ELA 5: Giving Effective Feedback

You really need to get better at offering constructive criticism. You're terrible at it now. The worst. The absolu...oh. ...Guess we're not great at it either. Okay, scoot over. We'll watch this with you.

5th GradeLanguage Arts
Elementary and Middle School5th Grade
LanguageEnglish Language

Transcript

00:24

And unfortunately, some people use criticism like a flamethrower, and just burn other people's

00:29

work to a crisp. [Painting is burnt]

00:30

Not only is that not effective, it's also pretty dangerous. [House is on fire.]

00:34

So let's figure out how to deliver constructive feedback that won't land you in jail for arson. [Police arrive]

00:38

Before we get to the nitty-gritty of constructive criticism, it's worth thinking about

00:42

how we deliver our criticism. [Fire truck zooms by]

00:44

We’re not saying that what’s on the outside is more important than what’s on the inside,

00:47

but let’s not pretend that a present wrapped with a pretty bow

00:51

isn’t more exciting than one in a plastic bag. [Person picks up present]

00:53

For one thing, it's helpful to take the word "you" out of your criticism. [Coop teaches]

00:57

Remember, the focus is on a person’s work, not the actual person, so let’s try not

01:02

to get too personal.

01:03

…Janet. [Janet is in jail]

01:04

It's also a good idea to start and end on positive notes. [Dino teaches]

01:07

The person probably did some things right – we hope–– and noting those things

01:11

can help give them the confidence to improve the things they weren't so hot on.

01:15

And no, they don't need to be literally hot. [Janet compliments]

01:18

No more flame throwers, Janet.

01:20

When it comes to your actual criticisms, there are two main things to think about.

01:24

The first is giving notes to help strengthen their arguments. [Coop teaches]

01:27

Often when writing an argumentative essay, people will make arguments that are satisfying

01:31

to them, but not quite convincing to everyone else. [Typing an essay]

01:34

Sure, Max might think that school uniforms are a good idea because it makes every day

01:38

twin day, but maybe you’re not buying it. [Max tries to convince]

01:41

If you see an argument like that, and you know how to improve it, go for it!

01:45

Make it stronger…who doesn't want stronger arguments? [Person works out]

01:47

If a weak argument is Popeye, your good criticism can be spinach.

01:51

The other key to effective criticism is finding objections the writer might have missed. [Coop teaches]

01:55

We know that to defend an argument, we need to block possible counterclaims.

01:58

A writer might have blocked some of them, but if you notice some ninja counterclaims [Goalie blocks]

02:02

that they haven't mentioned in their essay, you'd better tell them, or that argument's

02:06

going to be in serious trouble.

02:08

By following these tips, you'll be able to deliver super helpful criticism. [Dino teaches]

02:11

So, leave the flame throwing to people who want to roast marshmallows,

02:15

but can't find any matches. [Fire]