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This workshop concentrates on the assessing and evaluating student writing. It investigates ways to help students grow as writers through conversations and written evaluations shared with their teachers and their peers. Grading, portfolio assessment, and high-stakes testing are also part of this workshop.
These are the key points the teachers, educators, authors, and students consider:
- In a classroom community of writers, students can expect a fair, honest, and constructive appraisal of their writing, not only from their teachers but also from their peers.
- As much as students need the opportunity to write, teachers also need the opportunity to respond to that writing. Teachers can respond to student work in writing or through personal conversations. Teachers can respond to works in all stages of development, from pre-writing exercises to final drafts. They need to decide when, to what degree, and in what manner they will react.
- Students need to know how their work will be evaluated and assessed. Rubrics prepared by the teacher or in concert with students can help them do this.
- Portfolios are a good tool for assessing the body of a student's work. There are many ways in which these portfolios can be maintained, managed, and assessed.
- Peer review can be expected to be a part of the writing community. Students need to be given the tools to make cogent and useful comments in peer group review sessions.
- High stakes testing is an expected student experience. Teachers have to decide to what degree and in what manner they will integrate preparation for these tests into their writing community activities.
Hone your skills in evaluating student writing with Arbiter, an interactive activity featuring student essays.
Use Build a Rubric to construct an analytical evaluation of student writing.