Examples of Writing Processes:

from: http://ttms.org/PDFs/06%20Writing%20Across%20the%20Curriculum%20v001%20(Full).pdf

Traditional Process:

Gardner and Johnson (1997) describe the stages of the writing process:
"Writing is a fluid process created by writers as they work. Accomplished writers move back and forth between the stages of the process, both consciously and unconsciously. Young writers, however, benefit from the structure and security of following the writing process in their writing.
    • Prewriting. Students generate ideas for writing: brainstorming; reading literature; creating life maps, webs, and story charts; developing word banks; deciding on form, audience, voice, and purpose as well as through teacher motivation.
    • Rough Draft. Students get their ideas on paper. They write without concern for conventions. Written work does not have to be neat; it is a 'sloppy copy.'
    • Reread. Students proof their own work by reading aloud and reading for sensibility.
    • Share with a Peer Revisor. Students share and make suggestions for improvement: asking who, what, when, where, why, and how questions about parts of the story the peer does not understand; looking for better words; and talking about how to make the work better.
    • Revise. Improve what the narrative says and how it says it: write additions, imagery, and details. Take out unnecessary work. Use peer suggestions to improve. Clarify.
    • Editing. Work together on editing for mechanics and spelling. Make sure the work is 'goof proof.'
    • Final Draft. Students produce their final copy to discuss with the teacher and write a final draft.
    • Publishing. Students publish their written pieces: sending their work to publishers; reading their finished story aloud, making books. This is a time to celebrate!
In actuality, the writing process is not a highly organized linear process, but rather a continual movement between the different steps of the writing model."
from: http://www.ncrel.org/sdrs/areas/issues/methods/instrctn/in5lk11-1.htm

Six Traits:

Lesson Ideas for the Traits:

Each link below will take you to a page that will give you ideas for teaching that particular trait.

Six Trait Analytic Writing Model Handbook for Students
from: http://www.kimskorner4teachertalk.com/writing/sixtrait/menu.htm

Writing Fix's Six Traits Resources
Six Traits Posters to use in your classroom
Mike's "6 Traits" Delicious Links
Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory Resources
Six Traits Writing Assessment Page (Elementary Level)


Prompts to use for each of the components*

ROLE: What do I know about this role? What special language might a person in this role use?

AUDIENCE: What do I know about this audience? What information does this audience need to know? What voice would be most appropriate for this audience?

FORMAT: What do I know about this format? How are ideas typically organized for this format (compare/contrast, chronological order, cause and effect, deductive logic, point-by-point analysis)? Click here for examples of formats.

TOPIC: What do I know about this topic? What details should I provide for my audience? What questions should I answer for my audience? Where can I go to find more information if I need it (encyclopedias, periodicals, newspapers, Internet, an expert in the field, library,reference manuals)?

STRONG VERB: What purpose for my writing does this verb suggest? To inform or explain? To persuade? To describe? To tell a story? To create a new way of seeing things? What key words will make my purpose clear? Click here for examples of strong verbs .

*All materials were taken directly from Writing to Prompts in the Trait-Based Classroom: Content Areas. Scholastic Teaching Resources. Pages 6-8, 15-16.

Why Use RAFTS Prompts?

In his book Writing to Learn, William Zinsser explains, “Writing across the curriculum isn’t just a method of getting students to write who are afraid of writing. It is also a method of getting students to learn what they were afraid of learning.” Whether they are investigating life forms at the deepest depths of the ocean, designing a new playground scheme, or observing the mating habits of the New Zealand kiwi, students need to write it all down to make sense of what they find out through questioning and research. . . . We write to make sense of our world; we write to understand how things work; we write to figure things out. . . . . RAFTS prompts help students not only become better writers but to become better thinkers.

RAFTS prompts go hand-in-hand with the 6 traits of writing. . . . Role and Audience help students decide on the voice and word choice; Format helps students with the organization of the writing; Topic helps students zero in on the ideas of writing; and Strong Verbs direct students to the writing purposeand, from there, help them to write clearly using all the traits. . . . Whether it’s a math problem to be solved, a social studies research project, or a science laboratory report, the traits of writing help students express their ideas clearly. (Taken directly from Writing to Prompts in the Trait-Based Classroom: Content Areas. Scholastic Teaching Resources. Pages 6-8, 15-16.)

According to the website of the Saskatoon Public Schools in Saskatchewan, Canada (http://olc.spsd.sk.ca/DE/PD/instr/strats/raft/), “almost all RAFTs writing assignments are written from a viewpoint different from the student's, to another audience rather than the teacher, and in a form different from the ordinary theme. Therefore, students are encouraged to use creative thinking and response as they connect their imagination to newly learned information. The purpose of RAFTs is to give students a fresh way to think about approaching their writing. It occupies a nice middle ground between standard, dry essays and free-for-all creative writing. RAFTs combines the best of both. It also can be the way to bring together students' understanding of main ideas, organization, elaboration, and coherence...in other words, the criteria by which compositions are most commonly judged. This strategy is great for differentiation; teachers (and students) can develop any number of possible RAFTs based on the same text that can be adjusted for skill level and rigor.”

Plus, because of their emphasis on personalization and individuality, RAFTS are difficult to plagiarize!