At this time of the summer, it might be a bit difficult to think about the beginning of the school year. But I've already started! Actually, my classroom has been gutted for the purpose of windows that don't exchange air with the outdoors during our frigid winters as well as wall insulation and a new HVAC system--and I say that quite literally--so perhaps this is why I'm thinking early? I've included some recent pictures for your perusal! (I am so grateful, though for the updates!)
The beginning of the school year brings myriad new opportunities--both for students and instructors. One of the greatest opportunities I have as an introductory is to get to know an entirely new group of students. As an English instructor, it's very important to me that I get to know my students' views on writing. I would like to have students engage in some type of writing on a daily basis. Yet as an instructor, I know there may inhibiting factors for students.
This week's FREEBIEis a beginning-of-year writing survey. (I've included it both in PDF (ready to use) and in PPT (questions editable).)
I have students respond to these questions in class--with chill music playing in the background--sometime during the first two weeks of school. I may use this survey during some "gap" time and have students finish at home. I may choose to have students respond in a timed scenario--depending on the class. Regardless, the information provided by students allows me to look at student writing first-hand as well as to open the doors of communication:
for overall class discussions about writing.
for introducing individual student conversations about writing.
for sharing my own views on writing.
I hope you find this survey as valuable as I have. How have you assessed student writing skills at the beginning of a term? What suggestions do you have that we might consider this year?