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NYC Helpline: How To: Manage Your Classroom
View Instructional Videos for Teachers about Classroom Management

Classroom Management (Secondary)

A high school science teacher demonstrates how her structured and routine-based classroom environment is the key to success.

Classroom Management (Elementary)

An elementary school teacher guides us through her daily classroom routines and shows how consistency and structure are essential.

Classroom Management through Cooperative Groups

View two elementary school teachers demonstrate how they engage their students through group work to help them learn.

How to Home
NYC Helpline: Manage Your Classroom
NYC Helpline: How To Get Started

Peer Editing
Carolyn Hornik

As educators, we want to give students more responsibility, accountability, and involvement in the learning process. Creating independent learners is the goal, and one way to approach that goal is to have students monitor their own progress through peer editing.

Peer editing involves students working together to evaluate and revise each others writing. As students review the writing of their peers, they share ideas, create an atmosphere of cooperation, develop independence and responsibility, identify strengths and weaknesses in their writing and reinforce editing skills.

An integral component of the writing process is rereading, evaluating, and revising written drafts. Often we find students who rewrite the same errors over and over again. I have found that students don’t like to reread and edit their own writing. They gloss over what they’ve written and leave numerous errors in grammar, usage, sentence structure and punctuation. (How many times have you reread your own writing and missed errors.) I have also found that when a student reviews the writing of another student, they read with a critical eye. They want to seek out and find errors to be corrected.

As part of a writer’s workshop, peer editing can be done in pairs or in groups. As students review each others work, they should begin with a positive comment about the writing. We all listen to criticism or suggestions with a more open ear when a compliment is given first. Specific corrections to be made should be pointed out. In addition to grammar, usage, spelling, and sentence structure work can be reviewed for details, figurative language, choice of vocabulary, variety of sentence structure, organization, transitions, completeness of thought, and writing style. Students might begin by having the writer read his written work aloud. This will help the peer editors establish the main idea of the piece and ensure that the writer rereads his/her work. After revisions are discussed have the student-writer make the corrections on the paper. This will help the student internalize the corrections for future writing.

As each new writing skill is introduced in a guided mini lesson, students can make use of peer editing in revising errors related to the new skill either in their own writing or on a sample piece of written work.

Students can use a rubric, sample writing checklist, or a class made writing checklist. For early childhood grades, this checklist is appropriate. Upper elementary editors may use this peer editing guide. Secondary students will find these editing checklists beneficial for editing a  summary paper, persuasive writing, descriptive paper, analysis, theme, comparing and contrasting. Students can refer to online mini-lessons in grammar, usage, and style elements. A standardized set of editing symbols can be used to indicate corrections that are needed.

Peer editing decreases the amount of paperwork for teachers. It develops self-esteem and encourages students to work more independently and produce a piece of standard-setting work. It enables students to work cooperatively and reinforces writing skills. Peer editing is a technique that results in active, motivated participants in the learning and writing process.

Related Resources:
Peer Edit With Perfection Handout

Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial

Additional Peer Editing Checklists:
Early Childhood Level:




Upper Elementary Level:

Secondary Level:


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