? Use details from the story to support your response.

The life of a child living in the 21st century is very different than the life of a child who lived during the pre-historic New York times. Compare and contrast your life today in the 21st century with the life of a child during pre-historic New York times. Use details from the textbook to support your response.

In your response, be sure to

  • explain how your life and the life of a child during pre-historic New York times were the same

  • explain how your life and the life of a child during pre-historic New York times were different

  • use details from the textbook to support your answer

In your response, be sure to

  • explain how Unhei feels at the beginning of the story

  • explain how Unhei feels at the end of the story

  • explain why her feelings change

  • use details from the story to support your response

Think about one of the characters you read about. What character traits did he/she have? Give at least two specific examples from the text of how the author showed that trait or traits to the reader.


Applying skills to a test

Applying Skills to a Test

The goal of teaching these skills in areas is for students to be comfortable with the layout and types of questions before seeing the test.

By using picture books, TFK magazines, content-area texts, and independent reading books, students get practice without feeling the stress/pressure of “teaching to the test.”


Answering a short response question

Answering a Short Response Question

  • Restate: Use the words from the question to start your answer.

  • Answer: Read question carefully and answer what is being asked.

  • Details: Go back to the story and find the amount of details needed to support your answer.


Planning for an extended response question

Planning for an Extended Response Question

  • First bullet: Restate question

  • 1. and include two details

  • 2. and include two details

Topic Sentence

Bullet #1

  • Second bullet: Restate question

    1. and include two details

    2. and include two details

Bullet #2

Bullet #3

  • Third bullet: Restate question

    1. and include two details

    2. and include two details


Answering an extended response question

Answering an Extended Response Question

In the story, _______________________, by _________________, Thomas’s mood changes from the beginning of the story to the end. At the beginning of the story Thomas feels…

At the end of the story Thomas feels…

His mood changes because...


Test writing as genre how to apply what the students already know

Workshop materials can be found at:

Questions or comments?

Please feel free to contact us.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Tara Falasco: [email protected]

Kathleen Masone: [email protected]


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