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TELPAS Writing Prompt Samples

Instructor: Frank Clint

Frank has been an educator for over 10 years. He has a doctorate degree in education with a concentration in curriculum and instruction.

The Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS) measures English language proficiency of limited English proficient students. These writing prompt samples will help you understand how to collect writing samples for your students.

Eligible Writing Types

As a Texas teacher of ELL students, you will need to collect writing samples during a testing window each year. The Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS) requires a writing collection with a total of five samples each year for grades 2-12. From each collection, at least one sample should use past tense, and two should be from the content areas of math, science, or social studies. These should include a range of easier to more challenging writing prompts to assess progress.

Writing can be on a familiar topic or about a familiar process such as personal narratives or reflective pieces. You can collect expository writing from language arts, or expository and procedural writing from social studies, math, and science. Explore some of theses TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills)-based writing prompts, focusing on narration, description, and explanatory writing, to discover if they work for your students.

Elementary Narrative Prompts

  • Think about a time you went on a field trip. Tell a story about that day and all the things you did.
  • Write about a time you went to a new place that you had never been before.

Secondary Narrative Prompts

  • Think about a time you were successful. Write a personal narrative about what you did and how hard you worked to see success.
  • Who is your role model? Tell about who this person is and describe the qualities that cause you to admire this person.

Elementary Reading Prompts

  • Summarize the story and describe the lesson that it teaches you.
  • Describe similarities and differences between the two stories.

Secondary Reading Prompts

  • Describe all of the themes the author conveys throughout the story.
  • What is the universal theme found in both pieces of literature? Describe the theme and defend your answer.
  • Explain how the how the character's beliefs and values were affected by the historical setting of the piece of literature.

Math Prompts for Elementary and Secondary

  • Choose a problem that you solved. Think about the strategy that you used and explain how you found the answer.
  • Choose a problem that you solved. Explain all of the steps you took to solve the problem.

Elementary Math Prompts

  • Explain the difference between finding the area and perimeter of a rectangle.
  • Describe a sphere, a triangular prism, and a rectangular prism. Explain how they are different.

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