Sample Essay Prompts

The ATS-W prompt currently has four important areas on which to focus:

  • An opening statement;
  • A goal statement;
  • Sample goals;
  • And Writing Instructions

Below, we have recreated sample essay prompts for review.  If you want to add to our list, please email us.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 |

To jump ahead, please click on the sample number you wish to review.

Sample 1



It is important for teachers to be able foster an appreciation of literature in their students. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 3: Students will continue to develop 
an appreciation for literature.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will identify and be able to emulate various literary forms (poetry, plays, biographies, folktales, myths) in their own writing.
  • Students will explain the elements of a story (plot, characters, setting) that contribute to the emotional impact the story has on them. 
  • Students will be able to predict and analyze the plot lines in a story. 
  • Students will respond to literature from a variety of cultures through such means as response journals, illustrations and role playing.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.
Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 2



It is important for teachers to be able foster an awareness of different cultural groups in their students. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 5: Students will develop an appreciation of the positive contributions of all cultures to the school community and to the neighborhood in which they live.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will acknowledge the richness of their language, background, and culture, as well as those of their peers.
  • Students will develop mutual respect and acceptance of cultural differences through appropriate work/play experiences.
  • Students will use the family and community as ongoing, important resources for extending their understanding of languages and cultures.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.
Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 3



It is important for teachers to be able to foster an awareness of numbers, numeration and number sense in their students. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 10: Students will construct number meanings and develop number sense for the purpose of linking mathematics to real life situations in our culturally diverse society.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will identify numerical information within a picture or word 
    problem.
  • Students will develop number questions based on daily life experiences. (e.g., questions about attendance, temperature, cost of items in a store).
  • Students will translate word problems into number sentences.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.
Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 4



It is important for teachers to be able to foster an understanding of space and spatial relationships in their students. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 10: Students will learn to use maps, globes, charts and other graphic and pictorial material for the purpose of understanding physical and spatial characteristics.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will learn to interpret pictorial and/or abstract symbols in maps, globes and charts and identify them with what they represent in the actual world.
  • Students will learn to calculate distances based on the scale a map 
    uses.
  • Students will learn to identify distant countries and their own country by their physical and/or geographical characteristics.

In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:
  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.
Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 5



It is important for teachers to be able to assess the needs and understanding of their students. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 13: Students will be assessed in a variety of ways in order to ensure that their needs are being met and that they are internalizing classroom instruction in a meaningful manner.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students' learning styles and preferences will be assessed in order to plan appropriate learning activities that will keep them motivated and interested in the learning process.
  • Students' understanding of important topics will be formally and informally evaluated in order to assure that students have mastered the material before moving on.
  • Students will be encouraged to participate in the assessment process by self-evaluating their progress in a particular area (i.e. math, reading, writing).

In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:
  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.
Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 6



It is important for students to be able to understand and apply scientific concepts. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 14: Students will both understand and apply scientific concepts that pertain to the physical landscape and living environment.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will be able to explain everyday occurrences using scientific concepts, principles and theory. (e.g. boiling water)
  • Students will employ the method of scientific observation and inquiry to come up with theories and/or hypotheses of their own.
  • Students will be able to understand how ideas in science have historically developed.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.

Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

Sample 7



It is important for students to be able to use writing in all aspects of the curriculum. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 15: Students will develop their writing capabilities by using them throughout the curriculum.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will use different literary genres (e.g. short story, poem, essay) to express their perspectives and opinions on a variety of social and personal issues.
  • Students will use forms of writing that will allow them to explore and come to a deeper understanding of material being learned in specific content areas (e.g. science, social studies).
  • Students will learn to write for the purpose of critically analyzing and evaluating literature and the validity of other writers' opinions.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.

Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.


Sample 8



It is important for Limited English Proficient students to have relevant classroom experiences. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 16: Provide students who are English Language Learners with effective learning experiences in a regular education classroom.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Work with others inside and outside the school to facilitate the English language acquisition of students that are English Language Learners.
  • Individualize instruction to promote learning and English language development for students that are English Language Learners.
  • Implement procedures to ensure that students that are English Language Learners participate to the
    greatest extent possible in all classroom activities.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.

Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.


Sample 9



It is important for students to be able to have an understanding of the world in which they live. Imagine that the educational goal below, formulated by a joint committee of teachers, administrators, and parents/guardians, has been established for your school.
 


GOALS FOR EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE


Goal 17: Provide students with an understanding of the social world in which they live and how it got that way.

Examples Of Teaching Objectives:
  • Students will learn about the history, geography and culture of the United States and/or the world at
    large.
  • Students will learn about their neighborhood, community and home state; how people live and work there; how they meet their basic needs of life; how they interact and depend on each other.
  • Students will learn about basic human institutions found all throughout the world, such as family, education and the economy.


In an essay written for a group of New York State educators, frame your response by identifying a grade level/subject area for which you are prepared to teach, then:

  1. Explain the importance of helping students develop this goal;
  2. Describe two strategies you would use to achieve this educational goal; and
  3. Explain why the strategies you describe would be effective in achieving this educational goal.

Be sure to specify a grade level/subject area in your essay, and frame your ideas so that an educator certified at your level (i.e. elementary or secondary) will be able to understand the basis for your response.

*Samples adopted by Martha Rosas and developed by and courtesy of  NYSTCE.

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