Ideas / Content
The heart of the message, the content of the piece, the main theme, together with the details that enrich and develop that theme.
The writer has not defined the topic in a meaningful, personal way.
Information is limited or unclear; length is not adequate to fully involve the reader.
the topic is fairly broad; however you can see where the writer is headed.
The writer seems to be drawing on knowledge or experience, but has difficulty going from general observations to specifics.
The topic has been narrowed down to include one significant event.
Details within the writing enhance the story. Observations are personal and specific.
The topic is narrow nad manageable.
Relevant, telling, quality details give the reader important information that goes beyond the obvious or predictable.
The writer has displayed an understanding of life and a knack for picking out what is significant.
Is the intended structure of a piece of writing, the thread of central meaning the logical and sometimes intriguing pattern of ideas.
Writing is missing either an introduction that propels the reader forward or a conclusion to wrap things up.
Pacing feels awkward, rushed in some areas or too slow in others.
Organization makes it hard for the reader to get a grip on the main point or storyline.
Writing includes both an introduction and conclusion.
Pacing is fairly well controlled, including facts/events that propel the reader forward in the writing.
The main idea is defined.
Writing includes an interesting introduction that creates interest within the writing. Conclusion is well defined and clarifies the meaning of the story for the reader. Pacing is well controlled, giving enough information to clarify the storyline. Main idea is well-defined.
Writing includes an interesting, original method for introducing the story. Conclusion is satisfying and leaves the reader with a sense of closure.
Details and information "fit" where they are placed and are very effective in creating a sense of flow to the writing.
The heart and soul, the magic, the wit along with the feeling and conviction of the individual writer coming out through the words.
The writing is risk-free.
The development of the topic is too limited, making it difficult distinguish a point of view.
Writing is stiff and impersonal.
Writing shows that thought was given to the audience.
The point of view of the writer is somewhat clear.
Writing is safe with some bright moments of the writer's language.
The writer takes a risk and shows who he/she is throughout the writing.
Writing is personal and engaging.
the writer's ideas and point of view is easily understandable.
The reader feels a strong interaction with the writer, sensing the writer behind the words.
The writing illustrates a uniquely, honest approach towards the topic that adds interest and believability to its message.
The use of rich, colorful, precise language that moves and enlightens the reader.
The writer demonstrates a limited vocabulary or has not searched for words to convey specific meaning.
Some words are used incorrectly.
Writer uses particular words repeatedly throughout the piece.
The language is functional with one or two fine moments. Familiar words and phrases communicate adequately the message of the writing. Some repetition of words.
Words and phrases begin to capture the reader's attention. Writer attempts to use colorful language that shows a willingness to stretch and grow. Word choice adds energy and depth to the meaning of the piece.
Words choice is specific and accurate. Words and phrases catch the reader's eye and linger in the reader's mind. The writer has taken care to put just the right word or phrase in just the right spot.
The rhythm and flow of the language, the sound of word patterns, the way in which the writing plays to the ear -- not just the eye.
The text does not contain a flow to the words that invites expressive oral reading.
Many sentences begin the same way.
Overuse of connectives (and, but, because, and so, etc.) creates a jumble of language.
Parts of the text invite expressive oral reading.
Sentence beginnings vary throughout the piece. Sentences connect without the overuse of connectives.
Text hums along with a steady beat, making oral reading easy. Sentences build on one another, illustrating the creative use of connectives.
Writing has an easy flow, rhythm and cadence that invites expressive oral reading. Sentences are constructed in a way that underscores and enhances meaning. Sentences vary in length and structure.
Are the mechanics correct in the piece -- spelling, grammar and usage, paragraphing, use of capitals, and punctuation?
Spelling errors are frequent (more than 8). Errors in grammar or usage are very noticeable, frequent, and affect meaning.
Punctuation is often missing or incorrect. Paper looks as if it has not been proofread.
Spelling errors are somewhat frequent (4-8). Writing contains several errors in grammar or usage, but are not serious enough to affect meaning. Occasional punctuation errors occur in the piece.
Minimal errors spelling occur in the piece (2-4).
Writing contains minimal errors in grammar and/or usage. Punctuation is correct. The writer displays an adequate understanding of standard writing conventions.
Spelling is generally correct, even on difficult words. Punctuation is accurate, even creative, adding expression to the piece. The writer displays a good grasp of standard writing conventions.