Peer Review Expository Essay

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Objective

SWBAT work with peers to evaluate each other's writing.

Big Idea

This Exposition stuff is hard; good thing students have friends to help them out!

Guiding Question

5 minutes

This Guiding Question is getting them to begin thinking about the benefit of having several peers around you. At the beginning of the year, we did a community-building activity about the power of communities, and I really want them to see the connection as the move through the year--but no time is more important than during peer review sessions.

Peer Review Session

50 minutes

Before any peer review session, I try to model what it should look like in front of the class. I'll either use a sample from another class, or I'll ask for a volunteer from the current class. The first thing I do is reread the assignment. For this essay, it was the Embedded Assessment assignment from SpringBoard. I'll walk my students though each question of the Expository Peer Review sheet, thinking aloud as I go. It's important that they see me read it several times. First, I read it for understanding.  Next, I read it and add my suggestions. Lastly, I read the essay and my suggestions to make sure it all makes sense.

I always instruct students, upon completion of their responses, to have a conversation with each other about their writing. I've modeled how this should look, moving beyond the Expository Peer Review Sheet, and having an organic conversation about their style and asking and answering questions.

Next, for this particular assessment, I had the partner check off from the Expository Essay Outline to make sure that every element was included. Sometimes it's nice to have an extra set of eyes here.

When they have finished that conversation, I have them complete an Expository Rubric on their peer. This is where they can't hide behind their fluffy comments about how great their partner's essay is. They have to score them.