Stage C
Students CAN Edit their NG Writing Zone Paragraphs

One of the most wished for improvements to READ 180 Next Generation is the ability for students to go back and edit their Writing Zone paragraphs.  This year, I realized there is an easy way students can edit and revise them through their school emails, or with its recent improvements, Google Classroom.

For the past several years, I have saved students' Writing Zone paragraphs to show their progress in writing.  I use this progress as my NJ Student Growth Objective (SGO).  Students are taught to respond to their WZ prompts with textual evidence from the RZ passages, citing the paragraph where they found the evidence and writing a 2-part conclusion that explains and extends.  Starting at the beginning of the year, I sit with students when they reach the Writing Zone to teach them my preferred format.  If students are missing major components, they edit and revise the paragraphs, previously in writing.

However, this year, with the addition of student school email accounts, and most recently, Google Classroom's NEWEST addition: Individual Assignments, editing and revising their paragraphs is easier for students.  



AND, with the use of a continuous Writing Zone Google Doc, it is also easy and quick for teachers!  This year, I started to copy/paste students' completed Writing Zone paragraphs into a continuous Google Doc, keeping all Writing Zone compositions in one ongoing document.  My thought was that it would make comparing students' progress easier if they were all in one doc, and I did not have to look back in SAM, or print and file hard copies in yet another binder.  And easier is exactly what this is.

From compiling all students' Writing Zones into a Google Doc, which is a simple copy/paste from  the students' Respond and Write Portfolio submissions in  SAM, I can now email each student via their school email - or, with the recent assignment upgrade, send them via the new Google Classroom feature of assigning to individual students.


A prewritten, editable list of what needs to be revised or edited is added to the student's email or Google Classroom assignment.  Students have a week to make the corrections.  All this takes very little time to complete, once it's set up. 


Is this something you might consider adding to your READ 180 Classroom?  I'd love to hear your feedback!


Stage C READ 180 Educator

January 1, 2014

It has been a while since I have updated my profile, so long that I had to search to find the edit button! I continue to teach three READ 180 classes this school year, which I absolutely love, after one-year of teaching 2 READ 180/English 1 blocks and one ICS English 1. The 2013-2014 school year is my 7th year teaching READ 180/English 1, and my 20th year as a SPED teacher.  

Oakcrest High School is one of three regional high schools in southern South Jersey. At Oakcrest, I teach a combined RC English 1/READ 180 90 minute course (10 credits) to freshmen special education students whose skills range from being on grade level to 5 or 6 years behind grade level. My district mainly uses the READ 180 curriculum for SPED freshmen who are not ready for the gen ed curriculum, either because of learning or moderate behavioral disabilities. About half of my students move from the RC placement to an ICS placement for English in their sophomore year.

I have enjoyed writing the Stage C READ 180 Blog for the past two years, sharing my classroom with the READ 180 Community Members. Check out all my blogs HERE. In my blog, I try to respond to questions I see in the Community Message Boards, as well as questions from READ 180 Teachers, and things I have tried and found successful in my own READ 180 classrooms. In my blog, I also try to focus on the Common Core and Next Generation Assessment skills our students will need, sharing tips and enhancements I have made in my classes to help prepare my SPED students. Last summer, I was also invited to serve on the Scholastic READ 180 Advisory Board in NYC, and learned about some of the amazing things Scholastic is implementing to help introduce our students to the Common Core and Next Gen. Assessments, which were the topic of my December 2013 blog: Stretch 2 Supports Common Core Reading & Writing.

During the last READ 180 National Summer Institute in New Orleans during July 2012, I presented one of my class best practices to many of the READ 180 teachedrs attending the conference. You can find information and resources from that presentation in my blog HERE. The folder system outlined my "Success" Blog is easy to set up and easy for students to use and teachers to implement.

CryUnfortunately, I will be unable to attend the upcoming 2014 NSI in Florida as the new dates conflict with my annual family vacation in Duck, NC. Cry

Besides the enhanced focus on the Common Core, this year my students have been blogging about their books with two other READ 180 classes. Students have enjoyed blogging and, although we had to take a break the last few weeks, they are looking forward to picking it back up and restart their blogging this month.

  • Thank you for all of your wonderful ideas. You are inspirational!The sample grade form is definitely something I will use. How often do you expect students to finish a segment? What do you do if a segment is not completed during that time? Grading for report cards is something that I find frustrating and I am excited to try this form.I love the idea of using google classroom/google docs for rewrites. Thank you again

    Thank you for your kind words and support! For my high school students, I expect those in Level 2 to complete 1 every 3 weeks (13-15 days), and Level 3-4 to complete 1 every 4 weeks (18-20 days). These may be a bit longer than the norm because I require students to give me a six-seven sentence paragraph with textual evidence (or video evidence especially for levels 1&2) for each Support 1 and Support 2 and a 2 part conclusion that explains (restated/connects the topic sentence) and extends the conclusion beyond the student to other students/other people or situations throughout the world. For my indecisive writers this is a great opportunity to learn how to push through and write. (We all have those students who just stare at their paper without ever getting anything written down.)As for grading, I Use each WZ and SZ as a test grade. If students are missing key information in their WZ paragraphs, then they get it back to rewrite as noted in my blog. If they have most and have lost only a few points, I do not require a rewrite (usually a WZ 85% and above). The object is to have them get it right within the WZ. Too many rewrites will discourage them. For most, one or two rewrites is all they need to convince them to do it right the first time. I also encourage students to let me know if they need help and find most will discover they can do it on their own after a couple of 1:1 sessions.Also within my gradebook READ 180 category, I use the Grading Report's Comprehension, vocabulary, word, and Spelling grades for each MP. If students complete more segments than expected, I tell them I will replace lower grade segments with the higher grade segment. For my high school students, I hold them accountable and if anyone earns a zero, that is their grade for missing segments (unless there are extenuating circumstances). Please let me know how this works for you. Debbie Dlee@gehrhsd.net


    I like your Sample Grade Form and the use of Google Docs for editing! You have found some creative and technology-based ways to facilitate necessary editing in the writing process!

    Thank you!

    WOW! Awesome information shared! Much food for thought....thank you!

    Thank YOU!