Essay Writing RubricsWhen planning a unit of writing instruction, it is best to focus on a few skills. Model these skills for the students and give them practice activities to develop these skills, then assess their writing based on their mastery of those skills. In other words, if you don't teach students comma rules, then don't assess them on their ability to use commas. Such a practice is both unfair for the students and complicates the evaluation process for the teacher.
- Structure - if the students uses topics sentences or adheres to an organizational pattern that you are requiring.
- Formatting - I require my 7th and 8th grade students to use most of the MLA style conventions. I don't accept 20 point cursive fonts, pictures, or glitter. This will prepare them for future essay writing.
- Object of Instruction - This will vary: if I am teaching narrative writing, I usually teach and require climaxes or turning points in students' stories. I also require attention catchers and closing statements.