Video:  Detailed Expository Lesson Plans: Week One Day 5   4 Easy Steps to Expository that your Students will Easily Remember!

Video: Detailed Expository Lesson Plans: Week One Day 5 4 Easy Steps to Expository that your Students will Easily Remember!

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1 2 3 4.... gets a good score!
Don't make expository harder than it has to be!

Read this post to find out why some of your students might be getting lower scores on expository. Please share or tag your writing teacher friends.

Every single year, about 75% of the students in fourth grade get zeroes, ones, and twos from each reader. Last year alone, 24,000 students got two zeroes. probably because they had no idea what the word invention meant. That means that they need to be reminded to look up words in the dictionary they do not understand and that you actually have to teach science and social studies at your school.

If your students follow this plan below for their rough draft and final copy, they will be precisely following every single step in the "Be sure to" section of the prompt page

1. Clearly State your idea
W - WHAT is your idea that responds to the prompt? That becomes your central idea, controlling idea, thesis, or position statement.
It is usually best to place this statement in the introduction, but it doesn't necessarily have to be there as long as it is somewhere in the essay.

2. Organize your essay
W - WHY did you choose this for your idea? This will be your reason that becomes the topic sentence for the body, known as the main idea in reading. Keep in mind that for every reason that you give, you're going to have to explain, which is addressed in step three. For that reason, two reasons are always better than three, and one reason is always better than two. Since you only have 26 lines, this allows you more space to develop each reason well.

3. Develop your ideas in detail
E - EXPLAIN and EXPLODE one or two EXAMPLES to support your idea and reason. If you choose more than one example, make sure they relate to each other, not just the prompt or your idea. Effective transitions are needed between the introduction, body, and conclusion, not just: "Let me tell you my reasons, my first reason, my second reason or in conclusion". All students can use personal examples about themselves as long as they are using them as anecdotes to explain their reasons, not simply just telling stories. Writing a story about the prompt gets you a one from each reader for being written in the wrong purpose.

4. Choose your words carefully
Use correct spelling, capitalization, punctuation, grammar, and sentences.
E - ENDING and ER. Your paper must have an ending in order to qualify for a three or a four from each reader. Conclusions that rephrase or reflect are much better than those that just repeat or restate what has already been written. The last step will be taking your paper to the ER... The emergency room of editing and revising in class, group, & partner settings. Letting your kids edit and revise their own paper in the first semester usually results in very little improvement of quantity or quality. they can't seem to find their own mistakes, but give them someone else's paper, and they will tear it to shreds!

Any program that tells you that you only need a couple of sentences to support each reason is going to result in your students just getting ones and twos for being too vague and not developing enough.

Starting your essay by asking a question about the prompt or using details from the read and think section is very formulaic and will often affect the overall score. There is nothing wrong with asking the reader a question at the beginning as long as it is a question about your idea and not always one about the topic.

Telling your students that they have to state the reasons in the introduction and in the conclusion is repetitious and also formulaic resulting in a lower score for both reasons.

Your students are allowed to write in first person, second person, or third person without it affecting the score as long as they are explaining. All you have to do is look at the scoring guides to see that students are getting threes and fours even though they are using pronouns like I, me, we, and us.

In addition to giving personal examples to explain, your students may also use examples that are hypothetical or based on current and or historical events, experiences, situations or people. This includes songs, books, shows or movies. They can even use analytical responses if they are more mature writers.

You are not allowed to give a lower grade for students who forget to indent a specific number of times. There can be no indentions at all, and your students can still get a three or a four because the graders are taught to look at the essay as a rough draft not a final copy. Yes, the TEKS talk about the importance of teaching indenting and paragraphs, but there is no mention of indenting in the scoring guides.

You are allowed to share your personal feelings, emotions, thoughts, and opinions as you write. That is part of your voice and mentioned in the scoring guides in the development section on how to get a four. The reader wants to know your point of view!

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