Scoring Guide: Narrative ?· Scoring Guide: Narrative Writing Narrative writing re-creates a real or…

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  • Traits of Writing: The Complete Guide for Middle School 2010 Ruth Culham, Scholastic page 4

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    Scoring Guide: Narrative WritingNarrativewritingre-createsarealorimaginedexperience.Itusuallycontainsfourelements:characters,asetting,achronologicalsequenceofevents,andaconflictorproblemtobesolved.Thewritertypicallybuildsinhighpointsbyputtingcharactersintointerestingsituations,weavinginplottwists,incorporatingvividdetails,andcreatingacentralconflictorproblemthatbuildssuspenseandholdsthepiecetogether.

    exceptional

    Startswithaleadthatsetsupthestoryanddrawsinthereader.

    Containscharactersthatarebelievable,fresh,andwelldescribed.Thecharactersgrowandlearn.

    Describesasettingthatisuniqueandrich.

    Featureseventsthatarelogicallysequencedandmovethestoryforward.Timeandplaceworkinharmony.

    Isacompletestorythathasneverbeentoldorisanoriginaltwistonafamiliarstory.Theplotiswelldeveloped.Thereisakeyconflictorproblemthatiscompellingandeventuallysolved.

    Featureswell-usedliterarytechniques,suchasforeshadowingandsymbolism.

    Leavesthereaderfeelingintrigued,delighted,surprised,entertained,and/orinformed.

    Endssatisfyinglybecausethekeyconflictorproblemissolvedthoughtfullyandcredibly.

    Strong

    refining

    Startswithaleadthatsetsthescene,butispredictableorunoriginal. Containscharactersthatareabittoofamiliar.Thecharactersshowlittlechangeintheirthinkingor

    understandingasthestorymovesalong. Offersasettingthatisnotdescribedallthatwell. Featureseventsthataregiventhesamelevelofimportance.Significantonesminglewithtrivialones,and

    sometimesstrayfromthemainstoryline. Isanearlycompletestorythatmaynotcontainnewororiginalthinking.Theplotmovesforward,butthen

    stumbles.Minorconflictsandproblemsdistractfrommajorones. Containsexamplesofliterarytechniquessuchasforeshadowingandsymbolismthatarenotallthateffective. Leavesthereaderengagedatsomepoints,detachedatothers. Endsbyprovidingthereaderwithasenseofresolution,butheorshemayalsofeelunsatisfiedorperplexed.

    developing

    emerging

    Startswithaleadthatisperfunctory:Imgoingtotellyouaboutthetime Containscharactersthatdontfeelreal.Theunconvincingcharactersarestereotypesorcardboardcutouts. Offersasettingthatisnotatalldescribedclearlyand/orcompletely. Featuressimple,incompleteeventsthatdontrelatetooneanotherand/oradduptoanythingmuch.Thereis

    amismatchbetweenthetimeandplace. Isastorythatjumpsaroundillogically.Thereisnoclearconflictorproblemtobesolved. Containsnoexamplesofliterarytechniquesor,atmost,poor,purposelessones Leavesthereaderfrustratedand/ordisappointed.Heorshefeelsthestorywasnotthoughtoutbeforeit

    wascommittedtopaper. Finisheswithnoclearendingor,atmost,ahalfheartedattemptatanending,leavingthereaderwondering

    whyheorshebotheredtoreadthepiece.

    rudimentary

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  • Traits of Writing: The Complete Guide for Middle School 2010 Ruth Culham, Scholastic page 5

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    Scoring Guide: Expository WritingTheprimarypurposeforexpositorywritingistoinformorexplain,usingreliableandaccurateinformation.Althoughusuallyassociatedwiththeresearchreportortraditionalessay,expositorywritingneedntalwayscontainjustthefacts.Thewritermightincludepersonalexperiences,detailsfromhisorherlife,toenliventhepiece.Strongexpositorywritinghasanauthoritative,knowledgeable,andconfidentvoicethataddscredibility.

    exceptional

    Delvesintowhatreallymattersaboutthetopic.

    Offersaninsidersperspective.

    Providesunexpectedorsurprisingdetailsthatgobeyondtheobvious.

    Isfocused,coherent,andwellorganized.

    Invitesthereadertoanalyzeandsynthesizedetailstodrawhisorherownconclusions.

    Isburstingwithfascinating,originalfactsthatareaccurateand,whenappropriate,linkedtoaprimarysource.

    Containsanecdotesthatbringthetopictolife.

    Anticipatesandanswersthereadersquestions.

    Staysonpointandcontainsacompellingvoiceuntiltheend.

    Strong

    refining

    Providesanoverviewofthetopicandonlyafewkeyfacts.

    Offerstheperspectiveofanoutsiderlookingin.

    Lacksfreshthinkingorsurprises.Reliestooheavilyoncommonknowledge.Providesmostlymundane,predictabledetailsaboutthetopic.

    Isrelativelyfocused,coherent,andorganized.Generallystaysontopic.

    Containsfocuseddescriptions,butalsofuzzyones.Thewriterdoesntconsistentlyconnectthedots.

    Includesfactsthataresomewhatsuspiciousandnotlinkedtoprimarysources.

    Featuresfew,ifany,anecdotestobringthetopictolife

    Doesnotanticipatethereadersquestions.

    Speaksinaspottyvoicecommandingonemoment,cautiousthenext.

    developing

    emerging

    Missesthemainpointcompletely.Thewriterspurposeisnotclear.

    Offersacompleteoutsidersperspective.

    Containsdetailsthatarecompletelyunrelatedtothemaintopic.

    Isunfocused,incoherent,andpoorlyorganized.

    Makessweepingstatements.Nothingnewisshared.

    Lacksfascinating,originalfacts.Anyfactsthepiecedoescontainareseeminglyinaccurateorunsupported.

    Containsnoanecdotestobringthetopictolife.

    Doesnotanticipatethereadersquestions.Infact,thepiececontainsnoevidencethatthewriterhasthoughtaboutaudienceatall.

    Requiresenergytoreadfrombeginningtoend.

    rudimentary

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  • Traits of Writing: The Complete Guide for Middle School 2010 Ruth Culham, Scholastic page 6

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    Scoring Guide: Persuasive WritingPersuasivewritingcontainsastrongargumentbasedonsolidinformationthatconvincesthereadertoembracethewriterspointofview.Sometimespersuasivewritingisacalltoaction,suchasadonationsolicitationfromacharitableorganization.Othertimes,itsanattempttochangeattitudes,suchasanop-edpieceinyourlocalnewspaper.Regardlessoftheformat,thewritingneedstobeclear,compelling,andwellsupported.Thewritershouldnotwaverinhisorherposition.

    exceptional

    Influencesthereadersthinkingthroughsoundreasoningandacompellingargument.

    Containsopinionsarethatwellsupportedbyfactsandpersonalexperiences.Differencesbetweenopinion,facts,andpersonalexperiencesareclear.

    Takesapositionthatisdefensibleandlogical.

    Exposesweaknessesofotherpositions.

    Avoidsgeneralitiesandexaggerations.

    Includesmanymomentsofsoundreasoningandjudgment.

    Revealsonlythebestevidencetomakethestrongeststatementpossible.

    Connectstoalargertruth.

    Strong

    refining

    Raisesquestionsforthereader,butmayfailtopersuadehimorherbecausethethinkingissuperficialandonlyhintsatsomethingdeep.

    Mixesopinions,facts,andpersonalexperiences.Thepiecereliesonemotionmorethantruth.Datamaybepresent,butnotusedtofulleffect.

    Containsanargumentthatstartsoutstrong,butfades.Offersfewnewinsightsintothetopic.

    Attemptstoexposeholesinotheropinions,withmixedresults.

    Featuresgeneralitiesorexaggerations,butalsoconcreteinformationandclearexamples.

    Includesafewmomentsofsoundreasoningandjudgment.

    Containssomeevidencethathitsthemarkandsomethatveersoffcourse.

    Waffles.Manystatementsareplausiblewhileothersarefar-fetched,leavingthereaderunconvinced.

    developing

    emerging

    Doesnotinfluencethereader.Thewritersthinkingandreasoningisvulnerabletoattack.

    Aboundswithopinionsthatarenotsupportedbyfactsorpersonalexperiences.

    Takesapositionthatisnotclearornotcredible.Theargumentisillogicalorimplausible.

    Ignorestheopposingsideoftheargument.

    Offersonlygeneralitiesandexaggerationsnohardfactsthatcouldswaythereader.

    Includesnomomentsofsoundreasoningandjudgment.

    Lackstheevidencenecessaryforthereadertotakeastand.

    Doesnotquestionordoesnotprobe.Thepiecemissesthetarget.

    rudimentary

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