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ESOL Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced - Echegaray

Topics

1. Your favorite activity on your day off.

2. One good or bad reason to watch or avoid TV.

3. One good or bad reason to live in an apartment or a house.

4. The person whom you admire or dislike the most and why.

5. What is the best natural feature or location in your home country, and what do you do there?

Your essay should be about 5 sentences long.

If you especially like one of these topics, expand on it in your 5-paragraph essay later in the semester.

Example 1-Paragraph Essay

     The Pensacola area includes many places of natural beauty, but my favorite is Bayview Park in East Hill.  Sometimes I sit on one of the benches near the dog beach and watch the dogs play together in the water.  Some of the dogs even swim by themselves out to the floating platform in deeper water.  Often I walk the paved path that goes all the way around the park.  It’s a lot nicer than walking on a track!  These are my favorite activities in Bayview Park.

The Writing Process

When good writers write an essay, they

  1. Gather their ideas.
  2. Organize their ideas.
  3. Write their ideas in sentences and paragraphs.
  4. Check and revise their work.          

Four steps

I.  Gathering Ideas

A writer thinks about possible topics for his essay.  He writes his ideas down on paper without analyzing them, just to get his thoughts going.  This process is called brainstorming.  Don't worry about your spelling or punctuation--just write! 

Here's a sample idea list for a paragraph about the morning of a perfect day off.

take a long shower and read the newspaper and drink a cup of coffee

take my time getting ready

sleep late

not have to get up at 4:30, as on a workday

cook dinner

get up at 10:00

II. Organizing 

Once the writer has gotten several good ideas for his essay, he organizes them into a logical order. Any ideas that don't fit the essay topic are eliminated.

Look again at the list above about the morning of a perfect day off.  Cross off any ideas that are not about the topic.

If you crossed off cook dinner, your answer is correct.  Cook dinner does not fit the topic of the morning of a perfect day off.  Look at how the writer organized the list.

5.  take a long shower and read the newspaper and drink coffee

4.  take my time getting ready

1.  sleep late

2.  not have to get up at 4:30, as on a weekday

     cook dinner   

3.  get up at 10:00

Now the writer is ready to start writing.

III. Writing

Now the ideas are written down in sentence and paragraph form.  If the writer makes a few mistakes or needs to reorder the ideas, that's OK!  He can go back and change that later, in the revision stage.

     In the morning of a perfec day off I will sleep late.  On most days I have to get up at 4:30.  Then I have to rush to get to work by 5:30.  When I have a day off I really like to sleep until 10:00 and then take my time getting up and geting redy.  So on my perfect day off after I get up, I will take a long shower.  Then have a cup of coffee while I read the newspaper.

Notice that the writer made a few mistakes.  Don't worry if you make a few mistakes while you write.  Just focus on getting your ideas on paper.  Then go back and check your work in the final step of the writing process.

IV. Revision

Finally, the writer checks his work.  He checks grammar, punctuation, spelling and usage. He also reads over his work to make sure it's easy for the reader to understand and makes logical sense.

Look at the writer's final, revised paragraph:

     In the morning of a perfec perfect day off I will sleep late.  On most days I have to get up at 4:30.  Then I have to rush to get to work by 5:30.  When I have a day off I really like to sleep until 10:00 and then take my time getting up and geting redy getting ready.  So on my perfect day off after I get up, I will take a long shower.  Then  [insert I'll] have a cup of coffee while I read the newspaper.

Part A Directions:  Match the step of the writing process with what a writer does in that step.  Write the letter on the appropriate line.

_____Write

  

  a. check the essay to make sure it is well-written

_____Gather ideas 

 

  b. put the list of ideas in an order that makes sense 

_____Revise

 

  c. create a list of ideas

_____Organize

 

  d. create a draft of the essay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part B Directions:  Put the steps of the writing process in order.  Write numbers from 1 (first) to 4 (last) on the line.

_______ Write

_______ Gather Ideas

_______ Revise

_______ Organize

Combining Sentences

Coordinating

Conjunction

Use

Example

and

to add related information

  My teacher dictates the sentence, and I write it down.

but, yet

to show contrast

  John threw the ball to Spot, but the dog refused to return it.

or

to show a choice

  The customers can order at the counter, or they can order over the phone.

nor

to show rejection of two choices

  I want neither the beef taco, nor the fish taco.

for

to link effect to cause

  She didn’t come to work, for she wasn’t feeling well.

so

to link cause to effect

  She wasn’t feeling well, so she didn’t come to work.

Notice that a comma precedes every coordinating conjunction.

Complex Sentences

Subordinating

Conjunction

Use

Example

  before

  after

  while

  when 

  whenever

  until

  as soon as

  as long as

  to show time

We can’t start the meeting until the boss arrives.

 

Whenever I read, I use my new glasses.

 

Let’s get ice cream after the movie.

 

As long as I leave work on time, I’ll be home for dinner.

  because

  since

  so that

  in order that

  to show cause and effect or purpose

Since I jog every morning, I’ve lost weight.

 

I bought this house because it was a bargain.

  if

  unless

  whether

  to show a condition

She can’t attend this college unless she takes the SAT.

 

Snow may fall if the weather is cold enough.

  though

  although

  even though

  whereas

  to show contrast

I gave them a wedding gift even though they didn’t ask for one.

 

Although I was hungry, I skipped lunch.

  as though

  as if

  to show similarity

She ate as though she hadn’t eaten for days.

  where

  wherever

  to show place

The new professor teaches wherever he’s needed.