The Four Square Writing Method is a simplified graphic organizer for teaching writing to children in school. While primarily used to teach persuasive writing, it has also been used to help teach deconstruction. The method was developed by Judith S. Gould and Evan Jay Gould, in 1999.
It was developed initially for primary school students, but has also been used in high school classes.
The method is primarily a visual framework for assisting students with formulating ideas in an organized manner prior to writing an essay.
The concept generally works as follows:
Variations of the above rules may require more or less development in each of the rectangles, depending on the grade-level or maturity of the student.
Results show a consistent increase in the ability of students to write persuasively. A study at Springview Elementary School, in Allendale Charter Township, Michigan, noted, "significant growth was observed in the students' writings in both classes." Another study, done at American Senior High School in Miami-Dade County, Florida, done with older students, showed an increase in FCAT scores. "(P)re/post test results, American Senior High persuasive writing scores improved overall", though not as marked as the Michigan grade school students. It was noted that one teacher had remarkably more success with the program than others, and that teachers must be trained thoroughly to get best results from this method.