Student Growth Goal Submission
All students will show growth in their ability to respond to a written prompt based on an informational text using a prescribed argumentative structure. 75% of my 6th grade students will earn a score of at least 75% on their argumentative response to text writing by spring of 2017. Results will be measured using a rubric focused on structure, elaboration, format, and conventions.
In order to be college and career ready as well as prepared for the requirements of middle school, high school, and college, students need to be able to state a claim and elaborate on it with appropriate and detailed evidence and reasoning.
Of my 44 6th-grade students
- 2 English Language Learners
- 1 special education (Asperger's Syndrome)
- 4 students monitored as at-risk (OR on classroom intervention plan)
- 1 student with a 504 Plan
Common Course Rubric
For my baseline CER assessment, I used a basic CER rubric that focused on the elements necessary for success in writing a Claim-Evidence-Reasoning argumentative response. This rubric was used for the pre and post assessment.
The Excel spreadsheet below demonstrates my student CER assessment scores from their Fall Baseline to their Spring Baseline. In addition, I have included the average percent on quarter 2 and quarter 3 CER writing assignments.
3rd Hour Language Arts
In the beginning of the year, I established a bi-weekly routine to read and analyze argumentative articles (i.e. should junk food be banned from school/cell phones in school) and asked students to brainstorm sides of the argument using a Visible Thinking Routine such as Compass Points or Tug of War. By using these strategies, students were able to clearly visualize and understand the multiple perspectives of an argument before formulating their own claim.
As the year moved forward, students then read multiple articles (2-4) in support of those perspectives. Students highlighted each article based on information they agreed with, disagreed with, or found interesting. They also annotated with additional questions or connections. After gathering research, students created their own claim for a CER and supported it with evidence from the text.
In addition to these isolated topics, students wrote regular CER (3 per novel unit) focused on their narrative text. These CER topics focused on character development, conflicts, and authors craft.
In the future, I also would like to use thinking routines such as Peel the Fruit and See-Think-Wonder to help students be able to differentiate between "evidence" and "reasoning"-each layer being a deeper level of explanation related to their claim.
This bi-weekly routine helped students build their skills for CER writing, as evidenced by the students data pre & post assessment results. All students made gains in their performance from fall to spring, and 75% of my students met the expectation of achieving 75% or better on the post assessment.
Tier 1 Interventions
Overall, students struggled with writing a cohesive, one-sided claim and elaborating in their reasoning to support their textual evidence. To assist students in overcoming this struggle, we completed several Wagon Wheel activities where students identified the differences in student writing between Good-Better-Best. This Wagon Wheel Activity became a tool for students to use for future writing assignments.
In addition, students used a variety of graphic organizers and Visible Thinking Routines to assist in the planning, critical thinking, and execution for their CER writing.
Tier 2 Interventions
Students who continued to struggle with CER writing were pulled in for small-group or one-on-one revision sessions. During these lunch sessions, students worked on revising their CER writing with teacher assistance. Some students required whole-essay rewrites, while others only required minor tweaks.
Tier 3 Intervention
I have 1 student who I believe qualifies for additional intensive writing support. He has worked with an ELL Tutor during class to assist with both his reading and writing skills. I have also recommended to his parents that he receive tutoring support outside of the school day.