Tag Archives: academic writing

5 Free Resources for Teaching Punctuation

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

In today’s blog, I will describe five online resources that you can use to help your students learn more about the use of punctuation marks in their writing. 1. Guide to Grammar and Writing This resource can be useful for preparing your … Continue reading

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In Defense of My Defense of the 5-Paragraph Essay

Robert Sheppard
Rob Sheppard

I posted last month on what I see to be the value of the five-paragraph essay. Though I was responding to another author’s post, I thought I was making a fairly innocuous and common-sense point: basically, don’t throw the baby … Continue reading

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Distinguishing Facts From Opinions: 3 Activities

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

Being able to distinguish facts from opinions is an important skill not only for critical reading, but also for developing a strong argument. In the past few weeks, I have been teaching an argumentative essay in my writing class, and … Continue reading

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Teaching Second Conditionals Through Absurd Sentences

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

The second conditional (e.g., If I were, I would…) often causes difficulties even for advanced English learners. This fun and interactive activity will help learners practice this structure. The first part of the activity gives learners a chance to interact … Continue reading

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5 Ways to Make the Most of Written Feedback

Nathan Hall
Nathan Hall

Do you remember getting papers back from your English or composition teachers that were covered in red ink? Did you take the time to decode each individual marking, consider every error, and diligently redraft your paper until it was flawless? … Continue reading

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Google Docs for Collaborative Writing Activities

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

Last week, I was preparing a lesson plan for my composition class on how to write a research report. I found a nice description on how to organize and write a research report in one of the textbooks on technical … Continue reading

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Tutoring ESL Writers: 8 Strategies

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

Tutoring second language writers has a lot in common with teaching writing in the classroom. However, there are a number of things to keep in mind when working with students one-on-one. Here is a list of strategies that I learned from … Continue reading

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15 Academic Vocabulary Resources

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

“When I write in English, I can’t express myself as well as I do in Spanish/Korean/Japanese.” Most writing instructors hear this statement at least once during their teaching career. A lack of vocabulary is indeed one of the most challenging … Continue reading

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Analyzing Rhetorical Situations: Maps, Travel Guides, Bus Schedules…

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

Today I’d like to share a simple activity that can help students better understand the concept of genre as well as the other components of rhetorical situation (e.g., purpose, audience, tone, and medium). This activity requires minimum preparation, and the … Continue reading

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Audience Awareness: An Interactive Group Activity

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

This is yet another interactive activity that may help learners better understand the concept of audience (readers), the importance of the writer’s background knowledge about their audience, as well as the importance of writer-reader relationships. For this activity, you will need … Continue reading

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