Writing Outcomes

The West Irondequoit Guiding Principles serve as the base for the West Irondequoit English Language Arts Writing Outcomes and their accompanying materials. The value of using complete student models and accompanying, focused commentary connected to specific writing outcomes is an integral part of writing instruction. A variety of student models with accompanying commentary for each of the genre areas (Expository, Creative/Expressive, Literary Analysis, Persuasive) is provided to support writing instruction and to support student independence in the achievement of the writing outcomes.

Grade Level Expository Literary Analysis
3/4 Outcome
· Formulate and maintain a controlling idea or thesis, conveying an individual perspective or insight into the topic.
Model and Commentary
· "The black-capped chickadee is an interesting bird. It has many cool facts. It is a very unique bird." (introductory paragraph)
· "Black-capped chickadees have unique eggs." (body paragraph #4)
· "Chickadees have unique field marks." (body paragraph #7)
The writer introduces the report by indicating that he/she will share information related to the black-capped chickadee, an interesting and unique bird. The writer returns to the controlling idea and supports it in body paragraphs #4 and #7.
Outcome
· Develop and maintain a controlling idea to express personal insights, points of view and attitudes/feelings related to the literature.
Model and Commentary
· "I felt this way because he always finds a clever way out of problems, like when the cat raced him he held on to his tail. I also like him because he is wise and speaks what he thinks." (second and fourth sentence)
The controlling idea is explicitly stated by the writer and offers his/her interpretation of the character's strongest quality. Additionally, the writer offers personal insights and feelings related to the character.
5/6 Outcome
Formulate and maintain a controlling idea or thesis, conveying an individual perspective or insight into the topic.
Model and Commentary
· "Hello, and welcome to Castle de Fischer! Would you like a tour? Well then, come along! Today we will be venturing over a moat, through tunnels and across pathways. We'd better hurry, or they'll close the drawbridge!" (introductory paragraph)
· "If we turn right we'll get to the castle faster. If we turn left it'll be one long stroll!" (body paragraph #2)
The controlling idea is explicitly established by providing information that is seen and learned while touring the castle. In addition, this controlling idea is maintained throughout the piece.
Outcome
Develop and maintain a controlling idea or thesis that establishes a critical stance and/or offers an interpretation of the text(s) based on the features of the genre(s).
Model and Commentary
· "The prince is clever for many reasons. In the story he used his cleverness to help him escape from danger." (introductory paragraph)
· "The first time he shows cleverness is when he must learn how to weave. He learned very quickly, and his carpets were beautiful. Once he became an expert weaver, he was rewarded with an enormous, beautiful, and strong white horse which he soon learns how to ride. (body paragraph)
· "Then, when he was captured by thieves, he used his skill of weaving to save his life." (body paragraph)
· "Furthermore, the prince showed cleverness by persuading the thieves to sell the carpet that he made the king, instead of at the marketplace. If it were sold to the king, they would get more money for it." (body paragraph)
· "After all, the thieves were greedy, and the prince could probably outwit anyone." (body paragraph)
The writer's controlling idea states that the prince is clever. He/she gives an example of events that demonstrate cleverness, citing the problem, and the solution. Further evidence and interpretation to support the claim is also provided. Problem and solution are characteristics of narrative writing.
7/8 Outcome
· Formulate and maintain a controlling ideas or thesis, conveying an individual perspective or insight into the topic
Model and Commentary
· "There are many important aspects of sports announcing...including the history of announcing, some techniques used by sportscasters training of sportscasters, and some famous announcers of past and present." (introductory paragraph)
· "The role of a sportscaster is to bring the game to the fans in a way that the fans will understand and enjoy." (introductory paragraph)
The individual perspective is maintained throughout the piece using carefully chosen facts and opinions that relate to the controlling idea that the profession of sportscasting is "important" and interesting.
Outcome
· Formulate and maintain a controlling idea or thesis that establishes a critical stance and/or offers an interpretation of the text(s) based on the principal features of the genre(s). --singular stance, comparative stance, qualified stance, predicted stance
Model and Commentary
· "Usually, pity is expressed toward others when someone has a disability, like blindness or losing a limb. People also pity themselves, because they may not be capable of doing something." (introductory paragraph)
· "Annie cannot teach Helen properly when Helen is rewarded for misbehaving or when the Kellers stop Annie from punishing Helen." (body paragraph #1)
· "Annie sees the Kellers' pity as enabling Helen, because they make excuses for her and allow her to get away with inappropriate behavior." (body paragraph #2)
· "Instead of pitying himself, and making his life more difficult, the man tries harder to cope with his handicap." (body paragraph #3)
The writer links the controlling idea ("pity is expressed toward others when someone has a disability...People also pity themselves, because they may not be capable of doing something.") from the analysis of the texts to his/her definition of pity. A comparative stance is taken in the analysis of the two pieces of literary text-a play and a poem.
11 Outcome
· Formulate and maintain a controlling ideas or thesis, conveying an individual perspective or insight into the topic
Model and Commentary
· "It is important to clearly define coward so as not to confuse it with other terms, which often happens in society." controlling idea (introductory paragraph)
· "Heroism, chivalry, bravery--the Middle Ages overflowed with courage." Topic sentence (body paragraph #1)
· "Societies, in general, misuse the terms coward and courage; understanding their differences is important in comprehending their meanings." topic sentence (body paragraph #2)
· "A coward, therefore, is someone who fights rather than confronts his problems and difficulties." concluding sentence (body paragraph #2)
· "The silent bystander is a coward, a person who does not advocate for his beliefs." topic sentence (body paragraph #4)
· "Therefore, a coward is someone who ignores reality rather than deals with it." concluding sentence (body paragraph #4)
Topic sentences and closing sentences maintain the controlling idea as well as convey this author's insight into what it means to be a coward.
Outcome
· Formulate and maintain a controlling idea or thesis that establishes a critical stance and/or offers an interpretation of the text(s) based on the principal features of the genre(s). --singular stance, comparative stance, qualified stance, predicted stance
Model and Commentary
· "Rather, the bond between young boys is more physical and concrete; true friendships emerge as boys adventure, discover, and uncover the world together" (introductory paragraph) This statement establishes boyhood friendships as based on adventure and discovery - more about action to "soothe their troubles" rather than girlhood friendships which are based on "long chats and gossip, suppositions about life."
· Through the effective use of various literary elements and techniques, William Maxwell... and Frank Conroy... convey this idea about boyhood friendships. (introductory paragraph)
· "Tobey and Frank... were compatible because they were separate from the rest of the world." (concluding paragraph)
The writer clearly establishes a comparative stance about the controlling idea. The writer demonstrates the ability to formulate and maintain a controlling idea throughout the paper.
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