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STAAR Expository Writing

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Gala Arambula

on 29 June 2014

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Transcript of STAAR Expository Writing

How does an Expository prompt look on the STAAR?
It has main sections.
Students should examine and follow directions for each section, one at a time.
Students are often either lazy or confused about this.
Practice-Reminders-Practice-Reminders

Prompts focus on issues/questions that don’t require student to bring particular background information or knowledge into the test.
Requires students to clearly explain what they think about something.

What are some misconceptions to avoid-at least for STAAR?
The five paragraph essay is an actual form.

The formula is just a starting point; it’s necessary to move students into sophisticated writing.

The formula is a helpful tool for students who struggle.

The formula prepares students for standardized tests.

The formula prepares students for college writing.
Gala Arambula
Liz Bennett
2014 MISD Summer Curriculum Conference


Assessed at 9th grade level.
2 essays on the test.
1 essay is a field essay but
Shhhh! Don’t tell students.
Students should allow 1 hour each for the expository essays.


How does the expository essay fit into the EOC?



What is The 9th grade Expository Essay?

Reading and Writing points are added for a single score.
Reading and Writing contribute equally to the total score.
Reading 50%
Writing 50%
24% writing multiple choice
26% essay
2 people grade, and a third person grades
if the scores do not agree.


Follow the steps as they are written on the paper.
Read the following quotation.
Take risks. Ask big questions. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; if you don’t make mistakes, you’re not reaching far enough.
—David Packard, co-founder of Hewlett-Packard

Highlight the important words
T
ake risks. Ask big questions. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; if you don’t make mistakes, you’re not reaching far enough.
Look up any unfamiliar words.
Read the "Read"
Read the "Think"
Taking a risk means acting without knowing whether the outcome will be good. Think carefully about this statement.
Taking a risk means acting without knowing whether the outcome will be good. Think carefully about this statement.
Highlight important words. Look up any words that are unfamiliar.
Think Actively
This means brainstorm ideas.
Things on which we might take a risk.
Trying out for a team
Read the "write"
Write an essay explaining why it is sometimes
necessary to take a chance.
Highlight the task

chance
noun
1.
the absence of any cause of events that can be predicted, understood, or controlled: often personified or treated as a positive agency:
2.
luck or fortune: a game of chance.
3.
a possibility or probability of anything happening: a fifty-percent chance of success.
4.
an opportune or favorable time; opportunity: Now is your chance.
5.
Baseball. an opportunity to field the ball and make a put-out or assist.
Brainstorm again:
Take a chance
trying out for a team
Pick 2 or 3 and decide on possible outcomes.
try out for at team
make team
not make team
make friends
scholarship
have fun
Pick the key point and consider different aspects of it.
Write an essay explaining why it is sometimes necessary to take a chance.
Realize it is not for you and explore other possibilities.
Try harder for next time
Now it is time to develop a thesis or topic sentence.
Fold your paper in two on the short edge leaving a tab on the bottom piece

Cut the top piece into 4 tabs

Explain why it is sometimes necessary to take a chance.
Write prompt
Identify subject
So why would I take a risk?
Reward!
Rewards
make team
have fun
friends
scholarship
Turn subject into a guiding question.
Why is it sometimes necessary to take a chance to reap rewards?
Subject + question
Answer your question
with a statement.
It's important to take chances in order to reap rewards.
It's important to take chances in order to reap rewards.
This is a basic thesis.
One key to success is to refine the thesis into something less formulaic.
Refine this statement into a working thesis
Achieving rewards sometimes involves taking a chance
What are some reasons for a 0 on an essay?
blank
another language
unreadable
totally off topic
art work
short-just a few sentences
Objectives:
We will learn the roll of the expository essay in the English I STAAR.
We will examine the expectations for student performance.
We will learn new strategies for teaching students to analyze the prompt.
We will learn new strategies for teaching students to compose better essays.
I will practice useful methods for teaching expository essays to take back to my classroom.
We will examine the Expository essay rubric.
I will apply the rubric to student essays.
Overview of the Expository Essay
Let's unpack a prompt.
Let's take a look at a released prompt.
Hint: Look up the key words in the dictionary-even if you know what they mean.
Expository Essay

Once you have a sophisticated thesis, look back at the instructions under the prompt.
I have to...
It is a clear explanation vs. a compelling argument.
The student is NOT TRYING to convince the reader to think a certain way or to accept a single viewpoint as valid.
Students may use 1st or 3rd person, but should avoid "one."
brainstorm and generate a working thesis
make a graphic organizer before I write
outline and use the dictionary and thesaurus
edit for correctness-spelling, grammar,
good transitions, other conventions.
1.
2.
3.
4.
try out for a team
Try out for a team
make it
not make it
get to participate
learn to accept failure
first body paragraph
second body paragraph
Let's examine a rubric.
Some Final Suggestions for Success.
Start early in the year with students writing short journals from EOC type prompts.
Use whole class guided practice for breaking down the prompts.
As they write stop by their desks and offer suggestions for improvement.
Give them notes to keep on index cards with basic instructions. Allow them to use the cards until close to the EOC. (The literature book has some good resources.)
Right before EOC, conduct individual conferences to offer advice on polishing their essays.
Scoring:
0-blank,another language,,unreadable,totally off topic,art work
short-just a few sentences
1-doesn't address prompt, weak structure, no details, weak support
2-no clear thesis or topic sentence, very little detail,'
3-(ON-LEVEL)-Clear but simple position, simple sentences, weak voice, formulaic
4-Insightful thesis, thoughtful development of iedas, logical structure, interesting/unique details, sentence variety, clear voice
Add scores for final score.
Prompts are written to elicit an explanatory
response that reflects the students' own
thinking about their lives and the world.
Students must pass the essay to pass the test!
The graders don't
want to see
essays written
to a formula.
1
2
3
This is the fourth step!
What are some take aways?
Full transcript