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February 2, 2023

How Asynchronous Writing Support Can Be Used in a K-12 Classroom

Building strong writing skills benefits students in all subjects, not just the subjects that are typically associated with writing, such as History and English. The process of writing helps students remember key information, connect different concepts together, and synthesize the information in exciting ways. Here's how asynchronous writing support can be used in a K-12 classroom.

Assignments with constructed responses or essays responses help teachers understand how much the students are comprehending. In a study conducted by Professor Steve Graham and his colleagues at Arizona State University's Teachers College, student writing across content areas equated to student’s demonstrating enhanced learning outcomes. By allowing students the opportunity to synthesize their learning in writing, educators push students to dive deeper into content areas and master key skills, such as critical thinking, research, and communication. Writing can be used as a tool to promote learning in all K-12 subjects.

Pear Deck Tutor's (formerly TutorMe) Writing Lab supports student writing by offering asynchronous writing feedback during the writing process. When students submit work-in-progress writing assignments to the Writing Lab, they receive feedback within hours to help them refine their drafts before final submission. This boosts students’ confidence in their final submissions, while simultaneously relieving teachers from having to review and provide in-depth feedback on dozens of first drafts.

What is the Pear Deck Tutor Writing Lab ?

Pear Deck Tutor's Writing Lab provides asynchronous writing support virtually to students throughout the writing process. Unlike Pear Deck Tutor's on-demand online tutoring, the Writing Lab is not real-time support that occurs through live video, audio, or text-based chat. Instead, a student submits a writing assignment, and an academic writing tutor will read it, leave feedback, and return it to the student within 12 hours, guaranteed – often that feedback is returned even faster...

Pear Deck Tutor’s Writing Lab tutors provide feedback on:

  • Meeting assignment expectations
  • Clear focus/purpose/thesis statement
  • Logical and appropriate organization
  • Topic and paragraph development
  • Integrating research appropriately
  • Appropriate voice/style for genre
  • Formatting/citations/references
  • Correct grammar and punctuation

Through Pear Deck Tutor’s Writing Lab, asynchronous writing support is available 24/7. For students working on essays and writing projects over an extended period of time, they can submit revised pieces multiple times – increasing their mastery of writing at each revision stage. Feedback provided during the writing process is more impactful to student learning than feedback provided after a submission.

How Pear Deck Tutor's Writing Lab can help in the K-12 classroom

Academic writing tutors provide detailed feedback on student drafts, helping students improve their writing skills. While the feedback is focused on a specific assignment, it can also be applied to the student’s writing process as a whole by identifying areas for growth. As students improve their writing, they will have more positive writing experiences that will help them in the future.

Research supports using long-form writing as a central assignment to reinforce skills, knowledge, and foster critical thinking. However, for many teachers, giving multiple essay assignments throughout a quarter is a huge burden for grading. Consider a high school teacher who teaches over 150 students throughout the day. If that teacher assigns a paper to each student, and then spends five minutes reading and providing feedback to each paper, it would take more than 12 hours to finish all of them.

How teachers have utilized asynchronous writing support to increase rigor in the classroom

Hannah Hodge, a secondary English teacher in an Oklahoma City high school, saw the value of asynchronous writing support when she utilized Pear Deck Tutor’s Writing Lab as an in-class support tool during her research essay unit.

In her class, each student submitted a draft of their research essay and received in-depth 1:1 feedback on their writing from expert tutors. Ms. Hodge was able to provide more rigorous instruction focusing on elements of writing that she often left out before when she was trying to provide all the writing feedback herself.

Ms. Hodge discusses her experience on EdCuration’s podcast

"The tutors focused on grammar and commentary, what the students were saying and the depth of their reasoning, and that gave me time to focus on works cited pages and what a proper MLA format paper looks like. Which I feel like in years prior, would've been put on the back burner. But I was actually able to focus on that thanks to Pear Deck Tutor." – Hannah Hodge, English Teacher

Ultimately, Ms. Hodge found that creating a culture where asynchronous writing support is seamlessly embedded into the class day increased the rigor of her writing unit. She was able to utilize the additional support of writing tutors to provide direct feedback to her students, allowing her to focus on elements of writing that she had previously had to omit due to limited time.

Imagine Pear Deck Tutor's Writing Lab in your classroom

Asynchronous writing support in the classroom is an excellent resource to increase writing fluency, grammar skills, and communication confidence. With less time spent on providing specific feedback, teachers are able to spend more time focusing on the finer aspects of their assignments.

With a guaranteed 12-hour turnaround, Pear Deck Tutor’s Writing Lab allows for students to receive actionable feedback throughout the writing process. When integrated into a classroom, this leads to a culture centered on rigor, mastery, and growth.

Interested in bringing Pear Deck Tutor’s Writing Lab to your schools? Contact the Pear Deck Tutor team to learn more about the Writing Lab and personalized learning.


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Amanda Nielsen
Writing Specialist

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