Professional Learning in 2017-18 (Part 3): Text-Dependent Writing – Reading with Purpose, Writing That Shows It

Based on collaboration with teachers and students in 2016-17, one fact became clear: Some students write well, yet still don’t do so well on text-dependent writing questions. Writing is not the issue. The issue has more to do with reading.

GCA’s professional learning sessions on text-dependent writing continue to focus on the elements of strong argumentative, informative, and narrative text-dependent writing. New for 2017-18 is an increased focus on practical strategies for helping students read literary and informational texts with purpose, so they can use appropriate evidence from these texts when writing.

All types of text-dependent writing are covered – short-constructed response, narrative, and essay.

What can participants expect from this session?


  • For each type of text-dependent writing question, participants can expect a rich discussion on helping students read the associated text(s) deeply, starting with less rigorous discussion questions before moving to more rigorous discussion questions, as students develop confidence. All discussion questions are aligned to specific reading standards. GCA facilitators provide a model sequence, and then participants create a sequence of their own.
  • Participants can expect to discuss a process for teaching text-dependent writing in a scaffolded way. With literary texts, this means starting with short-constructed response before moving to the narrative. With informational texts, this means starting with one text and one short-constructed response, before adding a related informational text with a second short-constructed response. Finally, the focus turns to an essay, related to both informational texts.
  • Finally, participants can expect to develop a strong understanding of what successful text-dependent writing looks like, using student exemplars as models. This information is useful for both feedback and instruction.

Sessions are customized to specific grade bands (e.g., K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12).

Text-dependent writing is a type of writing people do throughout their lives. It is both challenging and rewarding. GCA would love to partner with you to promote student success on this life skill.


This article is third installment of our three-part blog series highlighting new Professional Learning opportunities with GCA in 2017-18. Part 1 explored the new Georgia Standards of Excellence in Science and Social Studies and Part 2 covered our Professional Learning offerings on Fine-Tuning Your Classroom Assessments.  

Click here to visit our Professional Learning webpage to discover more:

Professional Learning