Grade 7: Nature by Design by Bruce Brooks


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Reading Informational Text

RI.7.1 Cite several pieces of textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

RI.7.3 Analyze the interactions between individuals, events, and ideas in a text (e.g., how ideas influence individuals or events, or how individuals influence ideas or events).

RI.7.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.

RI.7.5 Analyze the structure an author uses to organize a text, including how the major sections contribute to the whole and to the development of the ideas.

RI.7.6 Determine an author’s point of view or purpose in a text and analyze how the author distinguishes his or her position from that of others.


W.7.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.

W.7.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.


This Grade 7 mini-assessment titled “ NATURE BY DESIGN by Bruce Brooks” cited on is intended to inform instruction about a student’s ability to engage in the close reading of a complex text to demonstrate deep understanding.  In this mini-assessment there are six selected-response questions that address the reading standards listed and one (optional) constructed-response question that addresses the writing standard listed. It is designed to be completed in one class session.


It is recommended to Connecticut teachers that the writing prompt not be made optional.


This mini-assessment is a good example of how to design text-dependent questions aligned to specific Common Core Standards. It could be used as a formative assessment at the start of the school year.  An annotated Teacher’s Guide for the assessment gives a specific rationale for each answer option and lists the standards addressed. Information about determining text complexity (quantitative and qualitative data) is included with assessment materials.