Writing a for and against composition Why do we do it? 1. End of year tests 2. Important life skill 3. Entrance requirement for studying abroad 4. Matriculation exam PROBLEMS (that students have when writing a for and against composition) 1. Having something to say You will be able to say more if you do the brainstorm activity – group or individual level FIRST STEP Eg. Is it better to be a vegetarian or not FOR AGAINST - healthier food - people need meet to survive - does not contain fats - children should eat meat - you don't have to kill animals - meet is delicious - cholesterol - you feel better - inhuman conditions on farms, sick animals - your stomach is full - doctors agree with this kind of diet - vegetarians look pale On a piece of paper write two columns (for and against) and write as more ideas as you can. During the process of brainstorming activity, accept absolutely everything – easier to remove stuff than to add it! Every idea that comes to your mind is OK on this level. Later you can cross it or it can lead you to something interesting. SECOND STEP Now think and organize ideas in a rational order Is there overlapping? (healthier / vegetarians do not have some diseases / doctors agree - all these ideas mean the same, belong to the same group; or: meet is delicious, you feel better) Get 3 key ideas for both sides. Pick three best arguments that could be supported by some proof. THIRD STEP Organize these key ideas. First of all, you need to say something general about your topic in the beginning. Eg. In the last few decades vegetarians, or avoiding eating meat, has become more and more popular. Why do people tend to change thousands of years old habits? First of all, more and more people think that it is not healthy to eat fats…. …… Secondly…. …… However, it seems that the main reason why people become vegans or vegetarians is that they don't want to harm or kill animals. They feel that we don't have to kill some living being to survive. On the other hand, people need meet to survive… In my opinon, …. Your text must be visually organized as well. Introduction, 3 points for, and 3 against and your opinion must be clearly visible without reading. Your paragraphs must be separated. 2. Danger of becoming illogical Your ideas must flow naturally from one to another. You must use linking words to link next paragraph with the previous one. Your last argument must be the strongest so you must save the most important argument for the end, because you will paraphrase the same idea in your opinion. 3. Having enough to write about Supporting argument – give examples. Case without evidence is nothing. Eg. It is medically proved that high cholesterol influences heart diseases. Be specific! Back up your arguments with ideas. Next question: Where are the main arguments? Paragraphs – is it difficult to read, to follow main ideas (5-6 main ideas). Linking devices Firstly, secondly, finally, in the end Transition signals: On the other hand, However (opposite) They are crucial because you can determine what is important and what isn’t. GRADING What do I expect from 5 1. Task completion 2. Organization (is it easy to read, linking words, paragraphs) 3. Accuracy (are mistakes acceptable, not serious) 4. Range (is it too simple, some pupils never take risks, complicated structures...) 4 – bit of excellent, but... 2 – quite a few mistakes, but communication is a problem, message is still clear! Example of a composition: _____________________ _________________________ _________________________ __________________________ ____________________________ ________________________ __________________________ ____________________________ _________________ __________________________ ____________________________ ________________________ __________________________ ____________________________ ________________________ __________________________ ____________________________ ________________________ Heading Introduction Firstly… (first argument - against) Secondly… (second argument - against) On the other side / However (first argument - for) Moreover… (third argument - for) To conclude (Conclusion) In my opinion (your opinion, which should be the same as the last, strongest argument, third - for). In the above example (drawing), you can see the heading and separated paragraphs. Your teacher can give you a mark from organization almost without reading. When a teacher looks at the writing, and reads the first words of the paragraphs he/she can be able to grade your organization (of course, partly, but your mark can be lower because of this visual aspect). Time and number of words: 45 minutes for 150-200 words – 10 minutes for plan.