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Knowledge and Skills Statement

Composition: listening, speaking, reading, writing, and thinking using multiple texts--genres. The student uses genre characteristics and craft to compose multiple texts that are meaningful.

Task students with composing their own correspondence, including written or digital communication exchanged between two or more people in the form of a letter, email, or fax. For example, students can respond to a newspaper article or an online blog with their opinions.

Further Explanation

This SE requires students to write to audiences outside of those they are familiar with and for purposes that require a consideration of tone. The method of correspondence should correlate with the purpose of the communication and could include a business or a friendly letter, a blog post, or an email. Writing is expected to be organized and coherent and include a greeting, a body, and a closing.

Students at this grade level should begin writing correspondence to audiences outside of those that are familiar and for purposes that require consideration of tone. For example, students at this grade could write to elected officials, city leaders, or school administrators and should know how to establish a more formal tone than they would use in an informal note to a friend. Student writing should be organized and coherent and include a greeting, a body, and a closing.
any written or digital communication exchanged between two or more people in the form of a letter or e-mail


1. VanDerHeide, J., Juzwik, M. M. (2018). Argument as conservation: Students responding through writing to significant conversations across time and place. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 62(1), 67–77. doi:10.1002/jaal.754

Summary: In this article, the author presents an instructional model that reconnects to the why of writing. The model of information reasoning requires students to learn how to make a claim, provide supporting evidence of that claim, and create additional examples of the claim through the use of analogies and stories. In this study, students were asked to write a letter in response to an ongoing conversation that was of particular importance to them. Personal experience helps to develop the students' ability to advocate for a position through writing. The approach requires scaffolding on argumentative writing instruction. This study includes multiple templates to guide the writing of the responses. This approach fosters the opportunity for students to participate in conversations that have a historical background. In doing so, students engage in topics of debate that have continued over time and in various spaces. Students are invited to participate in these discussions through their writing positions as arguing for or against a position. 

2. Klein, P. D., & Rose, M. A. (2010). Teaching argument and explanation to prepare junior students for writing to learn. Reading Research Quarterly, 45(4), 433–461. Retrieved from

Summary: In this study, Klein and Rose examine how students respond to various writing tasks and assignments. The teachers used the process writing approach, which included creating an outline, drafts, and a final paper. The revision and edit process lends itself to implementing teacher and peer oral and written feedback. The study reveals that there are specific as well as varied means to teach the writing process to students. Students must use prior knowledge and have access to relevant external sources (i.e. internet).