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Cherise Storlie-Kristoffersen


Cherise Storlie-Kristoffersen

Grandma Frances

Cookbooks can tell the story of her life.
It may be by the dated recipes that signify an important event -
my 10th birthday or Mom and Dad’s 25th Anniversary.
It may also be by the butter that spattered on the page
as the mixer ran and left its permanent mark.

The mark is oily, smooth, silky
and catches my eye as I look at the cookbook
page it leads me to the pineapple bar recipe
where I see the meringue with the yellow bubbles of sugar perspiring on top.
And then I taste the brownies with the hand shucked black walnuts.


The walnuts are picked over by Grandpa and Grandma
as they sat around the kitchen table during the winter months.
Enjoying one another’s conversation
and the familiarity after nearly fifty years of marriage.

They were united in marriage at the rural parsonage
on February 8th in a double wedding with Art and Grandma’s sister Amelia.
Each couple standing up for the other on that frigid blustery day.

That day was also Grandpa’s birthday and the birthday of Randy, a great nephew.
This meant a tradition of celebrating life together with food and fellowship.
Ornate cakes creatively decorated would grace the table with creamy nut frosting and
the cooked chocolate icing that requires patience in order to be successful


Success was apparent -
The aroma welcomed you into the twelve o’clock dinner made from scratch day after day.
The manner in which Grandma and Grandpa
did the song and dance of marriage -
you could see it in their eyes and feel it in their rhythm.

The rhythm of the seasons and the land lived within their bones.
There was a time to plant, a time to harvest
and they knew this intuitively just as we breathe.
Planting the zinnia seeds that were carefully stored
in a Folgers coffee can from the previous year
to edge the vegetable garden.
Cutting the seed potatoes and planting the eyes.
The sad day when Grandpa dug up
the tired strawberry patch and planted asparagus.

The asparagus which has been bountiful after Grandpa passed on
is now being enjoyed by his great grandson.
Niclas has harvested and eaten an abundance of asparagus
and if Grandpa Leonard could see him a wide grin would be spread across his face
and his eyes would have lit up under those dark glasses.


Those dark glasses allowed my brother to cheat
while he played 500 around the kitchen table.
I was watching them only wishing I was old enough to play.
There were always Bugles at each corner and 7Up to drink.

Drinking Tang was something I only did at Grandma’s house
and it was often reserved for breakfast.
Grandma would take homemade buns out of the freezer
and the knife would work its way through before being popped into the toaster
and then buttered and topped with homemade strawberry jam.


The jam recipe was scrawled out on an index card by Great Aunt Amelia
and every summer a team effort made the freezer jam
a reality for the upcoming year.
A tradition that mixed hard work
and enjoyment with a sweet purposeful ending.

Purpose. I think every move on the farm is done with purpose.
Grandma created food in her kitchen everyday with a purpose.
From rising early in the morning to make buns to hearty meals that ended with desert.
The food did not only nourish us it nourished our souls
and was an art form in which she expressed a certain beauty and grace.
An interactive art form that was a total sensory experience.

The sensory experience is triggered as I make the pineapple bars
that leave the sugar perspiration beading and I only hope -
that I can leave those around me with a bit of the warmth and love
that Grandma Frances gave me by opening her cookbook
and sharing her long life.


6 word memoirs

Sacrificed three weeks. Inspired. Worth it!

Help TC’s! Research in progress! Wikiwatch!


The Effects of Analytic Assessment on Writing Instruction

The purpose of this study is to explore how the development of literacy, specifically writing, is affected through the use of analytic trait scoring and an establishment and use of a common language (felles begrepsapparat) in the teaching of writing. For the purposes of this research study it is assumed that analytic trait scoring is defined as a type of scoring that uses several distinct criteria to evaluate student products and performances. In effect the writing sample is assessed several times, using the lens of separate criteria each time. Analytic-trait scoring contrasts with holistic scoring, whereby a single, overall impression about a piece of writing is assigned (Wiggins & McTighe, 2005).

The two analytic assessment tools that compliment one another and are worthy of further research are 6 +1 Trait Writing and the First Steps Writing Map of Development. The trait model known as 6 + 1 Writing Traits was created by researchers from the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory (NWREL) in Portland, Oregon. The work of Paul Diederich (1974) and Alan Purves (1992) were instrumental in guiding the development of the 6 + 1 Trait model. The model is grounded in experience and empirical research. The First Steps Writing Map of Development by STEPS Professional Development recognizes that there are seven phases each student progresses through to become an accomplished writer. The Writing Map of Development links assessment, teaching, and learning to view the whole child as a growing writer (Appendix 1). The First Steps materials are to support teachers to implement an approach that builds upon prior knowledge and facilitate the skills necessary for writing. This multidimensional approach looks at writing as a process and writing as genre, and acknowledges the importance of socio-cultural perspective to the teaching of writing (Annandale, et al., 2005).

The goals and objectives from “Kunnskapsløftet” for the most senior students during compulsory education carry an expectation that students are expected to read and write texts in a variety of forms in both Bokmål and Nynorsk: an article, a formal letter, a short story, poem, drama, and a skit. Reflect, interpret, and report back on their reading experiences. Identify and use in their writing the devices of humor, irony, comparisons, and symbols. Students should be able to express themselves in a varied and nuanced vocabulary in different types of texts in Bokmål and Nynorsk. Reflect and be critical of their writing and writing development with assistance of knowledge regarding the language and text (Pedlex Norsk Skoleinformajon, 2008). At this final stage of school there was clarity in the goals and objectives to develop the traits needed to be present in a quality piece of writing. The traits associated with being an accomplished writer as defined in the Writing Map of Development, 6 + 1 Traits, and researchers such as Paul Diederich (1974). In the goals for eighth to tenth graders there was a clear demand to develop students’ ideas, voice, word choice, and sentence fluency; however, these traits were not in the “lærerplan” prior to eighth grade. There are, of course, many teachers who are addressing all of these writing traits at earlier stages. However, is it possible to provide teachers with a framework and common language that would support teachers in addressing the seven writing traits from early on? In order to foster the development of proficient writers, teachers must scaffold (stillasbygg) learning so students gain control and confidence in their writing across the curriculum. Teachers must have professional development opportunities to develop these teaching techniques and bring theory and practice together.

First of all, the professional development will need to give the teachers the knowledge, understanding, and skill necessary to use analytic-trait scoring. Next, but just as important, professional development will need to serve as a laboratory for exploring and collaborating so teachers can experience analytic-trait assessment rather than simply learn about it (Tomlinson, 2008). Teachers must take ownership of the analytic trait scoring tools and see these tools as valuable resources for both the teacher and the student.

Henning Fjørdtoft (2009) writes, “Et mål med å drive skoleutvikling må derfor være å sette ord på det vi gjør, og bygge opp et felles begrepsapparat og en felles forståelse for vår egen praksis. Arbeidet med å skrive tydelige læringsmål, designe gode autentiske vurderings oppgaver og læringsfremmende vurderingskriterier må bygge på troen på at noen praksiser er bedre enn andre.” After using and researching a variety of tools, it is the combination of First Steps Writing Map of Development and the 6 + 1 Writing Traits that together empower teachers to differentiate learning to foster optimal growth in building confident writers by both observing and evaluating the child as a whole and assessing individual samples of writing.

These analytic trait tools use a common vocabulary to describe qualities of writing and phases of writing development that allows teachers and students to have a shared understanding of what is quality writing. This allows teachers to provide meaningful feedback to students, differentiate instruction to meet the needs of the learner, and guide the student toward becoming a reflective evaluator of his\her own writing. Barry Lane (1996) writes, “The key to assessment is the word itself. It comes from the Latin verb assidire: to sit beside. We are not ranking her. We are sitting beside a piece of writing and observing its qualities. We are finding a common language to talk about those qualities.”

Research Question
Would it make a difference in writing development and testing results to purposefully weave analytic-trait scoring as formative and summative assessment into writing instruction? In other words, can we document differences in writing performance between two groups of students–one group of teachers “teaching site” systematically taught how to use analytic-trait scoring using the 6 + 1 Trait Writing Model and the First Steps Writing Map of Development and supported in using this intervention with the whole class while the other group of teachers the “study site” participated in traditional writing process instruction with holistic scoring?

This experimental study on the impact of implementing the 6+1 Trait Writing model and the Writing Map of Development is designed to answer the following two research questions:

1. Following the implementation of the intervention – 6+1 Trait Writing Model and the Writing Map of Development, will the quality of writing produced by students in the “teaching site” be higher than that produced by students in the “study site”?

2. To what extent will teachers in the “teaching site” implement and embrace the strategies presented in the 6+1 Trait Writing model and the Writing Map of Development following a three-day in-service at the beginning of the 2010 school year with a monthly two hour workshop providing support, instruction, and collaboration.

These research questions reflect the underlying causal model that good teaching practices and assessment tools must be implemented through professional development that is provided in an ongoing and supportive manner to achieve measureable and meaningful change.

Definition of Terms
Analytic-trait scoring model, 6 + 1 Trait Writing: 6 +1 Trait Writing identifies seven key characteristics or traits of writing that are used across all genres of each student’s writing samples across the curriculum. The traits are identified as the following:

Ideas: Ideas make up the content of the piece of writing- the heart of the message.

Organization: Organization is the internal structure of the piece, the thread of meaning, the logical pattern of the ideas.

Voice: Is the soul of the piece – the personal stamp that the writer brings to it as his or her feelings and convictions come out through words.

Word Choice: Word choice is the specific vocabulary that is rich, colorful, and precise that the writer uses to convey meaning.

Sentence Fluency: Sentence fluency is the way the words and phrases flow throughout the text- the way writing plays to the ear, not just to the eye.

Conventions: Conventions are the mechanical correctness of the piece.

Presentation: Presentation focuses on the overall appearance of the work.

Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory, Portland, OR (2000)

Common Language: A common language or shared vocabulary (felles begrepsapparat) refers to using the same terms to discuss and work with information.

Framework: Frameworks are representations designed to assist thinking about complex processes or situations. (MacArthur, C.; Graham, S.; Fitzgerald, J. 2006)

Study Site: The teachers and classrooms where there is no intervention and teachers proceed “as normal.”

Teaching Site: The teachers and classroom where the intervention is taking place.

Overview of Study
School year 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 six classrooms in the Trondheim area will be selected to determine the effect of implementing 6 + 1 Trait Writing and placing students on the writing map of development to guide and scaffold writing instruction. These classrooms will represent a diverse student population from native and second-language Norwegian learners, a range of ethnicities, and learning abilities. Three classrooms will be randomly selected as “study sites”. At the “study site” a pre- and post-writing assessment will take place and the teachers will continue to instruct and assess without any interventions. In the “study site” classrooms there will be a quarterly observation and documentation of the current practice of teaching writing. The remaining three sites will become “teaching sites”– where teachers attend a three day in-service on 6+1 Trait Writing model and the Writing Map of Development and participate in monthly two hour workshops for instruction and collaboration.

The main data collection instruments will be an assessment of writing performance and teacher surveys. All students in the “teaching site” and the “study site” will submit four pieces of writing. One writing sample will be submitted at the start of the 2010 school year prior to the implementation of the intervention and the second writing sample in June of 2011. The third writing sample will be taken in September of 2011 with the final writing sample being submitted in June of 2012. To ensure reliability the writing samples will be assessed by the Northwest Regional Education Laboratory in Portland, Oregon. The teacher surveys will be administered before the in-service training, after the in-service training, after each workshop, and in June of 2012. While there are prior research studies on the effectiveness of 6 +1 Trait Writing the studies are limited in the amount of follow-up and guidance the “teaching site” teachers are provided and there are no known studies of the impact of implement 6 +1 Trait Writing and The Writing Map of Development.

“If efforts to improve schools and education are to be maximized, however, they must draw upon what is known about writing, its development, and effective instruction for all children. In addition, we must apply new analytical tools and research methods to explore further each of these areas and examine the results of our endeavors” (MacArthur, C.; Graham, S.; Fitzgerald, J. 2006). Bring theory and practice together with sustained meaningful professional development for teachers and a new generation of accomplished writers will emerge.

Prior Research and Literature Review
Annandale, K., Bindon, R., Broz, J., Handley, K., Johnston, A., Lockett, L., et al. (2005). First Steps - Writing Map of Development. Oxon, United Kingdom: Steps Professional Development in the United Kingdom.

This is a well researched map of development of writing from the Steps Professional Development team that is owned by Edith Cowan University on behalf of the Department of Education and Training in Western Australia. The map lays out seven key phases each with a global statement, key indicators, and the major teaching emphases which guides teachers in scaffolding learning for the child as whole.

Culham, R. (2005). 6 + 1 Traits of Writing - The complete Guide for the Primary Grades. New York, New York: Scholastic Inc.

This analytic trait assessment guide has been developed through years of research at the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory and uses seven traits to score a student’s writing strengths and weaknesses and provides a common language for both students and teachers in the primary grades.

Culham, R. (2003). 6 + 1 Traits of Writing - The Complete Guide Grades Three and Up. New York, New York: Scholastic Professional Books.

A continuation of the traits based theory and practice for grades three and above.

Diederich, P. (1974). Measuring Growth in English. Urbana, Illinois, United States of America: National Council of Teachers of English.

Diederich identified traits similar to those that are now used in 6+1 Traits and his research was instrumental to the researchers at the Northwest Regional Education Laboratory.

Fjørtoft, H. (2009). Effektiv Planlegging og Vurdering - Rubrikker og Andre Verktøy for Lærere. Bergen, Norway: Fagbokforlaget Vigmostad and Bjørke AS.

Fjørtoft explores the use of criterion -based scoring and uses backwards design plan effectively. This is one of the first books out in Norwegian addressing criterion based assessment.

Kozlow, M., & Bellamy, P. (2004). Experimental Study on the Impact of the 6 +1 Writing Trait Model on Student Achievement in Writing. Portland, Oregon, United States of America: Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory Center for Research, Evaluation, and Assessment.

This is an experimental study addressing what effect 6+1 Trait Writing two day workshop had on teachers implementation to students over the course of one school year.

MacArthur, C., Fitzgerald, J., & Graham, S. (2006). Handbook of Writing. New York, New York, United States of America: Guilford Publications Incorporated.

This is a compilation of research on the history of writing.

Pedlex Norsk Skoleinformajon. (2008). Kunnskapsløftet - Fag og læreplaner i grunnskolen. Oslo, Norway: 07 Gruppen As.

The Norwegian Curriculum Plan for Elementary and Middle School.

Wiggins, G., & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by Design. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Studies best practice in planning, teaching, and assessing looking at identifying the goal and then designing instruction from that goal - also know as backwards design.