Co-Created Rubrics

In grade 2, we use co-created rubrics to self-assess drafts of our writing and develop student agency.

Photo of Erik Ray
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Co-created rubrics are a great way to develop student agency. Before creating the rubric for our informative books, we critiqued an informative writing piece that demonstrated excellence. We asked ourselves, "What makes a great informational book?" Using these identifiers we created the rubric to self-assess our own informative books.

All of the criteria used to create the rubric was from the students. As the teacher, I was there to scaffold and help model what great feedback "looks" and "sounds" like (kind, specific, helpful). 

With a co-created rubric, students were eager to revise and edit their own work. The informative writing we used for critique was found on EL Education's Models of Excellence page.

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Photo of Zain Adams

Great idea!

Photo of Leslie Bogar

Erik, this is a great idea and one that not only engages students but gives them a challenge. I agree with Maria in regard to using different color pens for each draft or to edit their drafts. The editing process, marking up their first, second and possibly a third draft, will help them to see how they have progressed. They should keep all drafts while they work on their final. Again, this will help them to see progress and stay away from starting from scratch.

Photo of Maria Singman

Erik, I would love to connect with you! Our school is an EL Education partner school and we love using the Models of Excellence as our guide. I also think attaching an student writing example of how this rubric helped a student progress through each revision is a powerful tool for students. I've had students use different color pens through each draft so we can a visual progress bar for their work.

Photo of Andrew Galpern

Hi. I noticed something about the rubric that may be important to reconsider... the rubric focused on grammar in 4 items, 1 item on penmanship, 1 item on formatting, 1 item on author pride, and only a single item on content/style asking about details. This seems heavily weighted towards the mechanics, rather than creativity, accuracy, clear writing, sense of style, humor, tone, mood, word choice, etc. which some might argue is the center...the very reason we communicate something important to someone else. The mechanics support the whole. Just a thought. Thanks for sharing the design.

Photo of Sarah Napoliello

This is a great idea! I bet the students were more critical of their work knowing that they set the expectations.

Photo of Angie Sauer

I love student-created rubrics! I used them with high school students for defining the characteristics of the final product they were aiming for during a design thinking rubric. The student-created rubric really helped my students know what they were aiming for with their prototyping and feedback cycles. It was awesome! That also helped my students, many of whom have learning support, to be able to keep their goal in mind as they worked and learned.

Photo of Emma Scripps

Erik Ray - I love the EL model! Can you upload an example of a rubric you've used with your kiddos? Also - how did you tee this up in your classroom?

Photo of Erik Ray

Hi Emma! The picture of the rubric is the one the students and I co-created. We analyzed an EL Model of an informative writing piece to come up with the criteria for our own. Each student was provided a copy of the informative writing piece and we came up with the criteria as a whole class. Looking at the EL Model we asked ourselves.. "What makes a great informative book?"

Photo of John Faig

Students co-creating rubrics is very powerful. Not only does it enable them to understand their goals in child-friendly language, but it also enables each class to be a little personalized.

Photo of Jennifer Gaspar- Santos

I like this idea of co-creation. In Alan November's book "Who Owns the Learning?" Alan talks about how students need to be part of the process of learning --it can't be one way with teacher directed instruction. Great idea Ray!
link to his book in case you're interested:

Photo of Alysha English

Erik Ray Hi friend...Happy Friday! We are seriously missing Vista already! Thanks for your contribution...I LOVE this idea. Such a great way to incorporate student voice into their own assessment. Did you find it was challenging for some of the students to answer the original question? If so, I'm curious how you supported those students in identifying some criteria. Thanks for sharing this! Awesome idea for cultivating student agency.

Photo of Erik Ray

Hey there! We can't wait for our first design workshop!

Great question. I find the high quality of student work on EL's Models of Excellence really helps students identify criteria we are aiming for. Our critique session was held whole group, and each student was provided a copy of the work. Just asking the students what makes it easy for them to read and navigate an information book was beneficial!