Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

2011 MCAS
Grade 4 English Language Arts Composition
Topic/Idea Development - Score Point 6

This composition is clearly focused and maintains a rhythm of excitement that is carefully ordered from beginning to end. The writer provides a personal statement at the end of the first paragraph and carefully weaves it throughout the composition through both internal and external dialogue. Effective uses of language such as “It was just the paper and I, both in our corners…” and “I tackled the test like a linebacker sacking the quarterback…” help to provide the reader with vivid images. The addition of precise word usage such as “honorable document,” “arch-enemy,” and “specialized in math” help to create an engaging, rich quality of language. Effective repetition is used to display the student’s inability to contain determination and genuine excitement. Sentences such as “I knew I had, I just knew!”, “I skyrocketed into the air!”, and “I was the king of the world!” show a well-crafted language style. A hopeful wish for the success of other students wraps up the composition, but the energy continues to the final two words: “Math rocks!” The importance of this teacher in this student’s life is evident throughout, and the memories come alive for the reader in this richly developed composition.
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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education