“The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle” (and How to Help Your Writers Deliver it with Assessment Reviews)

I came across one of those well-intended but ultimately wrong-minded tweets today while scrolling through Twitter.  It offered advice for “ELA teachers” from someone who isn’t one. It suggested encouraging students to try out a new Microsoft Word feature that will basically auto-suggest (or replace, if I interpreted the gif correctly) segments of student writing […]

Assessing Writing Workshop: FAQ

Gentle readers, when we were last together, I shared some ideas for assessing the spirit of workshop with an emphasis on assessing both process and product without looking for perfection. Instead, in writing workshop, we look for growth. When we consider assessment separate from grading (something too personal, too school-by-school to really make broad recommendations […]

Low stakes writing: How I reclaimed my sanity and unburied myself from grading.

My first year teaching AP Language, I was overwhelmed by the grading. The class culminates in a three hour exam; for two of those hours, students are writing three different essays. The amount of prep your average student needs to confidently bang out three essays asking them to do three different things in two hours? […]