Family Stories

(In-Schools Program)

Sep 16,2011, 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM @ James Lick Middle School
We are really excited about working with you in our writing room! Since it is the beginning of the year, we wanted to do a writing assignment that would engage the students and help us get to know them better. For this assignment, students will be writing personal essays that accompany their family tree projects. They can chose from the following prompts: 1) Write a personal essay about a family story (ex. humorous, sad, scary, embarrassing, etc.) 2) Write a personal essay about an experience you personally had 3) Write a personal essay about how a member(s) of your family came to the United States (explain who/what/when/where/why/how?). We are focusing on incorporating figurative language and imagery in our writing and these strategies should be apparent in the students’ essays.

While in the writing center for the first time, students will share their first drafts of these stories in small groups to get peer feedback and support from the tutors. We would like the tutors to facilitate the share-out and peer feedback and then use their own expertise to provide students with ideas and suggestions for improvement. The writing should focus on plot development, figurative language and vivid imagery and may include dialogue, suspense and any other literary techniques. After our initial tutoring session, students will revise their essays, then they will meet individually with tutors in the writing room to get more specific feedback on proper grammar, spelling, punctuation and structure for their final essay to be published.

For grading purposes, we have provided a state-generated narrative writing rubric. We will use this rubric to assess students’ writing in detail.

We look forward to your support and thank you in advance for working with our students.


Ms. Tobi Hacker
Ms. Arianne Babcock
Teachers, 7th grade English Language Arts

Grade: 7

1220 Noe Street San Francisco, CA 94114