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Teaching With Technology Portforlio
Powerpoint Presentation
My Resume
Primary Source Lesson Plan
Essential Question LP
Graphic Organizer
Student Internet Research LP
Star Testing
Database Assignment
Assistive Technology for Blind and Low Vision Students
Photos and Art

Mrs. Ramella's Electronic Portfolio for Educ. 9045B

This is a rubric created for the Gold Rush Letter Assignment.  The student letter explaining the assignment is also included.  The lesson plan for this assignment is in the link called Essential Question Lesson Plan.

Essential Question Lesson Plan

 Rubric for Gold Rush Letter



Scoring Criteria







The student did not attempt the paper

Barely attempted.  There was a lack of understanding on what was asked to do.

Incomplete.  Student does not address question in appropriate manner, very little details

Appropriate style and format.  Well organized and clearly written.  Missing some details, or less than three questions scenarios are addressed

Well written and organized.  Contains vivid details, examples, descriptions, and insight.

Format of letter

Student did not attempt to write in a letter format

Student tried to write in a letter format but is missing something such as date, greeting, closure

Student used appropriate letter format, but did not answer 3 questions/and or scenarios

Appropriate letter format.  Answered 3 questions/scenarios but did not provide answers in paragraph form

Appropriate format.  3Questions/secarios answered in paragraph form.  Answers to questions are in paragraph form, as when writing a letter.

Details and descriptive writing

Student did not include any details in letter-off topic

Student provides minimal details.  Answers are not in paragraphs.


Some details but not very descriptive  Student did not give details for each question/scenario

Descriptive and vivid details for each question/scenario.  Student understands what life was like during that time period

Reading this letter seems like it’s authentic.  The details are vivid and clear-feels like the reader is there


Student did not attempt the assignment

Unorganized paragraphs.  Question is not answered in the paragraph, but is answered elsewhere in the letter or not at all

Ideas do not flow smoothly, Jump from one idea to the next within the same paragraph.






Generally well organized.  Some paragraphs don’t flow smoothly-rapid change in topic/ question

Paragraphs flow smoothly from one topic to the next.  There is a definite beginning and end.  Easy to follow

Appropriate questions answered or scenarios described


Student did not answer questions or describe the appropriate scenario

Student did not understand the questions to answer, but made an attempt

Student answered some of the questions, or described some scenarios, but did not answer or describe 3

Student answered 3 questions or scenarios but did not answer all completely.

3 questions/scenarios were answered in details.  Shows an understanding of life during the Gold Rush.


Student didn’t write a paper

The letter is poorly presented. Significant number of proofreading errors, sentence fragments, spelling error, and punctuation errors

The letter appears to have been proofread thoroughly.  Many errors in capitalization, punctuation and word usage.  Written in complete sentences but not in paragraphs

Generally well proofread, but has a few minor errors.

Excellent job proofreading.  No noticeable errors. 



This is a student handout explaining the letter writing assignment.

Gold Rush Assignment


We have been studying the Discovery of Gold in California.  In this unit, we have discussed several topics about the Gold Rush, such as:   Where was gold found in California?  Who came to California?  What were the gold rush towns like?


We have spent the last 2 class periods analyzing and discussing data from the 1852 Eldorado County Census.  We have discussed the people who came in California in search of gold.  You have chosen a person (or family) of interest from this census and I have written his/her name down.


From this person’s perspective you are to write a letter home describing/answering at least 3 of the following questions:  imagining that you are that person (or family) just walking into town.  You are to imagine what it would be like living in the there, and hearing all the different languages spoken, and seeing people from all the different cultures.  You can describe what a typical day is like, what the town is like, and what its inhabitants are like.  (I.e. are there mostly men in this town or are there families? What type of people lives there, and where are they from? ) What is your typical day like?  What is your job?  Are you a miner?  Have you found any gold?  How does it feel to find/not find any gold?  What are your dreams and plans for the future? (I.e. will you stay in California or go back where you came from?)   If you left your family behind tell them how you feel about that, and when you expect to see them again.  You might want to describe the weather and how it affects your mood and mining efforts.


The letter is to be in a proper letter format. Each question you are answering or scenario you are describing is to have details, and be at least a paragraph.