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Writing

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  1. Ideal for SAT, ACT, AP, and State Assessment Exams Writing ONDEMAND Best Practices and Strategies for Success Anne Ruggles Gere * Leila Christenbury * Kelly Sassi Presentation by Megan LaVoy

  2. Structure • Begins with chapter-themed quote • Explains premise of chapter • Lists, explains, and models activities • Summarizes chapter • Every chapter ends with “We Believe” statements

  3. Overview “Until thoughtful educators are in complete charge of schools and allowed to make and enforce sensible decisions about assessment, teachers will continue to live in a world where externally mandated, large scale, high-stakes tests are an inescapable part of the educational landscape.” “…it appears that high-stakes tests and large-scale assessments are not going away anytime soon.” “The testing system is undeniably flawed, but until real change is initiated, our students must face those tests and must, if they wish to advance their academic careers, do well on those tests. With that reality in mind, we think it is irresponsible to leave our students to fend for themselves.” Writing on Demand, p. 9 “We believe that students can become better learners—and better writers—if they can begin to think about their own learning, about the skills that they are in the process of acquiring.” Writing on Demand, p. 150

  4. Overview, con’t. • Much of this book is geared toward high school level writing • A main theme of this book is teaching students how to teach themselves because we won’t always be around to help them • Goal is to prepare students for writing on demand (ACT / SAT / AP Exams / Essay Exams) • This book is geared more toward upper level students. It is not going to be of as much benefit for teachers of lower grades or students having lower “ability levels” • This book assumes many of its readers will be teaching AP / College Prep / College Bound students

  5. Thinking Backward1 • What teachers can most effectively do to help students consider and meet the requirements of writing on demand • Takes students from acknowledgedmodels back to their rubric and then back to the prompt (see Online 1.1) • Suggests using a Writer’s Notebook to jot down ideas, phrases, quotations, interesting words, etc. • Gives Sample Student Writings for use in the classroom • Encourages student use of rubrics throughout each chapter and activity

  6. Process of Writing2 • History of writing instruction (p. 32) • Pros & Cons of “Traditional Model” for writing • “New Model”: teaching process not product • “Invention Strategies” (brainstorming, listing, listing and forced choice, webbing or clustering, visualizing, free-writing, looping, five Ws, cubing + warning (using too many causes students to be exhausted) (allow freedom of choice)

  7. Process of Writing2 • Revision: re-vision, re-looking, re-working • Editing: review and change word order, sentence structure, check usage issues • Proofreading: last look and verification of final copy • Suggestions for responding, evaluating, and grading • Ways to facilitate Peer Response Writing Groups • Ways / methods for conferencing with students

  8. The Rhetoric of Prompts and Assignments3 • Writing at very explicit levels / steps • Interpreting / decoding a writing prompt • How to think about writing • Gives directions for an activity, then models the activity (online 3.1, 3.2) • Suggests good writing prompts • Emphasizes the importance of constructing good writing prompts

  9. Making Assessment Visible 4 • Students think about HOW they will be assessed (online 4.1) • Peer editing teaches students how to evaluate themselves (online 4.4) • Gives examples of AP exam questions and how to approach them • Gives examples of student complications with writing and suggests ways to prevent / correct the issue • Students practice writing rubrics

  10. Reading for Writing5 • Literary analysis can lead to good writing, if demonstrated explicitly • Have students read and analyze good writing • Analyze openings, closing, word choice / usage, sentences and paragraphs, grammar • Assess what is “right” rather than “wrong”

  11. Contexts: What to Expect When You’re Expecting to Write6 • Look precisely at what we do that makes us good writers • Gives activities for preparing students for on-demand and timed tests • “deadlines” quote p. 139 • “Research shows that students who can produce more words per minute actually write better than those who operate at a lower WPM rate.” • Talk with students about how a test went

  12. Writing in Sentences7 • Importance of sentences (variety = higher marks) • Benefits of good word choice (good word choice = higher marks) • Accidentally incorporate grammar (online 7.1, 7.2, 7.10) • Excellent chapter for specifics of writing (e.g. transitions, sentence patterns, structure, wording, etc.)

  13. Scoring Writing8 • Importance of rubrics and explicit scoring in order to show students where they excel and where they fall short • Peer editing / group evaluation activities

  14. Success at Writing on ACT, SAT, AP, and Essay Exams9 • Highlights expectations / guidelines for AP, SAT, ACT tests • “Our goal has been to not only help students survive the test-intensive atmosphere in which they are being educated today but help them think deeply about the larger picture of their individual development as writers.” p. 247

  15. Companion Website http://books.heinemann.com/writingondemand/