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SPRING 2016 SOLVED ASSIGNMENT # 2 B.ED ENGLISH
Teaching of English aiou code 519 for B.Ed. is offered by the Open University in spring semester 2016 to the B.Ed students. This assignment describes the techniques of teaching of English, teaching prose and pronunciation skills of English, rules and principles for writing correct English.
Q. 1 Describe briefly some specific techniques of teaching of English. (20)
Vocabulary in ESL programs. However, it is just as important because with bad or garbled pronunciation, the spoken message gets lost. “1 think” becomes “I sink,” to give a common example. With ESL learners across the world, each country and culture has its own verbal albatross. Here is how can you can begin to use pronunciation for your students’ needs.
Pronunciation is an essential component not only of learning a language but also of using that language. For this reason, the learning of proper pronunciation is a delicate area; students need to feel free to make mistakes and practice their pronunciation in order to increase their accuracy, but there are also times when pronunciation must be quickly corrected so that it does not impede the students’ ability to understand and be understood. Below we will look more closely at pronunciation and activities that can help students improve their pronunciation.
Structuralism is a theory that seeks to explain broad subjects by looking at their individual components and how they interact. This is particularly useful when teaching English; many people learn English by applying individual elements, such as grammar and vocabulary. Taking the structuralist approach to teaching English will help you develop a methodology that can be applied to any problem.
Specific Techniques of teaching of English
Structuralism views a thing as a complex system of interrelated parts. The structural approach to English views the language as being divided into several components; these components interact with each other and form the rules of the language. Structuralist approaches to teaching English help students learn through context. Theoretically, the students learn how to piece the parts of English together into a more complete understanding of the language.
How it applies
When you divide English into its basics, you reduce words into several categories, such as nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions and particles. Every word falls into one of these basic categories. The words individually have meanings which signify objects, actions and situations in the real world. When combined into sentences, the meanings are unique and often transcend the meanings of their components. Students learn a language by using the parts and intuitively learning how they interact.
Many different methods and methodologies exist for the teaching of English. The variety of methods are differentiated by their theories of language acquisition and the way the courses, procedures and activities are structured. But at the most basic level, these teaching methods will focus on at least one of the following: grammar, conversation (vocabulary) or conversation (meaning). For example, Latin, which is no longer spoken, is learned via a focus on grammar. French or German, on the other hand, are more commonly learned via conversational methods, which are better suited to languages currently in use.
English is both a verbal and a written language. As a result, the types of media for English learners can be quite varied. Learner’s textbooks often include non-authentic written materials (materials that have been created for the textbook) as well as original materials like articles from newspapers and magazines.
Listening exercises and video clips are other kinds of media that can be used in or out of the classroom and aid in a verbal and aural understanding of the language.
Internet and computer-based programs, games, puzzles and “realia” (objects) can also be used to assist the students’ learning. These kinds of media are quite popular among students, being more “fun” than the traditional written exercises.
Choosing material for lessons involves knowing your student’s level of English, interests and preferences. Look for materials that will keep your students’ interest, that are challenging enough to be encouraging but not so difficult that they will become discouraged. Whenever possible, use up-to-date authentic materials that allow students to see how much of their knowledge can be used in a real-life setting.
Experiment to discover the methods that work best for you as a teacher and what media choices are most appreciated (and helpful) for your students. Enjoy being part of their language learning goals!
Background and principles
Gattegno was an outsider to language education when Teaching Foreign Languages in Schools was first published in 1963. The book conspicuously lacked the names of most prominent language educators and linguists of the time, and for some time afterwards Gattegno’s works were only rarely cited in language education books and journals. He was previously a designer of mathematics and reading programmes, and the use of color charts and colored Cuisenaire rods in the Silent Way grew directly out of this experience.
Gattegno was openly sceptical of the role the linguistic theory of his time had in language teaching. He felt that linguistic studies “may be a specialization [that] carry with them a narrow opening of one’s sensitivity and perhaps serve very little towards the broad end in mind”. The Silent Way is a special case of Gattegno’s broader educational principles. Gattegno developed these ideas to solve general problems in learning, and he also applied them to his work in the teaching of mathematics and spelling in the mother tongue. Broadly, these principles are:
Teachers should concentrate on how students learn, and their teaching should grow out of this Imitation and drill are not the primary means by which students learn Learning consists of trial and error, deliberate experimentation, suspending judgment, and revising conclusions In learning, learners draw on everything that they already know, especially their native language . The teacher should take care not interfere with the learning process These principles situate the Silent Way in the tradition of discovery learning, that sees learning as a creative problem-solving activity.
We know from Higgs Graph of Learner Needs that pronunciation is something that is very important to beginner learners as it allows them to feel more comfortable when speaking; teachers must be aware, however, that the more sounds differ between the mother tongue and the second language, the higher the affective filter. A student feeling too self-conscious will not be as willing to take the risks that are necessary when learning a new language.
Learning in a classroom context
Pronunciation is an interesting area because when learning in a classroom context, pronunciation isn’t usually a major factor that influences comprehension however, it may be when the learner uses the SL in the community. The value of teaching pronunciation cannot be underestimated. Besides the difficulty of changing a bad habit •, early pronunciation instruction helps students understand how to form sounds that are not found in their mother tongue, contributes to decoding ability and lowers the affective filter. Some researchers suggest that pronunciation does not need to be taught and will take care of itself’ over time. Others suggest that teaching pronunciation is necessary. What do you think? It is very difficult to achieve native like pronunciation in any language. Some language societies have greater tolerance of accents’ than others; some even find certain accents more appealing. For example, many Canadian documentaries are narrated by people with British accents. In some societies people may appear to not understand someone whose accent does not approximate the native speaker’s (e.g. Parisians or Muscovites). In some countries foreign accents are perfectly acceptable in informal conversations based on helping give directions or sharing simple small talk; however, in the same places the same accent may not be highly tolerated if the person is a paid employee who needs to offer service or advice.
In order to avoid some of the pitfalls associated with poor pronunciation it is important to hear as much of the target language (TL) as possible. This exposure to the TL can be from the teacher, from films or media clips, songs or audio clips, guest speakers and one’s peers. In general, realistic goals surrounding pronunciation are: the pronunciation should become smooth and natural
Intelligibility: the pronunciation should be understandable to the listeners
Communicative efficiency: the pronunciation should help convey the meaning intended by the speaker.
Pronunciation is an umbrella term that encompasses the interrelated areas of sounds, phonetic symbols, stress, intonation and rhythm.
Good pronunciation comes from a lot of technical knowledge on the part of the teacher about placement of the mouth, etc. Most teachers in North America, unfortunately, don’t have this knowledge and therefore tend to pass it off as being unimportant but in fact, as you progress in your fluency, pronunciation becomes more and more important. Language learning needs a lot of practice and both mechanical and meaningful practice lead to improved pronunciation. Only through practice will a skill become automatic and drill-like activities are not always considered interesting. Nevertheless perception practice is a good way to help learners distinguish between certain sounds.
The method emphasizes
The method emphasizes the autonomy of the learner; the teacher’s role is to monitor the students’ efforts, and the students are encouraged to have an active role in learning the language. Pronunciation is seen as fundamental; beginner courses start with pronunciation, and time is spent practicing it in most lessons, even with advanced students. The Silent Way uses a structural syllabus, and structures are constantly reviewed and recycled. The treatment of vocabulary is different from the conventional approach: time is spent using functional and versatile words but wider vocabulary is only introduced as needed. Acquiring a wide vocabulary is seen as something that students can to outside the class. Translation and rote repetition are avoided and the language is usually practiced in meaningful contexts. Evaluation is carried out by observation, and the teacher may never set a formal test.
The teacher uses silence for multiple purposes in the Silent Way. It is used to focus students’ attention, to elicit student responses, and to encourage them to correct their own errors. Lven though teachers are often silent, they are still active; for example, they use using hand gestures to help the students with their pronunciation and finger correction to help them with grammar. Teachers also encourage students to help their peers.
Silent Way teachers use specialized teaching materials. One of the hallmarks of the method is the use of Cuisenaire rods, which can be used for anything from introducing simple commands (“Take two red rods and give them to her.”) to representing objects such as clocks and floor plans. The method also makes use of color association to help teach pronunciation; there is a sound-color chart which is used to teach the language sounds, colored word charts which are used for work on sentences, and colored Fidel charts which are used to teach spelling.
Q. 2:- What is the importance of teaching prose and pronunciation skills of English? Explain the objectives of teaching prose and techniques for teaching pronunciation. (20)
Many people aspire to become teachers for different reasons. Some will have been inspired by one of their own teachers, while others may just have an innate desire to pass on knowledge and help children to develop into successful adults. Teaching is certainly a rewarding, yet highly challenging, career.
Rewarding – Helping children to learn and develop can be highly rewarding, and seeing that light bulb moment when something that you’ve taught has been understood by a student is a privilege. If you are passionate about your subject and can inspire that love in your students, you are likely to have a lot of good days. Sometimes, getting that love across takes a lot of practice, but practice makes perfect, so don’t despair.
If you are lucky enough to land a permanent teaching contract, your income will be stable with yearly rises as you move automatically up the main pay scale. This happens because the majority of teachers become even better with every year they work. After 6 years, you would need to prove that you meet certain standards to move onto the upper pay scale.
In the UK, teachers are automatically enrolled in the Teacher Pension Scheme with generous contributions from the Local Authority in which you teach. There has recently been a lot of unease with the pension scheme, as the government are looking to increase employee contributions and reduce pension payouts. However, teachers will hopefully still end up with a good sum upon retirement.
Schools, particularly secondary schools, can be large establishments with many members of staff who are generally supportive of each other. This support network can be vital when dealing with the stress of the job. Having someone to sound off to after an incident or to lend you a bit of extra support with any troublesome students is always helpful.
One of the biggest benefits of teaching in the UK is the 13 weeks of holiday you get each year. That sounds a lot to people in most jobs, but believe me, you will need it. Contradictory to the beliefs of many, you will spend a lot of your holiday time marking, planning lessons and filling in a lot of paperwork. It can, however, be nice to have holidays at the same time as your school-age children.
While outlining your resume for a teaching position, you must come up with one or more strong career objectives to support your education and work experience categories. Defining exactly what it is that you hope to achieve through a teaching career can be a challenge, but there are many noble and complementary objectives that may fit your future goals.
English as a Second Language (ESL) instructors teach reading and writing in English; however, teaching effective communication skills is also an important objective. Teaching students to carry out conversations about topics relating to everyday life will help them gain a better grasp of the English language, develop new relationships and have a better understanding of the world around them.
Provide a Positive Learning Environment
A teacher who truly cares about her students will have a positive effect on their learning. With many students coming from dysfunctional families, broken homes and busy households, an objective that defines the importance of creating and providing an environment in which children can be free to be learn and be creative is highly commendable. Teaching is all about students and their welfare, so using this goal as a main objective on your resume shows that you will always have your students’ best interests and welfare at heart while working in your new position.
Inspire Students and Instill a Love for Learning
Helping students realize what their strengths are and inspiring them to excel in their studies is a teaching resume objective that will potentially aid students for a lifetime. Instilling self-confidence in children and motivating and encouraging them is always an instructor’s primary goal. Developing students’ proficiencies for use in future projects and professions is what teaching is all about. As a prospective teacher, realizing the impact you may have on young lives is important from the very beginning of your career. The fruits of your diligent labor and personal attention to individual students will affect young minds for years to come.
Establish Guidelines and Routines
A great objective, especially for new teachers, is to establish guidelines and class curricula that can be used for future instructors and classes. Each time a teacher finishes with a class they will have new or revised methods of instruction, motivation or inspiration to improve or expand upon their teaching methods, and their teaching expertise will improve with each room of fresh new faces.
To Continue Learning and Growing
Teachers, as well as students, must continue their education to stay effective in their profession. Learning is not just for students. Keeping up to date with new trends, laws and skills in the classroom is vital for the effective instructor. To continue learning educational essentials and methods of classroom management is a resume objective that shows flexibility and an interest in ongoing training, classroom improvements and new teacher requirements. This will also make a teacher more marketable and easier to cross-train for positions in other departments.
All writing is art, and this maxim holds true for writing a teacher evaluation, as well. College students probably won’t realize that they are being asked if a teacher has met the goals and objectives for a course; they may simply feel flattered that they are being asked for their opinion. After all, most teacher evaluations are titled “Student Evaluation of Teaching Effectiveness” or “Student End-of-Course Survey.” But have no doubt about it: students’ responses will teem with information about whether a teacher has fulfilled the expectations for a course if an evaluation is written with the right quantitative and qualitative questions.
Ask the students to read a paragraph regarding an everyday topic and then have them discuss the ideas in teams of two or hold a group discussion. Your teaching objectives are to assist them to develop critical thinking skills, predict outcomes, understand cause and effect, make comparisons and enable them to hypothesize. For example, you might have them read a paragraph about surfing the Internet, then discuss the pros and cons or Internet use. Ask them to locate specific websites such as a good online dictionary and thesaurus.
Combine a conversational topic with a vocabulary lesson. Allow the students to choose a topic of interest to them from a list of six or seven general subjects and then provide them with corresponding nouns, verbs, adverbs and terms to use in a conversation regarding that topic. Choose universal topics such as food and ask the students to discuss cooking, their favorite food, or to role-play ordering food from a menu at a restaurant. Other suggested topics include the weather, sports, animals and love and relationships.
An effective and fun way to teach adult students English is to have them role-play various roles in the community in teams of two. Allow them to choose the characters they wish to play. Some suggestions include a police officer giving a parking ticket, buying a specific item at a store or a visit to the doctor or dentist. Have the students exchange roles so each gets to role-play a conversation in the community twice.
Give small groups of students a specific scenario involving a problem they must solve together. One task could be to make a list of items they would need for survival, if lost in the woods. Once they have made a list, they will need to explain how to use the items to survive or successfully make it out of the woods.
One cause for assessment anxiety is confusion about what assessment means and about its purpose. In the minds of many community members and parents, assessment means test—especially a high-stakes state test. For students, assessment often is perceived as a means of competing with classmates for the highest grade instead of as a mile marker on the journey to increased knowledge and understanding.
All assessments are created to serve some purpose, whether to diagnose a learning disability, to identify a student who needs remediation, or to determine whether a school district has met its achievement goals. However, no one assessment serves all of these purposes well. Standardized, summative assessments—those high-stakes tests—are designed to provide information on the performance of districts and schools so resources and support can be well targeted. But for classroom teachers, that information is incomplete. The results might tell teachers which students in their classes have not mastered a reading comprehension objective, but they do not tell what kind of instruction those students need to master the objective or what errors in thinking led to the incorrect answers. To get that kind of information, teachers need the results provided by the consistent use of classroom-based formative assessments.
Q 3:- Describe the objectives of teaching poetry. How can we teach poetry effectively and can test the learning of poetry? (20)
A theme is not simply a topic that a poet chooses to write about. A theme also includes what a poet thinks or feels about the subject. Poetry themes are as varied as the experiences that make up human life. Themes like life and death, love, loneliness and nature occur often in poetry; however, there is no limitation on what is an appropriate subject for a poem.
Love and Nature
Whether a poet is currently in love with someone or has lost her love, the simple act of loving occurs again and again in poetry. Another common theme is nature, which includes what the poet thinks or feels about experiencing the natural environment or about surviving a natural disaster. How a poet feels about important life events such as illness, loneliness or grieving the death of a loved one arises often as a theme in poetry.
Celebrations and Devotion
A poet’s insights about the experience of a holiday or celebration are conventional themes found in poetry. Holiday-themed poetry often appears in greeting cards or might be written in advance of the event as a gift. Poetry with a devotional theme revolves around a poet’s experience with the divine and can also appear in the form of a prayer. Mythology is yet another theme found in conventional poetry. The journey of a hero on an adventure is the major theme in epic poetry.
Since some themes show up so often, common themes can become a cliche. The purpose of a poem is to share an extraordinary insight the poet has. This aim will not be accomplished, however, if a reader has heard a love poem or a lament so many times that the idea of reading another one drives him away. The way to avoid cliche in poetry is to write concretely from an unusual perspective that jolts the reader into reading the poem to the end.
Unconventional themes can provide a relief from over-used subject matter. Poems describing states of consciousness and politics occur with less frequency and offer a challenge to the poet to avoid abstract language, which can make a poem banal. Poems describing the horrors of war and the effect it has on people and the landscape is a less familiar theme in poetry. Another unconventional theme in poetry is curiosity about the future.
Music is the first essential of poetry, which is verbal music. The skill full poet varies this music to suit his subject so that the sound of the lines helps us to understand their meanings clearly.
Vision is the second essential of poetry. A great poet is seen. The poet has a great power of seeing and feeling things around him. In many places where there is a shy, and subtle beauty that most of us would never see, a poet’s eye discovers it and his voice makes it plain to us. All true poetry is the product of vision of imagination.
We mean by imagery the suggestion of vivid mental picture of image, by the skilful of use of words. It is due to the poet’s gift imagination, which makes him talk in picture.
Emotion is the essential of poetry; there must be the expressions of deep feeling whether of love or hate, of joy or pain, of admiration or contempt etc.
Refinement is essential that poetry should be refined in thought and language also that it should have a refining influence upon the mind of reader. The spirit of great poet’s work is optimistic rather than pessimistic. Harmony:
The poet secures harmony of thought and expression in a poem just as a painter must secure harmony of form and color.
Poetry as Music:
Verbal music does not depend only on the musical sounds of the word but also on the rhythm. The music of poetry is produced by combination of lovely rhythm with sweet sounding words. To consider the way in which the poet obtain some of their musical effects.
How can teach effectively:
The teacher can dramatize a poem in the classroom. It will create interest in the learners and make poetry come alive. For example, there are three characters in the poem. The son, the father and the mother. He wants to watch the TV, but his parents do not allow him to do so. A child debates watching TV with his parents.
Categories of rhyme
Rhyming is not always present in poetry as it comes and goes with literary fashion. When it is present, it falls into three distinct types. Rhyming can depend on similarity of sound, relation to cadence, or position in the line or stanza. Being able to discern these differences in rhyming poetry will help you better understand the style and the intent of the writer. Words rhyming together give a musical sound that is why rhyme is so much used in poetry. Vowel and consonant sounds contains onomatopoeia, Alliteration, Repetition also. In repetition words, phrase, sentence and refrain are important.
What comes to most people’s minds when they hear the word “rhyme” is similarity in sounds: fat/cat, fox/socks, sat/hat, and so on. This is known as “rhyme by nature of similarity.” Often it is referred to as a full rhyme, a “true” rhyme or a perfect rhyme. This sort of rhyming includes consonant rhyming as well, which pairs similar consonants with different vowels as in limp/lump or bit/bet. Although writing poetry with this type of obvious rhyme fell out of style in the 19th Century, it is still prevalent in today’s children’s literature and is also popular in Hip Hop, Rap and often in the chorus lyrics of popular songs. Traditional rhyming poetry is also quite popular with jumping rope as the participants recite the poetry in time with the rope’s movements.
Rhymes in Stress Patterns
Rhyming can also occur in poetry not only by simple sounds and words, but in words that are stressed in the same manner. Take, for example, flying/dying, words that have the same number of syllables and construction. The same goes for two- or three-syllable words such as generate/venerate and captions/functions. The manner in which the words are pronounced as well as their sounds are remarkably similar.
Rhymes by Position
Position in a line is very important when it comes to rhyming. Rhyming that occurs by position includes the traditional end rhyme in which the last word to every line contains a matching sound. Initial rhymes are those rhymes or alliterations that occur at the beginning of a sentence. These types of rhymes do not have any rhymes in the center of the line or on the end. In contrast, a medial rhyme is a rhyme that occurs at the middle of the sentence and will rhyme with a word at the end of the sentence. This sort of rhyme can also happen in various places in the same stanza and still count as a rhyme by position.
Verbal music out of similar sounds
Rhyming activities and games are popular for young children in the kindergarten age group. Simple rhymes are a great way to teach kids. Rhyming teaches phonics and promotes literacy. Rhyming games can also teach the alphabet and counting. Rhyming activities can come in a number of different formats including worksheets, which stress cognitive recognition through similar phonetic sounds, and out loud games, which do so verbally.
On the Go Rhyming
One kind of rhyming game is “On the Go Rhyming.” This is a game that :s great while on a trip. The adult picks something out they see and says it out loud •followed by another word and then ask if the two words rhyme. They couple this with another word. For example, the adult would say, “Car, far. Do these two words rhyme?
Silly Nursery Rhymes
“Silly Nursery Rhymes” is another fun verbal rhyming game. Read a nursery rhyme with a child. Then re-read it but substitute rhyming words into the nursery that don’t belong in it. For example, “Hickory-dickory-dock, the mouse ran up the sock.” Ask the kindergartener what is wrong with the rhyme and invite them to make up their own replacement words.
One Potato, Two Potatoes
Rhyming songs are also a great activity for help learn to rhyme as well as teaching other skills. A rhyming song that teaches counting is “One Potato, Two Potato.” The lyrics are:
• One potato, two potato,
• Three potato, four,
• Five potato, six potato,
Seven potato, more!
A rhyming song that kindergartners can sing that focuses more on rhyming than counting is “Fish.” The Fish Song lyrics are:
• Pretty little goldfish
• One, two, three, four, five,
• I caught a fish alive. ▪ Six, seven, eight, nine, ten,
• I let him go again!
• Why did I let him go? Because he bit my finger so. Which finger did he bite?
• The little one on the right.
Rhyming worksheets are another great way to teach kids rhyming. There are many different formats these can take, but most involve the child recognizing pictures of two objects that rhyme. For example, make two columns of objects that rhyme, but are jumbled up. Have the child draw lines from the pictures in one column to the picture in the second that rhymes with it. There are numerous online resources that provide printable worksheets for teaching rhymes.
Q. 4 What are the problems of English composition in Pakistan? Enumerate some basic rules and principles for writing correct English. (20)
It is indispensable in our daily life to live without communication. People need to talk teach other to convey their thoughts and to execute the daily life works. We can say that we need communication to move further in our life. It is clearly observed that even the people who are not bestowed with the ability to speak, they need communication, and they have their own ways to express their thoughts. In short, the significance of communication cannot be ignored at all. In case of people who have been gifted with the ability to talk, communication is much easier. But here the question rises that it is really about only communication. If so, then what is the significance of verbal communication when the deaf and dumb people can do it as well? Here it is important to understand the role of pronunciation in communication which makes the difference. Pronunciation is an aspect of verbal communication which makes it more effective and attractive. Therefore, the significance of pronunciation becomes highly considerable in the process of verbal communication. Speakers of a particular language have a very depend strong impact of the sounds of the alphabet on their pronunciation. There are certain sounds which every language possesses. Most of the sounds which a language has seem to be similar, but they are not pronounced in the exact manner. There are certain differences in pronunciation. Therefore, when a person speaks any non-native language, he has to face certain sound difficulties. For example, the Japanese do not have the sound of ‘r’ in their language. Therefore they have to use an alternative sound available in their language according to their convenience. While pronouncing the sound ‘r’, they pronounce ‘I’ sound. Similarly, the Arabic language does not have ‘p’ sound and they replace it with ‘b’ sound. But there are many other factors present which affect the mispronunciation of sounds
Written communication permeates our lives, so the ability to communicate through writing is essential in the academic world, professional environment and everyday life. Students write papers and essays from elementary school through graduate school. Business professionals write reports, emails and memos regularly, if not daily. Nearly everyone engages in written communication for personal reasons, whether it’s emailing a long-distance family member or chatting with friends on social networking sites. Being an effective writer makes these communications more productive.
Effective communicators know how to write concisely. They do not use needless words just to fill space. They write thoughtfully, selecting words carefully to ensure they convey their message in as few words as they can. Strong writing isn’t about using big words or lots of words. Instead, it is about keeping writing as brief and clear as possible. In doing so, readers will better understand the message, making the written document more effective.
Effective written communication could mean the difference when you’re trying to land your dream job; prevent your promotion after you land the job; or prohibit your success in the academic world. To break down barriers in written communication, don’t rush when writing because writing too quickly often leads to errors that cause misunderstandings. Avoid misunderstandings by reviewing your writing before you submit it. Clear written communication is an important aspect in any business or academic correspondence.
The sounds of English and Urdu are certainly different from each other. The Pakistani students mix them up and try to shape their speech organs according to sounds of Urdu while pronouncing English sounds which distorts it.
It is a craze to speak fluently among Pakistani students. While attempting fluency misspeaking skill, they become unconscious of the rules of connected speech and make mistakes in pronunciation unwittingly.
Incorrect grammar or spelling errors may seem a trivial detail in correspondence such as an e-mail, but lazy writing can distract the reader from the point you are trying to make. While it’s unavoidable to make an error on occasion, when your text is full of them, negative consequences such as job loss or course failure can follow. Minor errors can indicate that you are uneducated or careless. For example, avoid common spelling mistakes, including using “to” instead of “too,” and “loose” instead of “lose” when referring to something that’s lost. Know when to use “their,” “there” and “they’re,” for instance. Always remember to spell-check your work, and, if possible, find someone to edit your work before you submit it.
Topic of the Correspondence
Writers often include useless information instead of focusing on the target, but the message is communicated more easily by leading with the topic of the discussion. Follow the text by ‘ flails about the topic. You can clearly communicate any additional information by using the word “also” or the phrase “I should also note.” Separate your writing into paragraphs when writing about side topics. By breaking your text into chunks, the reader can more easily follow the flow of your discussion.
Basic principles and rules for good writing
Any literate person is able to sit down and write something, but the effort is useless without knowing the components of good writing. Writing is more than putting words on a page. Your work needs to speak to your target audience in a compelling way that prompts them to keep reading and teaches them something.
Written communication is generally most effective when it follows an elementary sentence structure. The basic subject-verb-object sentence structure that writers first learn in elementary school works just as well in doctoral dissertations and business reports. This structure eliminates confusion and easily walks the reader through the sentence. Ultimately, this improves the effectiveness of the communication and the message. Awkwardly structured sentences run the risk of misplaced modifiers and other grammatical errors that weaken or obscure meaning.
Tone can be one of the most difficult things to accurately convey in a written piece of communication. Effective communicators have the ability to use the right tone in their documents. For example, a cover letter should have an authoritative yet persuasive tone. An encouraging email to a friend should be positive and uplifting. Strong writers are able to use the correct language to convey the tone of the message they want to transmit to their readers.
Effective communications are also well focused. Writers do not stray from the topic or go off on tangents. Often, a thesis statement, for academic papers in particular, helps writers keep their focus. Their arguments have to relate directly to the thesis, helping keep the paper on track. In non-academic works, writers can use a similar tactic to maintain focus. Think of the overall goal of the work and ensure that every sentence you include helps move readers toward that goal. ‘
A well-written paper must have a direct purpose to keep the reader tuned in. Determine what information you want the reader to take away from your writing. Create your paper keeping that direct purpose in mind the whole time, incorporating it into every section. Write using clear, decisive wording so your reader doesn’t start to second-guess your message. Avoid words such as “May” or “might” since they make it sound like you aren’t sure of yourself, stripping some of the direct impact from your work.
When you make a claim while writing something, provide information to espouse your point. Avoid unsupported statements, opinions or speculation that will otherwise make your reader stumble while reading. When using numbers and statistics, give exact numbers and back up your statement with fact. For example, saying something like “thousands of people die every day due to squirrel attacks” is an interesting assertion, but you must provide proof to add credibility to your statement. Government agencies, colleges and reputable organizations offer solid references to your work.
Appropriate Language and Grammar
Know your target audience thoroughly, and tailor your writing to your audience. When your audience reviews the work, it must come off as easy to understand, compelling to read and informative. For example, when writing a children’s story, use small words suitable for your audience and themes that will capture the children’s attention. If you write a children’s book as thick as a medical text and just as confusing, no child will want to sit down and read it. Grammar also plays a big part in the writing. Improper use of words and punctuation can turn a reader off your writing.
Stale writing that provides simple facts without any personality grows old quickly. While you must stick to the facts, injecting a little of your personality into your writing won’t hurt. This gives your work a personable touch that your readers can identify with and appreciate. Expressing your ideas from a personal point of view helps your readers view a subject in a light they didn’t consider before as well. Adding a creative aspect to your writing also helps separate it from other works, which is refreshing to readers.
Written communication can be more effective than a spoken conversation, because you have time to think about what you are writing. You can employ several techniques to make the most of that extra time and enhance your written pieces. If you apply these writing techniques consistently, your pieces are more likely to be read, and the reader will understand exactly what you are trying to convey.
Written communication’s biggest advantage is that it is clearer than a verbal conversation. When one person is listening to another, he might miss part of what is said or misinterpret it. Written communication lays out the words, which means it is critical to choose the right vocabulary and be ‘clear in what you say. Do not be vague; write specifically what you mean, and give examples if appropriate. Conclude with action words that spell out the response you are seeking, whether it is an answer to a specific question, an action on the reader’s part or something else. Keep the piece as objective as possible rather than interjecting emotion that could confuse the reader or make him defensive.
Time is a valuable commodity for just about everyone. Keep the piece itself short, and use concise sentences and brief paragraphs that are written in the active voice. If you write a long communication piece and riddle it with passive sentences, the reader may not get through all of it, because she does not have enough time. She may even toss it to the side and not read it at all. Your work is much more likely to be read immediately and thoroughly if you make it short and to the point. This brevity also shows respect for your reader’s time, which will give her a better overall impression of you.
Thoroughly proofread any written communication piece before you send it out. Check it for incorrect grammar, misspellings, use of the passive voice and other mechanical flaws. Errors can create a bad impression, so it is vitally important that your written communication be error-free. Pay attention to the tone, too, and make sure the piece does not contain anything that the reader may accidentally misinterpret.
Consider your audience, and aim your communication piece appropriately. Business writing should have a formal tone. When you are writing to a friend, use a more conversational tone and even interject some humor. If you are not sure whether a written piece has the right tone, read it out loud. This makes it easier to tell how it will come across to the reader, and it is also a good way to catch mistakes you might have missed.
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