Teachers in a k-12 program were wondering about how to be more effective in teaching students how to write. Teachers from grades 2-12 developed a strategy, in consultation with a reading and writing specialist, that would be implemented across all divisions using common language and expectations.
Please note: This strategy was not created by these teachers. Rather, teachers developed an existing strategy in such a way that each teaching team made it their own (graphic organizer/language) and agreed to use it for all verbal and written responses.
Aside: Implementation of all strategies followed the I do/We do/You do Voodoo with pre and post activity reminders. Each student's ability to implement the strategy independently was tracked. LA comments were centered around student's abilities rather than subjective evaluations about how a student may or may not have interacted with, and responded to, various classroom activities.
The Hockey Drafting Analogy...
How does it work?
A student is directly taught how to implement the strategy. The following example is used:
Q: What strategy allows students to write full sentence responses without grammatical, punctuation or spelling errors?
A: QAR strategy
R: QAR strategy allows students to write full sentence responses without grammatical, punctuation or spelling errors.
Here is another example...
Q: Did you go to Hong Kong for Christmas?
R: No, I did not go to Hong Kong for Christmas.
From a Soc 30 diploma exam...
Q: Should a nation take action against another nation that violates human rights?
R: Yes, I believe a nation should take action against another nation that violates human rights.
Another one from 1994 (the new style)...
Q: To what extent do nations benefit from increased global cooperation?
A: Various - consult frequency adverbs or descriptive adverbs
R: Nations ______(f)_____ benefit ______(d)_____ from increased global cooperation.
Nations always benefit greatly from increased global cooperation.
Nations sometimes benefit marginally from global cooperation.
Nations never never benefit profitably from global cooperation.
So there's more???
Yes there is! This strategy, although designed for sentence responses, is also highly affective for topic sentences in paragraphs and for controlling ideas in essays. It's like a strategy with a plus!
QAR plus is a strategy that helps students make compound sentences. These sentences will include one detail.
Q: How do you get to school?
R: I take the bus to get to school.
Ask for a +...
Q: How do you get to school?
A: Walk and Bus
R: I walk to the bus stop and take the bus to get to school.
Check out the template...
This strategy incorporates the basics of QAR with the idea of a grocery list of ideas separated by a comma.
Q: What are some qualities that are prerequisites of all good leaders?
A: Knowledge/interpersonal skills/technical skills
R: Knowledge, interpersonal skills and technical skills are some qualities that are prerequisites of all good leaders.
This is an excellent strategy to encourage ESL students to use full-sentence responses during oral activities. To begin:
1. Teach the strategy using the I do, we do, you do voodoo.
2. Put question up on the board so students can read the endings of their responses
3. Be sure to ask the same question a number of times so students get the cadence and sequence correct
4. As students improve listening skills, only display more difficult questions.
- Are you good at math?
- What is you favorite class in school?
- What is your favorite color?
- If I gave you a million patacas, what would you buy?