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Georgia Classrooms Live! - Building Student Capacity

Growing Great Writers

Building Student Capacity

Luz Montanez, Second Grade Teacher
Greens Acres Elementary School
Cobb County School District

Supporting Documents

Opinion Writing Lesson Plan
• Classroom Anchor Charts

Grade Level and Content Area

English Language Arts
Second Grade

Standards Addressed

English Language Arts Georgia Standards of Excellence (ELAGSE) 



This extraordinary 2nd Grade, ESOL teacher begins each class with the reminder to “show me college ready!” Setting expectations for learning begins with students unpacking the standard for writing an opinion piece and preparing their own rubric. Students are divided into interest groups in order to research and write their essays. Groups of students actively participate in discussions during conferences in large and small groups, with their teacher, and in peer and self-assessment practice sessions. Moreover, students participate in a writing seminar to demonstrate how to support an opinion using text evidence. These students produce amazing pieces of writing because they are invested in being college ready at this early age!

Video Segments

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Building the Rubric
Seminar: Self Assessment
Scoring Student Work: Giving Commentary
Peer Assessment

About the Teacher

Luz Angelica Montañez was a classroom teacher at Green Acres Elementary for seven years when this video was filmed.  This year she is serving as an Academic Coach for Norton Park Elementary.  She received her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education at Florida International University and her Masters of Education in Early Childhood from Kennesaw State University. Luz started her teaching career at Southside Elementary Museum Magnet School in Miami, Florida where she was trained by the Smithsonian Museums. Her priority is to let children know that they are deeply loved in her class.  Her teaching advice is to provide children opportunities to think about the world around them through interdisciplinary experiences.  When students make connections, they can be successful in all subject areas.  Love, world connections, and flexible grouping is the key to the success of her children.

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