Reflection: Student Grouping "Slip or Trip" Group Microtheme Writing - Section 2: Independent Practice


I choose with some writing assignments to have the students complete the process in small groups in order to allow them to help one another build capacity and skill. This was the first time the students were being asked to write a microtheme of their own, so I wanted to provide them with a little extra support by allowing collaboration. It also allowed me good opportunity to provide feedback quickly to the students in order to help them continue improving. Overall, I end up grading far fewer pieces, and that provides me with the opportunity to give good formative feedback for students. When they get the feedback, the students will discuss it as a team to help ensure each of them really understands and can grow from it. 

As for how the students were grouped, that followed my standard grouping procedure. In this procedure, I label each student, based on their performance on the two most recent writing tasks, as low, low middle, high middle, and high. Once students are labeled, and they are NEVER made aware of this process, they are grouped together. I put my low students with my high middle and the low middle students with the high. I had found in past experience that I do not see much in the way of growth when low students are paired with the high students because, in that situation, the high students take over and do not share responsibility or rationale behind choices with the other student(s). Therefore, the low students get nearly nothing out of the process, and the high students get very little out of it. This process also allows room for students to move from one label to another as they work and grow. 

  How Did The Grouping Come About? Why In Groups?
  Student Grouping: How Did The Grouping Come About? Why In Groups?
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"Slip or Trip" Group Microtheme Writing

Unit 1: Argument Writing
Lesson 5 of 13

Objective: The students will work in groups of 3 to write a microtheme that establishes a claim and supports the claim with effective evidence.

Big Idea: We, the Student Jury, Using All the Evidence, Find Mrs. Volupides Guilty!

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