Guidelines for Domain Cover Letters*

*University Heights Middle School and High School, Revised, September 1996

What? So What? Now What?

Either: You've selected a number of old and new projects that show your growth and accomplishment in one of the University Heights domains. You and your family group teacher have agreed that this body of work is appropriate, sufficient, and significant. You both agree that the material in your portfolio will show that you have mastered a domain.

Or: You have just finished a project and you want to reflect on it while it's fresh in you mind, so you've decided to write a chunk of a domain cover letter. You and you family group teacher are clear that you only have part of what you need in your portfolio to be ready for a roundtable. Some have called this a project cover letter. Later, when you have more projects in your portfolio, you'll need to make connections between this project and the others that you'll use to demonstrate mastery in this domain.

Now you are ready to describe your work in a cover letter. Keep this work in front of you. These are questions you can ask yourself its you are writing. Take the best, leave the rest.


1. What was the assignment?

2. What important decisions did I make as we were working?

(a) individually (b) in my work group (c) with the family group or seminar
3. What parts can I copy from my daily reflections to show what I was learning along the way?

4. What specific places in my work would I want people to notice at a roundtable?

5. What models did I use to guide my work?

6. How did I know when I was doing good work? What level(s) was I working on?

7. Where in my work do I answer the essential question?

8. Which of the domain's habits of leaming/levels was I practicing the most?

So What?

1. How can I describe in my own words what was valuable about this work for me?

2. What new thoughts, knowledge, skills, or understanding did I develop?

3. What habits can be seen in most all of the projects I'm presenting?

4. How do I see myself using these habits in my life? (See Levels 4 and 6)

5. How does this portfolio show me growing in this domain over time?

Now What?

1. What might I have worked on more or done better?

2. Given what I know now, what do I want to investigate next?

3. How will I develop the habits I need to reach mastery at the next benchmark in my life?