Time limits mean that you do not have much time to review your work and make changes. However, even just 5 minutes at the end can make a big difference. Don't be tempted to submit an essay before the time is up when those remaining minutes could help you catch some easy to fix mistakes.
Before you take a test with a timed writing question, look at feedback your writing teacher has given you on your writing.
- Has your teacher given you feedback on an organization mistake more than once?
- Have you been given comments about problems with developing and supporting ideas?
- Is there feedback that shows you that your ideas are not clear on the first draft?
- Does your teacher comment frequently about sentences being unconnected to the rest of the paragraph?
Use the feedback you have received in the past to focus the few minutes at the end of your time to look for the mistakes you have made in other first drafts. Timed writing is a first draft experience, so the feedback on first drafts is a good place to start. Meet with your teacher during office hours before a test to get tips for how to recognize and resolve those errors during the test.
In addition to the writing feedback you have been given, take some time to review the feedback you get from your grammar teacher about your grammar accuracy in writing.
- Are there patterns of errors with specific grammar structures that you can look for?
Meet with your grammar teacher during office hours before to get tips for how to recognize and resolve those errors during a timed test. It might be as simple as checking that all of your sentences start with a capital letter or looking for subject-verb agreement. Knowing your common mistakes can empower you to make quick changes.
Exercise 1: Review Feedback
For this exercise, you will need to have access to recent feedback on your writing and/or grammar assignments.
- What do the comments say about your organization, development, clarity, and unity?
- What types of grammar corrections do you frequently receive?
Exercise 2: Timed Writing Practice
You have 30 minutes to respond to this prompt. Your answer should be around 300 words long. Remember to save the last 5 minutes to check your writing.
Prompt: What is a skill you want to develop? Explain why that skill would be valuable for your life. Be sure to use examples and clear explanations.