• writingA Guide to 6 +1 Writing

    This school year, the Grosse Pointe Schools will be using the 6 +1 method of writing. 6 +1 writing is “a method of looking at the main characteristics of writing and assessing them independent from one another.” There are six different ‘traits' used for developing and evaluating good writing. These ‘traits' are:

    1. Ideas: the main message, make up the content of the writing piece

    2. Organization: the structure of the piece of writing

    3. Voice: a writer's style – the writer's soul and feelings come through in the voice

    4. Word Choice: detailed, engaging and rich vocabulary to move the reader

    5. Sentence Fluency: the flow of the language and how well words fit together to build a larger piece of writing

    6. Conventions: grammar and mechanics

    +1. Presentation: how the final copy is shown or displayed to readers

    (Presentation was once part of conventions, but was separated for more accurate assessment.)

    Use of this 6 +1 method of writing allows both the writer and reader/teacher to focus on the specific areas of writing and grade accordingly, rather than give one overall score to a piece of writing. This allows writers to develop good writing based upon these ‘traits.' Using the 6 +1 method also allows for accurate and consistent assessment by both the reader and writer. Specific assessment based upon the ‘traits' allows writers of all ages and levels to build upon their skills and work toward improvement.

    Throughout the school year, students may only be graded on one or two of the ‘traits' in a given writing assignment in order to help develop the specific writing skill. At other times, students may be graded on all ‘traits.'

    (Information/specifics from 6 +1 Traits of Writing: The Complete Guide to Grades 3 and Up. By Ruth Culham)