Mastering the Informational Essay Through Personalization

A self-paced acquisition of writing skills through practice sessions where students set goals for mastery.

By Mary Cabral and Keith Swist (Kickemuit Middle School – ELA)

The Strategy

After students receive their first graded essay of the year back, they identify their largest area of need using the Essay Goal Sheet. Students then set personal goals on the sheet, working on that area first on the following essays, tracking their own progress, and moving on to another goal after that one has been reached.  

Technologies Used

Google Classroom, Google Docs


First, score a full-essay, then see the attached Informational Essay Goal Sheet here. This progress monitoring strategy could used for any subject. Any skill can be tracked and improved. The goal sheet can easily be modified for any skill or subject area.    


This strategy helped scaffold the writing process, breaking it into smaller pieces for students to master rather than having to focus on the entire essay process all at once.


See the strategy in action below. Direct link to video here.

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