I really like just a little bit of output. I have my superstars retell a story that we’re just starting on to figure out whether they’ve got the grammar, and I have pairs retell a story after we’ve done it a few ways to get them more input from reading and to assess where they are with the structures.
After having done some serious grading over the weekend (inspired by all the tales of others with piles of papers to grade!) I realized that I need to have kids getting their spelling corrected a bit more often, so I went from a story into dictation twice today. From there, I had the kids fill in the story, and then they got to re-tell it. I was actually kind of shocked by some of the spelling I saw on the weekend, but then I was happy with seeing a lot of the spelling improve just over the course of a dictation. That probably means the monitor is working hard, which may mean that acquisition is slowing.