End of Unit Assessment: Final Essay | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G6:M2B:U1:L13

End of Unit Assessment: Final Essay

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and concepts using relevant information that is carefully selected and organized. (W.6.2)
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (W.6.4)
  • I can use evidence from a variety of grade-appropriate texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.6.9)

Supporting Targets

  • I can write the best draft of my essay.
  • I can use transitional words and phrases to make my essay flow smoothly.
  • I can provide constructive feedback to a peer.

Ongoing Assessment

  • End of Unit 1 Assessment: Revised Writing about Medieval Times 

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening

A. Unpacking Learning Targets (3 minutes)

2. Work Time

A. Mini Lesson: Reviewing Transitions (5 minutes)

B. Peer Critique of Introducing and Concluding Paragraphs (10 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment

A. Writing Final Essay (22 minutes)

4. Homework

A. If you didn't finish writing your final essay, do so for homework. Be prepared to return it at the beginning of the next lesson.

  • This lesson is an opportunity for students to review and revise their essays.
  • Some students may not finish their final draft during this lesson. Consider whether to allow them to finish their essays at home and hand them in at the beginning of the next lesson.
  • In advance: Ensure that student draft essays have been assessed with teacher feedback in preparation for this lesson. Give specific positive feedback for at least one thing each student did well (star), and one specific area of focus for each student for revision (step). Assess the essays against Rows 2 and 4 of the NYS Grades 6-8 Expository Writing Rubric.
  • Post: Learning targets.

Vocabulary

constructive

Materials

  • Model Essay: Adversity Faced by Townspeople in the Middle Ages (from Lesson 9; one per student)
  • Peer Critique Guidelines (one to display)
  • New York State Grades 6-8 Expository Writing Evaluation Rubric (from Lesson 9; one per student and one to display)
  • Document camera
  • Introductory and concluding paragraphs (one per student written in the previous lesson)
  • Stars and Steps recording form (one per student)
  • End of Unit 1 Assessment Prompt: Adversity in the Middle Ages (from Lesson 9; one to display)
  • Materials for writing (computers or lined paper)
  • Body paragraphs with teacher feedback (from Lesson 11 or Lesson 12; one per student)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Unpacking the Learning Targets (3 minutes)

  • Invite students to read the learning targets with you:

* "I can write the best draft of my essay."

* "I can use transitional words and phrases to make my essay flow smoothly."

* "I can provide constructive feedback to a peer."

  • Ask :

* "What does constructive mean in this context?"

  • Select students to share their responses with the whole group. Listen for them to explain that in this context, constructive means feedback that will help peers to improve their work.
  • Tell students that in this lesson, they will provide feedback to a peer and write the final copy of their essay.
  • Learning targets are a research-based strategy that helps all students, especially challenged learners.
  • Posting learning targets allows students to reference them throughout the lesson to check their understanding. The learning targets also provide a reminder to students and teachers about the intended learning behind a given lesson or activity.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Mini Lesson: Reviewing Transitions (5 minutes)

  • Remind students that transitional words and phrases make a sentence or paragraph flow into the next.
  • Invite them to reread the Model Essay: Adversity Faced by Townspeople in the Middle Ages and to underline the transitional words and phrases they notice.
  • Select volunteers to share the words and phrases they underlined with the whole group.
  • Ask students to discuss with an elbow partner:

* "What impact do the transitional words and phrases have on the way the text reads?"

  • Cold call students to share their responses. Listen for them to explain that transitional words and phrases make the text flow smoothly when you read it.
  • Analyzing a model for certain features, such as transitional words and phrases, can enable students to recognize and understand what a good example looks like in order to know what their work should look like.

B. Peer Critique of Introductory and Concluding Paragraphs (10 minutes)

  • Remind students that peer critique is when we look over someone else's work and provide feedback. Explain that peer critiquing must be done carefully because we want to be helpful to our peers so they can use our suggestions to improve their work. We don't want to make them feel bad. Post the Peer Critique Guidelines and invite students to read them with you.
  • Display the New York State Grades 6-8 Expository Writing Evaluation Rubric using a document camera and ask students to refer to their own copies. Explain that students will critique the introductory and concluding paragraphs written in the previous lesson.
  • Focus students on the first row, Content and Analysis, and the 3 column, which reads: "clearly introduce a topic in a manner that follows from the task and purpose." Explain that they will use this criterion when looking at their partner's introductory paragraph.
  • Focus students on the third row, Coherence, Organization and Style, and the 3 column, which reads: "provide a concluding statement or section that follows from the topic and information presented." Explain that students will use this criterion when looking at their partner's concluding paragraph.
  • Tell students that they will present feedback in the form of stars and steps. Remind them that they have done this before, in the first module. Today they will give one "star" and one "step" based on each part of the rubric they are using.
  • Briefly model how to give "kind, specific, helpful" stars. Be sure to connect your comments directly to the rubric. For example:

* "You have introduced the topic in a way that sets up answering the question presented in the prompt."

  • Repeat, briefly modeling how to give "kind, specific, helpful" steps. For example:

* "Would it would be a good idea to provide a little more information about the group of people you are describing so that the reader has some background information on who they were?"

  • Emphasize that asking a question of the writer is often a good way to provide feedback for steps to improve work. For example:

* "I wonder if ...?"

* "Have you thought about ...?"

* "I'm not sure what you meant by ..."

  • Distribute the Stars and Steps recording form. Explain that students will record the star and step for a partner on this sheet so that their partner can remember the feedback received. Students should write their partner's name at the top of the form.
  • Pair up students. Invite pairs to swap introductory and concluding paragraphs and to spend 3 minutes reading them in silence.
  • Ask students to record a star and step for each criterion for their partner on the recording form. This form is designed to help them remember the feedback they want to give to their partner from the peer critique. Circulate to assist students who may struggle with articulating or recording their feedback.
  • Ask students to return the introductory and concluding paragraphs and the Stars and Steps recording form to their partner and to explain the star and step they recorded for their partner. Invite students to question their partners if they don't understand the star or step they have been given.
  • Set up peer critiquing carefully to ensure that students feel safe giving and receiving feedback. Students must be given a set of clear guidelines for behavior, and they need to see the teacher model how to do it successfully. Asking pairs to provide feedback to each other based on explicit criteria benefits both students in clarifying what a strong piece of writing should look like. Students can learn from both the strengths and the weaknesses they notice in the work of peers.

Closing & Assessments

Closing

A. Writing Final Essay (22 minutes)

  • Display and, if needed, review the End of Unit 1 Assessment Prompt: Adversity in the Middle Ages (from Lesson 9).
  • Be sure students have materials for writing (computer or lined paper).
  • Distribute body paragraphs with teacher feedback to students and invite them to spend 5 minutes reading through the feedback they have been given.
  • Tell students that they are going to apply the teacher feedback they have been given on the body paragraphs and the stars and steps from the peer critique to write their final essay. Tell them that if they have any questions about the teacher feedback, they are to write their names in a list on the board and you will get to them one by one as soon as they begin working.
  • Remind students that this is an assessment, so they are to work independently without talking to classmates.
  • Circulate around the room, addressing questions. Consider checking in first with students who need extra support to make sure they can use their time well.
  • Collect essays and drafts from students who have finished by the end of the lesson. Invite those who haven't finished to take their essays home and return them at the beginning of the next lesson.

Homework

Homework
  • If you didn't finish writing your final essay, do so for homework. Be prepared to return it at the beginning of the next lesson.

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