What Is Six Traits Writing?
Apr 11, 2011
Evaluating the quality of student writing can be a challenge. In order to have a standardized tool for discussing strengths and weakness, many writing teachers employ a tool known as Six Traits Writing that focuses on the six aspects of writing that are considered most essential. While some teachers use a variation on this method, such as four traits or seven, the goal is to help students understand the main areas that contribute to strong writing.
Having strong and original ideas is central to strong writing. When considering this most general of the Six Traits, there are many questions you can ask. To evaluate the effectiveness of your ideas, ask yourself about the message of your essay or story. Do all of the ideas relate to the central theme? Are the ideas contained within the piece interesting and engaging for the intended audience?
A well-organized essay or story has a logical structure that the reader can follow with ease. Most writing should start with an introduction that establishes the main idea or plot. In an essay, this should be followed by development, including supporting evidence, then a summarizing conclusion. A short story should follow a natural arc, with conflict and tension building to a climax; this is followed by a denouement in which the conflict is resolved and the story resolves itself.
Voice is perhaps the most significant of the Six Traits for defining how one writer distinguishes him or herself from another writer. While it's necessary to have error-free, polished writing, your voice establishes the humanity and personality of the writer. A strong voice draws in the reader and gives a piece of writing its style.
Word choice, or diction, is the trait that refers to the quality and appropriateness of the language used in the essay. The words you use should be appropriate for your audience. Your diction should be varied and complex. This may mean using a thesaurus in order to broaden the scope of your language.
Of the Six Traits, conventions refers to the most fundamental aspects of writing. This includes grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization and paragraph structure. You want your writing to be as error-free as possible, though it may take several edits to reach perfection. Be sure you don't rely on your writing software's spelling and grammar check, as these tools are often unreliable.
Strong sentence fluency means well-paced and varied syntax. You should avoid run-on sentences and fragments while also including both short and long sentences. An essay in which all sentences are of the same length is monotonous. Also, pay attention to the rhythm of your sentences; this is best achieved by reading your work aloud.
Other Blog Posts You May Be Interested In
A question for parents: would you allow your children to play outside without keeping an eye on them? Many would likely say no. Well, the same mentality should be used when your kids use the Internet; in other words, kids should not be allowed to roam the vast world of the Internet unsupervised and without fully understanding its...
If you have a child in elementary, middle or high school, then you've likely heard plenty of stories about bullying. Even if your child is not the target of bullying, he or she could still be affected by it. As a parent, you'll certainly want to make your kids aware of this persistent and growing problem in schools across the...
Let's face it: moving from kindergarten to first grade can be an overwhelming experience; so can transitioning from elementary school to middle school, or middle school to high school. In many ways, kids can be totally unprepared for what to expect as they move from one grade level to the next. So how can parents help with this...
Is it too early to begin thinking about your child's future career? Whether you have a toddler, tween or teen, it's never too early to begin cultivating interests that might one day turn into a career. So what can you do to steer your child in what is hopefully the right direction?
Are you worried that your child will not be intellectually stimulated during the summer months? While the season should be a time for fun and relaxation, it certainly doesn't hurt to slip some learning in during summer break. So sure, hit the beaches and amusement parks...but consider the following suggestions for activities that are...