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Writing on Demand for the Common Core State Standards Assessments

By Kelly Sassi, Anne Ruggles Gere, Leila Christenbury

Help your students develop as writers and gain the skills they need to succeed on the essay portions of high-stakes tests. This book provides teachers with the principles of effective writing and then shows how to apply those principles to the CCSS assessments. 

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Full Description

What will students be asked to do when faced with the writing tasks on the Common Core State Standards assessments?  What are the instructional shifts teachers will need to make so that students can understand and master them?  Kelly Sassi and Anne Ruggles Gere unpack the PARCC and Smarter Balanced approaches to writing assessment, and provide effective strategies to help students develop as writers as well as prepare for the new writing tasks.

Writing on Demand for the Common Core State Standard Assessments provides teachers with the principles of effective writing and then shows how to apply those principles to the Common Core assessments.  Samples of performance tasks with student responses illustrate the importance of helping writers:

  • analyze prompts, including those of Smarter Balanced and PARCC
  • build reading skills that support text-dependent writing
  • transfer writing strategies to science and social studies
  • manage time in a digital space.

Producing an effective piece of writing can be challenging in any timed writing context.  Give your students the strategies they’ll need to succeed on the Common Core State Standards writing assessments— and become better writers for life.

Additional Resource Information

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Companion Resources

1.1  Pedagogical Shifts Demanded by Common Core State Standards
1.2  Common Core Anchor Standards in Writing
1.3  Chart of Grade Level Changes in the Common Core Writing Standards
1.4  Common Core Anchor Standards in Reading
1.5  Common Core Anchor Standards in Language
1.6  Structure of the Cognitive Process Dimension of the Revised Taxonomy
1.7  Bloom’s Taxonomy Applied to Common Core Anchor Standards
1.8  Framework for Success in Postsecondary Writing: Summary Chart
1.9  Framework for Success in Postsecondary Writing: Full Document

2.1  Common CCSS Assessment Terms
2.2  Text Complexity in Appendix A of the CCSS
2.3  Coh-Metrix Text Analysis
2.4  “Reading Instruction for All Students” by NCTE
2.5  May 29, 2013 SBAC Sample ELA Test
2.6  Biography of Amelia Earhart
2.7  Two Seventh Graders’ Essays on Amelia Earhart
2.8  Prompt Analysis Questions

3.1  PARCC ELA Grade 11 Summative Assessment
3.2  Maxwell’s Levels of Writing
3.3  Informational Text Direction Styles Lesson
3.4  Racism in Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry and in Today’s World

4.1  Pattern for Making a Cube
4.2  ABCD-E Protocol
4.3  Model Use of ABCD-E Protocol: “Found Dog”
4.4  Writing Now

5.1  Using Evidence in Writing
5.2  Guiding Questions for Reading Like a Writer
5.3  Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
5.4  Tsunami Diagram
5.5  Common Rhetorical Strategies
5.6  Fill-in-the-Blanks Sentence Exercise

6.1  Fostering High Quality Formative Assessment
6.2  Video on Climate Change
6.3  Climate Change: Exploring Our Understanding of Global Warming
6.4  Climate Change Mini-Lecture PowerPoint
6.5  Global Warming Timeline Fact Sheet
6.6  Peer-Review Rubric
6.7  Peer-Review Rubric for Writing in the Sciences
6.8  Error Chart: Total Number of Errors Identified by the Proofreader

7.1  SBAC ELA Grade 8 Performance Task
7.2  Prompt Analysis Questions
7.3  Rhetorical Strategies
7.4  Generic Rubric
7.5  PARCC 7th Grade Performance Task on Amelia Earhart
7.6  Biography of Sarah Winnemucca
7.7  Position Statement on Machine Scoring
7.8  Professionals Against Machine Scoring of Student Essays

8.1  Five Key Context Analysis Questions
8.2  SBAC 11th Grade Performance Task on Nuclear Power
8.3  Allocating Time in a Writing Test
8.4  “Daedalus and Icarus”
8.5  Prompt Analysis Questions (PAQs) for Creating Rhetorically Based Writing Assignments
8.6  Facebook Assignment

9.1  NCTE Standards
9.2  Grade-Level Breakdown of CCSS Writing Standard #1: Sentences
9.3  CCSS Writing Standard #2 and Sentences
9.4  CCSS Writing Standard #3 and Sentences
9.5  Strategies for Cohesive Ties
9.6  Occasions for Using Transitional Words
9.7  Progression of Language Standard #3
9.8  Identifying Sentence Types
9.9  Sentence Combining Exercises
9.10  Sentence Patterns I
9.11  Sentence Patterns II
9.12  Cued Sentence Combining
9.13  Cumulative Sentence Exercise
9.14  Models for In-Text Citations