Descriptive Writing for NBPTS Portfolio Success

national board renewal Nov 06, 2019

Unlike the initial certification process for National Boards, the renewal process allows for only a few pages of written commentary, which requires extreme control on the part of the writer to use his/her words wisely.  Therefore, it is important to understand the types of writing needed and when to use them. 

In this post I will be discussing the first and maybe most important writing style necessary for producing a portfolio that is clear and concise. 

Descriptive writing is used in the PPG to “set the scene” for each PGE in Component One.  In fact, most of Component One’s 12-page written commentary will be descriptive writing.  In addition, you will use descriptive writing to set the stage for your learning experiences in both Component Two and Three. You will need to logically order a detailed description of your instructional choices and situation.  This description is extremely important for the assessor to understand the what, when, where, and who related to each PGE you are highlighting.

Important things to remember about descriptive writing in the National Board Renewal Process:

  1. May answer what, how, state, list, which, or describe questions
  2. Lists or describes in detail the content you teach, instructional challenges you face, achievement levels you support and any other information that will help the assessor visualize being in your classroom.
  3. Descriptive writing is the writing style you use to outline things like goals, objectives, and any other planning BEFORE you are ready to analyze the student work or video lesson evidence.
  4. Your descriptive writing should fully prepare the scorer to understand your analysis and reflection found in parts of Component Two, Three and the Reflection.
  5. Don’t include information that is irrelevant to your instruction or student learning.

Here is the beginning of example 1 of descriptive writing (bold-face text) given in the NBPTS general portfolio instructions.





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