Writing Portfolio and Free Writes

I was so impressed by the Free Writes my 7th graders were able to produce by the end of last year. They had never had Spanish before, and I was really astounded by the words and phrases they picked up just from hearing them in the stories.

Generally, at the end of a 5-day unit, my students will have 10 minutes to write. They can write anything they want, using the target vocabulary, but often they will have an illustrated (student-created) storyboard to get their ideas flowing. I have this Free-Write Rules poster in my classroom as a guideline (thanks, Ben Slavic) and students have the free-write tips on page 4 of the Interactive Notebook.

This year I’m going to try some new writing activities, such as the 1-3-10 Writing Activity by Martina Bex. The activity is great AND it includes all-level rubrics for ACTFL proficiency targets. What other strategies have you all used as writing practice or writing assessments?

My students will collect and track their writing in the back of their Interactive Notebook. We will section-off the last quarter of the notebook for their Writing Portfolio. Every time they write, they will include the date, title, number of words, minutes and WPM in their chart. They will add their WPM to the scatterplot so they can get a visual representation of their growth. I’m pretty sure I got all these ideas from Ben Slavic’s blog.

Screen Shot 2014-07-31 at 3.23.03 AM

Below the scatter plot is Martina Bex’s ACTFL Level of Proficiency rubric. (I have also used Ben Slavic’s Free Write Rubric) Do you think his rubric also aligns with the ACTFL levels of proficiency and Standards-Based-Grades? I’m kind of confused about the relationship between Standards-Based-Grades and Proficiency Levels.

Anyways, I want to find a system for students to self-assess their proficiency. I was thinking every 3rd writing they will give themselves a proficiency score and then I will grade it and tell them if I agree with their assessment or not.

I can’t wait to share with you all some of the hilarious stories my students write this year!

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