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THE STUDENT GUIDE TO
WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
In The English Classroom
THE STUDENT GUIDE TO
WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
In The English Classroom
Copyright © Ticking Mind 2017
All rights reserved.
...
THE STUDENT GUIDE TO
WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
In The English Classroom
A Ticking Mind Publication
CONTENTS
WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES ....................................... 1
• Basic Introductory First Sentence
• M...
WRITING NON-FICTION SENTENCES ...........................................99
• Writing biographical and autobiographical se...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
1
WRITING TEXT
RESPONSE SENTENCES
Writing a text response is a daunting task, but one that...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
2
Basic introductory first sentence
Often, the most difficult part of beginn...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
3
In all of these examples, there are some common elements.
ELEMENT EXAMPLE
1. The writer ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
4
It’s time for you to give it a go
In your workbook, write an introductory ...
Punctuation
tip:
Commas are used to separate extra information
from the main part of a sentence in order to
make the sente...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
6
More detailed introductory statements
Once you have become adept at the ba...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
7
It’s time for you to give it a go
In your workbook, write an introductory sentence with ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
8
It’s time for you to give it a go
In your workbook, write an introductory ...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
9
Sentences within introductions
Once you’ve practised your opening sentence a few times, ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
10
It’s time for you to give it a go
The table below offers suggestions abou...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
11
Sentences that refer to the text &
its author in a variety of ways
A crucial part of ma...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
12
Topic sentences
The first thing that you need to write in a body paragraph...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
13
Starting your topic sentence is fairly straightforward.
Have a go starting a topic sent...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
14
It’s time for you to give it a go
Have a go at finishing your topic senten...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
15
Topic sentences can also begin with prepositional phrases. These phrases can add import...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
16
Body paragraph sentences
with basic verbs and detailed noun groups
Often,...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
17
There are two ways we can improve sentences with these frequently used verbs :
1. Delet...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
18
It’s time for you to give it a go
All of these words and phrases in the t...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
19
Body paragraph sentences with multiple verbs
One of the important elements of analytica...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
20
Effective text response sentences will always have a regular verb in them...
Punctuation
tips:
• Commas are used to separate items on a list
where there is no ‘and’. When we use multiple
verbs in a s...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
22
Body paragraph sentences that use evidence
In your body paragraphs, you w...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
23
It’s time for you to give it a go
The table below offers a range of ways examples can b...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
24
Inserting and analysing quotes in your body
paragraphs
There are two impo...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
25
The first example is not a very good one, because the student has not demonstrated an
ab...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
26
It’s time for you to give it a go
Use the words in the table below to ins...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
27
Analysis of quotes
In all of the examples we’ve used so far, the analysis of the quote ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
28
It’s time for you to give it a go
Use the above examples as models and th...
Punctuation
tip:
You must put quotation marks around
your quotes.
Your teacher might prefer that you use double
quotation ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
30
Body paragraph sentences that begin
in a variety of ways
A good body para...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
31
It’s time for you to give it a go
The table below provides suggestions about different ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
32
Concluding statements
Conclusions don’t simply repeat your introduction. ...
WRITING
TEXT RESPONSE
SENTENCES
33
It’s time for you to give it a go
The table on the following page lists different words...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
34
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
35
Writing poetry
analysis sentences
Many students groan at the idea of poetry – it’s fu...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
36
Writing introductions
Writing about the type of poem
Your teacher will pr...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
37
Poem
type Form Purpose
Ballad Several stanzas long, it usually has
four lines per sta...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
38
Writing introductory sentences
Knowing what kind of poem you are looking ...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
39
As with the first sentence of a text response, the introductory sentence of a poetry
a...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
40
Writing sentences about more than one poem
Sometimes you will be analysin...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
41
Words
to group
the poets Verb Adjectives
Idea
Nouns Verb 2
Many poets…
Countless
writ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
42
A GROUP OF POEMS BY THE SAME POET
When grouping poems by a single writer ...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
43
It’s time for you to give it a go
Combine a phrase or word from each of the columns b...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
44
Sentences to analyse aspects of poetry
USING THE NAMES OF TECHNIQUES IN S...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
45
Enjambment A sentence flows from
one stanza to another (or,
sometimes, from one line t...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
46
Below are two examples of sentences analysing the use of techniques in a ...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
47
These examples demonstrate how verbs can be used in different forms. ‘Highlights’, ‘t...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
48
Writing about similes and metaphors
Similes and metaphors or comparisons ...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
49
Now it’s your turn
Identify a simile, metaphor, comparison or contrast in a poem. Use...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
50
Using adjectives when writing in detail
about poetry
We typically think a...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
51
It’s your turn
Look in the table below to find a series of adjectives that might help ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
52
2. ADJECTIVES TO DESCRIBE IMAGES
Poems are ‘word pictures’ that aim to cr...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
53
Now it’s your turn
Identify a quote from a poem that creates an image. Write a senten...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
54
Noun phrases
When you are writing about poetry, you will often want to be...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
55
Now it’s your turn
Try using the noun phrases below to help you build longer noun phr...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
56
Adverbs and prepositions for describing
when in a poem
Whenever you are p...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
57
Analysing patterns in poetry
In poetry, more than any other kind of text, there are m...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
58
Inserting quotes and analysing evidence
Like any text response writing, y...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
59
At other times, you might want to insert two quotes to analyse a connection between
d...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
60
However, sometimes you will want to insert a longer quote, possibly even ...
GRAMMAR
HABITS
61
Punctuation
tip:
Colons can be used to introduce explanations
or evidence. It is the punctuation equival...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
62
Sentences about what a poet thinks or believes
One of your primary jobs i...
Writing
Poetry Analysis
Sentences
63
Now it’s your turn
Using the words in the table below, analyse the message of a part ...
Writing a
Persuasive Piece
There are many different forms a persuasive piece can take.
They can be letters, editorials, op...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
66
Developing a Contention
All persuasive writing must have a clear contenti...
67Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Engaging the audience through pronouns
Good persuasive writing relies upon you engaging your ...
Punctuation
tip:
One of the important things to notice
about pronouns is that they DO NOT have
any possessive apostrophes ...
69Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
How will pronouns improve your writing?
Look at the following three sentences:
Technology all...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
70
Here are some examples of persuasive sentences which use first, second and...
71Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Below are some common and effective phrases featuring pronouns which show either
that it’s po...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
72
Labelling the issue with positive
and negative nouns
In persuasive writin...
73Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
It’s time for you to give it a go
Have a practice using these nouns to label your own issue:
...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
74
Using Adjectives
Of course, these nouns can be even more powerful if you ...
75Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
It’s time for you to give it a go
Select positive or negative adjectives to describe the noun...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
76
Positive Negative
effort of people
brave
courageous
conscientious
determi...
Punctuation
tip:
Commas are used to separate items on a list.
If you use three adjectives in a row, you will
need to separ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
78
Tricolons (the rule of three)
And why stop at just one adjective? When tr...
79Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Comparative and Superlative Adjectives
You can add extra impact by experimenting with compara...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
80
These are some persuasive adjectives and their comparative and superlativ...
81Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Persuasive help and hurt verbs
Just as adjectives can be used to persuasively label something...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
82
Verbs can be made even more powerful by combining them with adverbs - par...
83Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Double-pronged sentences
Often, persuasive writers will wish to show their readers that there...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
84
It’s time for you to give it a go
Use the individual conjunctions and the...
85Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
It’s time for you to give it a go
Pick at least one cause or effect verb from the table below...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
86
Using adverbs to create generalisations
One of the very basic persuasive ...
87Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
It’s time for you to give it a go
Write one sentence using either a regular or irregular adve...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
88
Writing about evidence
Evidence is a key part of any persuasive piece. Ho...
89Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Now it’s your turn
Introduce a statistic on a topic you’re writing about by using a word or p...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
90
2. CONVINCING AN AUDIENCE THAT EVIDENCE SHOWS US
SOMETHING IMPORTANT
Evid...
91Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
In the chart below is a range of parts of speech that you can use to establish the effect
of ...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
92
Building your piece to
a persuasive conclusion
Linking phrases
Let’s be c...
93Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
It’s time for you to give it a go
Use one phrase from each of the sections in the table below...
THE STUDENT GUIDE
TO WRITING BETTER
SENTENCES
94
Contrasting statements
A simple and important strategy in persuasive writ...
95Writing a
Persuasive
Piece
Help and hurt verbs can also be used effectively to create contrasting statements.
You can us...
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview
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'The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom' is a comprehensive and practical manual for students on how to write effective sentences for a variety of text types. The guide introduces students to grammar - different parts of speech - in the context of text response, poetry analysis, persuasive, creative, comparative and non-fiction writing.

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The Student Guide To Writing Better Sentences In The English Classroom 2017 Preview

  1. 1. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES In The English Classroom
  2. 2. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES In The English Classroom Copyright © Ticking Mind 2017 All rights reserved. Except under the conditions described in the Copyright Act 1968 of Australia and subsequent amendments, no part of this publications may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the copyright owner. First Published 2016 by: Ticking Mind Publications, Northcote. ISBN 978-0-9944258-2-9
  3. 3. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES In The English Classroom A Ticking Mind Publication
  4. 4. CONTENTS WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES ....................................... 1 • Basic Introductory First Sentence • More Detailed Introductory Statements • Sentences Within Introductions • Sentences Which Refer To The Text and its Author in a Variety of Ways • Topic Sentences • Body Paragraph Sentences • Concluding Statements Writing Persuasive sentences.............................................. 65 • Developing a contention • Engaging the audience through pronouns • Labelling the issue with positive and negative nouns • Using Adjectives • Tricolons (the rule of three) • Comparative and Superlative Adjectives • Double-pronged sentences • Cause and Effect verbs • Using adverbs to create generalisations • Writing about evidence • Linking phrases • Concluding phrases Writing poetry analysis sentences...............................35 • Writing introductions • Writing body paragraphs • Topic sentences • Sentences to analyse aspects of poetry • Writing about similes and metaphors • Using adjectives when writing in detail about poetry • Noun phrases • Adverbs and prepositions for describing when in a poem • Analysing patterns in poetry • Inserting quotes and analysing evidence • Sentences about what a poet thinks or believes chapter 3 chapter 2 chapter 1
  5. 5. WRITING NON-FICTION SENTENCES ...........................................99 • Writing biographical and autobiographical sentences • Writing film and novel review sentences • Writing news report sentences Writing language analysis sentences..................... 151 • Introducing the contention • Writing creative sentences • Continuing your introduction • Introducing the reader • Describing Tone • Writing the body of a language analysis • Introducing examples • Using prepositions to support your observations • Introducing other examples and explanations • Writing Conclusions for a Language Analysis Writing creative sentences............................................. 189 • Choosing your ‘voice’ • Alternating names and pronouns in 3rd person stories • Writing a Narrative • Using verbs effectively • Putting Description into Writing • Changing the position of adjectives • Adjectives belonging to a character • Using similes in an interesting way • Adverbs • Prepositions for detail • Sentence length • Marking the passage of time • Putting Speech into Writing Writing comparative sentences ....................................... 171 • Writing about genre • Body Paragraphs • Writing more descriptively • Writing Transition Sentences • Writing About Both Texts In The Same Sentence • Writing Conclusions chapter 4 chapter 5 chapter 6 chapter 7
  6. 6. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 1 WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES Writing a text response is a daunting task, but one that you will be asked to do several times over the course of the year in any English class. Many students have mastered the basic structure of an essay and are able to construct the essay overall, but are not able to improve their writing. However, this is the most important part of becoming better in English. Fortunately, there are a few phrases and words which will help you improve your writing style enormously. This chapter is full of them. chapter1
  7. 7. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 2 Basic introductory first sentence Often, the most difficult part of beginning writing is putting pen to paper - it can be very difficult to know where to begin and what to write. The good news is that once you have the first sentence down, it’s usually much easier to keep going. The advice of this book is for you to write down a first sentence that gives your reader/ teacher/examiner some overall information about the text you are analysing. Not boring information about when the novel was published, or who performed the first play, or the actors in the film (anyone can find that sort of information with a quick Google search), but a quick 20-second analysis of what the whole text is aiming to do. Let’s look at some examples: Throughout Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare explores the dangerous nature of love. OR In To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee depicts the reality of prejudice in a small town. OR From the outset of Gattaca, Andrew Niccol scrutinises how genetics determines people’s identity.
  8. 8. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 3 In all of these examples, there are some common elements. ELEMENT EXAMPLE 1. The writer begins each sentence with a preposition or prepositional phrase. This shows where or what time they are writing about Throughout… In… From the outset of… 2. The writer then identifies the text title (indicating that they are writing about the whole text) …Romeo and Juliet, ….To Kill A Mockingbird, …Gattaca, 3. The writer refers to the author and follows this name with an analytical verb …Shakespeare explores… …Harper Lee depicts… …Andrew Niccol scrutinises… 4. Finally, the writer uses an idea noun to give an indication of what the ‘big idea’ of the text is …the dangerous nature of love. …the reality of prejudice in a small town. …how genetics determines people's identity.
  9. 9. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 4 It’s time for you to give it a go In your workbook, write an introductory sentence using the table below to help you. Prepositional phrase Analytical verb Basic idea nouns Throughout..., In..., From the start of..., From its outset,... At its heart,... Fundamentally,... challenges scrutinises explores highlights questions transforms exposes focuses reveals manipulates speculates discusses advocates contrasts epitomises growing up discovery identity survival loss friendship family justice nature independence happiness value loyalty love hate conflict courage defeat bravery life lives hope power humanity prejudice oppression conscience the past being a hero
  10. 10. Punctuation tip: Commas are used to separate extra information from the main part of a sentence in order to make the sentence clearer. Starting a sentence with a preposition means you’re adding extra information to the beginning of a statement, so you need to put a comma at the end of this extra information to separate it from the rest of the sentence: • Throughout Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare explores the dangerous nature of love. • In To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout discovers the nature of prejudice in the town she lives in. • From its outset, Gattaca scrutinises how genetics determine the ways nearly all people live.
  11. 11. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 6 More detailed introductory statements Once you have become adept at the basic introductory statement, you could try extending your opening sentence like this: Throughout Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare explores the dangerous nature of love and how it can be a force of destruction. OR In To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee depicts the reality of prejudice in a small town that accepts division and hatred within its community as normal. OR From the outset of Gattaca, Andrew Niccol scrutinises how genetics determines people’s identity, except for those people brave enough to challenge the conventions of society. All of these sentences have been extended by the writer using an extra information word (or conjunction) to join two noun phrases. Writing ‘and’ in a sentence is perhaps the simplest and most powerful way to write more analytically about a text because it indicates there is not just one thing to say. One important element of writing ‘and’ is to find different ways of saying it. On the next page is a handy list of extra information words you can use in your introductory statements.
  12. 12. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 7 It’s time for you to give it a go In your workbook, write an introductory sentence with more detail using the table below to help you. Basic Connecting Words (Ways of saying ‘and’, ‘but’ or ‘because’) Conjunctions Conjunction phrases Relative pronouns and but yet or because and also but also yet also not only…but also both…and in addition to together with as well as in conjunction with on top of except for despite the which who that Another way of adding detail to your introductory statements is by using phrases that allow you to describe the ideas of a text or its setting in a more specific and interesting way. In the example below, ‘world in which’ is phrase that allows the writer to describe the setting and issues of Gattaca in more detail. It’s also a phrase that could be applied to many texts. From the outset of Gattaca, Andrew Niccol scrutinises a world in which genetic engineering determines every aspect of people’s identity, except for those brave people who challenge society. On the next page is a chart that lists many noun phrases you might find useful to help you describe the setting or issues of a text in more detail.
  13. 13. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 8 It’s time for you to give it a go In your workbook, write an introductory statement with a detailed noun phrase using the table below to help you. Introduction and topic sentence idea nouns and noun phrases “Overall Idea” noun phrases “Overall Idea” nouns • the challenges and triumphs of… • the pressures and difficulties of… • the dangerous nature of… • the devastating impact of… • the value of.. • the importance/significance of… • how…is prevalent in the world of… • the ways in which acts of…can… • how experiences of…can • how times of…can • a world in which…is.. • how societies in which…can… • the ways in which….affects us all. • the ways in which people overcome… • the nature of…in a world that/where… • the experience of… in a world where… • how…challenges us to… • how…forces us to… • how…compels us… • what it means to be… • what it means for… • the struggle for… • the quest for… • the ways characters routinely experience… growing up belonging identity independence friendship family society happiness loyalty love hope compassion sacrifice power prejudice oppression self interest/selfishness hate defeat despair conflict loss grief discovery courage strength being a hero lessons survival justice conscience truth nature life lives humanity the past the future the present
  14. 14. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 9 Sentences within introductions Once you’ve practised your opening sentence a few times, it’s time to respond to the topic you have been given to discuss. Below is an example of an introduction which shows three types of sentences used in introductions: Essay topic: JK Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone shows us that in order to become a hero you don’t need to be talented, you just need to be courageous. Introductory sentence Throughout Harry Potter, JK Rowling contrasts different characters, demonstrating that each of them has their own kind of heroism. Sentence that addresses the topic and discusses how an author constructs a text Her novel highlights a range of attributes and attitudes that heroes must have, such as the desire to improve Hogwarts and the world around them. Sentences that provide an overview of the main examples to be used throughout the essay As the protagonist of the novel, Harry is the most obvious hero and, although he is new to the wizarding world, he does have a number of talents that other wizards of his age do not have. Hermione Granger is also new to the wizard world, but her intelligence is greater than most other people of her age - she is a very annoying character, but in the end, is also a hero. Sentence that links to further or contrasting examples to be used in the essay However, Ron, who has always been a part of the wizarding world, is not particularly brave or intelligent but is a hero because he is a loyal friend.
  15. 15. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 10 It’s time for you to give it a go The table below offers suggestions about phrases which can you can use to construct the second and third types of sentences from the example above. In your workbook, write an introduction using the table below to help you. Sentence that addresses the topic and discusses how an author constructs a text Sentences that provide an introduction to the main examples to be used throughout the essay Sentences that link to further or contrasting examples Words to help introduce the author, text and idea in a new way Phrases to provide an overview of examples Adverbs and conjunc- tions to create links Articles The text… The characters… A central idea.. A key concern… Pronouns Her novel… His novel… One character who… The main character who… Many characters are… Many moments in the text are… The narrative focuses on events that… But other characters such as… However, there is/are also others… The most significant challenge for…is… The most important tech- nique for… Similarly Furthermore In addition Moreover In comparison to this But Yet In contrast On the contrary On the other hand Despite However While Whereas
  16. 16. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 11 Sentences that refer to the text & its author in a variety of ways A crucial part of making your writing more sophisticated, is ensuring you don’t repeat the same nouns too often. Rather than constantly writing the name of the text, author or director, you can use other nouns to refer to them. Here’s an example: In Edward Scissorhands, the protagonist is an outsider who initially finds acceptance in society, but is excluded from it in the end. The film represents its central character… Here is a list of useful alternative nouns to the name of a text, author or director: Novel Film Memoir Play narrative tale story work text piece of cinema text autobiographical account biographical account personal narrative narration recount life story life history chronicle drama piece of theatre theatrical work piece author writer novelist director chronicler biographer playwright dramatist
  17. 17. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 12 Topic sentences The first thing that you need to write in a body paragraph is a great topic sentence. Often, students make the mistake of writing a sentence that just has a topic noun in it (like the name of a character or the name of a theme). These topic sentences might look something like this: • JK Rowling shows us Harry Potter’s courage. • Romeo is impatient. • Stanley needs friendship. However, a better topic sentence has both a topic noun (also called an abstract or ‘idea’ noun) and a perspective phrase. In the three examples below, you can see that the perspective phrase provides a more specific or detailed statement about how or why a topic is explored in a text. This leads to better analysis in the body paragraph. Author or Character + verb Topic Noun Perspective phrase Lee uses the symbol of night to emphasise the dark nature of racism in Maycomb. JK Rowling shows us Harry Potter’s courage by the way he stands up to people who are more powerful than himself. Stanley needs friendship to overcome misfortune and adversity.
  18. 18. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 13 Starting your topic sentence is fairly straightforward. Have a go starting a topic sentence with the name of an author or character, plus a verb and then your topic. This table will help you with the verbs, but you’ll need to identify a topic on your own: Author verbs Character verbs uses emphasizes shows us reveals highlights focuses on characterises contrasts depicts illustrates demonstrates overcomes typifies seeks uses must needs The perspective in a topic sentence is a bit trickier. There are actually two parts to a perspective phrase: A conjunction, verb or preposition which in- troduces the perspective A noun phrase to emphasise the dark nature of racism in Maycomb. by the way he stands up to people who are more powerful than himself. to overcome misfortune and adversity.
  19. 19. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 14 It’s time for you to give it a go Have a go at finishing your topic sentence by using one of these conjunctions, prepositions or ‘to’ verbs to introduce a perspective about your topic. Conjunctions Prepositions ‘to’ verbs because but but also not only…but also as well as through by with for to illustrate to highlight to represent to depict to show to emphasise to create to overcome Beyond the Basics Once you have mastered this basic topic sentence structure, you can experiment with changing the order of the concrete noun, verb and abstract noun. For example: abstract noun verb concrete noun Friendship enables Stanley to overcome the consistent unluckiness and poverty that his family have had for generations. OR Concrete noun Abstract Noun Verb Stanley’s friendship helps him overcome the consistent unluckiness and poverty that his family have had for generations.
  20. 20. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 15 Topic sentences can also begin with prepositional phrases. These phrases can add important information to the start of a topic sentence or help one paragraph link more effectively to a preceding paragraph. • Throughout the narrative, JK Rowling shows us the courage Harry Potter has in standing up to people who misuse their power. • From the very beginning of the play, Romeo’s impatience and thoughtlessness lead the way to his eventual doom. • At the climax of Holes, friendship enables Stanley to overcome the consistent unluckiness and poverty that his family have had for generations. Here are some prepositions and prepositional phrases you can use at the start of topic sentences: Throughout Through By With During By showing us… From the outset In the beginning At the start At the point in the story where… For most of the In the end At the climax At the crisis By the end Punctuation tip: Remember: prepositional phrases at the start of a sentence need to be separated from the rest of the sentence by a comma.
  21. 21. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 16 Body paragraph sentences with basic verbs and detailed noun groups Often, when students write about examples in their text response essays they end up retelling the story. They don’t mean to, but this is what happens. Usually, this happens because these students are using very basic verbs like, goes, did, is. For example: Romeo is in love with Juliet and then he marries her. In the table below is a list of verbs (on the left) that are frequently used throughout text response writing. These verbs are often used to construct sentences that either retell the story or offer only a very simple description of the text. Frequently used verbs Poor sentence example went, goes Harry goes to Hogwarts to become a wizard. does, did Harry does not always do well in his classes. has, had, have Stanley has a curse on him. is, are, was, were Stanley is a fat boy.
  22. 22. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 17 There are two ways we can improve sentences with these frequently used verbs : 1. Delete retelling verbs and replace them with a noun followed by a stronger verb. Retelling verbs Poor sentence example Better sentence example went, goes Harry goes to Hogwarts to become a wizard. Harry’s education (noun) at Hogwarts teaches (stronger verb) him about the world of wizardry. does, did Harry does not always do well in his classes. Harry’s struggle (noun) in his classes demonstrates (stronger verb) that he is not special in every way. 2. Add more detailed noun groups to sentences with ‘is’ or ‘has’: Retelling verbs Poor sentence example Better sentence example has, had, have Stanley has a curse on him. Stanley has a curse on him that brings continual bad luck to him and his family. is, are, was, were Stanley is a fat boy. Stanley is a fat boy who struggles to fit in because others tease him for it.
  23. 23. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 18 It’s time for you to give it a go All of these words and phrases in the table below can be inserted after a noun to add more information to it. In your workbook, write a detailed sentence using the table below to help you. Extra Information Words Conjunctions Conjunction phrases and but yet or because and also but also yet also not only…but also Extra Information Words ADJECTIVES AND ADVERBIAL PHRASES RELATIVE PRONOUNS along with in addition to together with as well as in conjunction with on top of including which who that in which through which by which
  24. 24. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 19 Body paragraph sentences with multiple verbs One of the important elements of analytical writing is to write longer sentences that contain detailed analysis of the characters, events or techniques in a text. Here’s an example: By the very end of the novel, when Harry finds the Philosopher’s Stone, we think he is a hero because he has worked with his friends, showing great team work and loyalty as well as cleverness to figure out some of the puzzles. Throughout this chapter there have been a number of suggestions about how to add extra information to a sentence such as: • By using conjunctions • By creating noun groups A further basic element to writing longer sentences is to use more verbs. Let’s look at how many verbs are used in this example sentence: By the very end of the novel, when Harry finds the Philosopher’s Stone, we think he is a hero because he has worked with his friends, showing great team work and loyalty as well as cleverness to figure out some of the puzzles. In the example above, verbs have been used in three ways. Each of these ways allows the writer to analyse the text in a different way and add variety to their sentence. Below are examples of the three forms verbs can take in a sentence. ‘-ing’ verbs regular verbs ‘to’ verbs finding thinking being having showing figuring finds thinks is has shows figures to find to think to be to have to show to figure
  25. 25. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 20 Effective text response sentences will always have a regular verb in them. To add more detail, they will add more regular verbs or ‘to’ or ‘-ing’ verbs. It’s easy to know how to use a regular verb in a sentence but ‘to’ and ‘-ing’ verbs are a bit tricky. Here are some examples of how to use regular verbs plus ‘to’ and ‘-ing’ verbs within a sentence: Sentences can also start with verbs. Here are same basic examples of how: sentence structures with multiple verbs examples Regular verb chain Harry finds the philosopher’s stone, solves puzzles and defeats Voldemort. Regular verb chain + ‘-ing’ verb Harry finds the philosopher’s stone, solves puzzles and defeats Voldemort, showing us his heroic qualities. Regular verb sentence + conjunction + regular verb chain Harry finds the philosopher’s stone because he acts courageously, works with others and thinks through problems. different sentence structures with verbs examples ‘To’ verb + noun, rest of the sentence To find the philosopher’s stone, Harry must work with others, solve problems and be brave. Preposition + ‘-ing’ verb, rest of the sentence By finding the philosopher’s stone, Harry shows us he has the courage to stand up for himself in frightening situations, put himself in the face of danger and to trust his skills. Conjunction + noun + verb, rest of the sentence When Harry finds the philosopher’s stone, it shows us that he has the ability to work with others, to solve problems and to be brave.
  26. 26. Punctuation tips: • Commas are used to separate items on a list where there is no ‘and’. When we use multiple verbs in a sentence, it will usually create a list of actions that need to be separated with a comma: Harry finds the philosopher’s stone (action 1), solves puzzles (action 2) and defeats Voldemort (action 3). A comma goes after the first action in this list but one isn’t needed between the second and third action because there is an ‘and’. • Commas are used before an ‘-ing’ verb when it is adding on information to a sentence. Harry finds the philosopher’s stone, solves puzzles and defeats Voldemort, showing us his heroic qualities. • Sentence openers that add on information before the rest of a main sentence need to be separated out from the main sentence with a comma: When Harry finds the philosopher’s stone, it shows us that he has the ability to work with others, to solve problems and to be brave. Adding a comma after the sentence opener makes it easier for the reader to understand the sentence.
  27. 27. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 22 Body paragraph sentences that use evidence In your body paragraphs, you will need to introduce a range of different examples to support your discussion points. You should use a variety of ways to introduce different types of evidence. The paragraph below uses quotes, events and character attributes: From the very beginning of the novel, it is clear that Harry is not an ordinary boy - he is able to keep his sense of humour even when living with the horrible Dursley family because he thinks “two of his ribs might already have cracked from trying not to laugh”. The Dursleys are always mean to him and don’t even give him a real room to sleep in, but Harry accepts the way he is treated. This acceptance highlights to the reader how Harry is a kind of hero, even at the beginning of the narrative. Furthermore, when Harry begins at Hogwarts, the reader starts to see just how heroic he really is. Harry’s heroism is evident in his talent at Quiddich and flying, but it is also because Harry is clever and insightful and is the only person who figures out that Voldemort has returned. By the very end of the novel, when Harry finds the Philosopher’s Stone, we think he is a hero because he has worked with his friends, showing great team work and loyalty as well as cleverness to figure out some of the puzzles. So Rowling’s novel demonstrates that being a hero is more complicated that just being brave.
  28. 28. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 23 It’s time for you to give it a go The table below offers a range of ways examples can be introduced. In your workbook, practise introducing examples using the table below to help you. • Highlighting this, is the …scene/moment where… • Emphasing this, is the …scene/moment where… • Images of…are used to highlight… • Symbols of…are used to show… • The technique of…illustrates how/that… • A crisis emerges for… when…demonstrating that… • The problem for…arises when… • The incident where…suggests that… • The scene in which…shows us that… • It is when… • It is evident when… • Evidence such as… • Instances such as… • [Character’s name]’s statement that.. “…” shows us that… • [Character’s name]’s belief that..“…” reveals to us that… • [Character’s name] says, “…” indicating that… • The action that most shows us…is when… • The actions of …are contrasted with… when… • The character is forced to… when… • The setting of…emphasises that… because… • [Author’s name] shows us that…is…when… • In the scene/moment where…we see that… • At the point where…the character is portrayed as… • By…the character is represented as… • When…occurs, the reader can clearly see… • Throughout the text, moments of…underline the importance of… • In stark contrast to this, is the… where… • This idea is made clear through… • This is apparent when… • These moments highlight… • These characters highlight… ‘-ing’ verbs Noun/ Article/ Pronoun First Preposition/ adverb This/these
  29. 29. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 24 Inserting and analysing quotes in your body paragraphs There are two important parts to using quotes effectively in your text analysis. The first is actually inserting the quote itself and the second is analysing the quote. Let’s look first at some different ways to insert quotes. INSERTING QUOTES Inserting quotes into your body paragraphs will be an important way for you to discuss and analyse evidence from a text, but it’s one of the things students often find quite tricky. One reason for this is that students often use quotes that are too long, like in the example analysis about the character of Katniss from The Hunger Games below. Katniss likes to have people to help her. ‘I take his hand, holding on tightly, preparing for the cameras, and dreading the moment when I will finally have to let go.’ This shows that she needs others to survive. This example would have been better if the student writing it had selected the most important words in the quote, rather than writing out a whole sentence, like this: Katniss finds herself ‘dreading the moment’ when she will be on her own in the Hunger Games, demonstrating that she needs others to help her survive. From these two examples, it should be obvious that you should try to keep your quotes short so you are focusing on the words that matter most. Another reason students find putting quotes into sentences tricky is that they aren’t familiar with different sentence structures they can employ to insert quotes. Let’s look at two different examples of a student’s analysis of the character Katniss from The Hunger Games: ‘I realize, for the first time, how very lonely I’ve been in the arena. How comforting the presence of another human being can be.’ This shows that finding friendship is important to her. OR Katniss learns ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’, which demonstrates that finding friendship is important to her.
  30. 30. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 25 The first example is not a very good one, because the student has not demonstrated an ability to insert the quote within their own sentence. Inserting quotes properly into a sentence means you must find a way for the quote to be a seamless part of the sentence. Let’s break apart the second sentence to see how it inserts a quote seamlessly: Character verb Quote Relative pronoun + Analytical verb Katniss learns ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’, which demonstrates that finding friendship is important to her. Once you can insert quote into a sentence like this, you might like to try putting a bit of analysis in before the quote. Here is an example: Collins demonstrates how Katniss learns to find friendship and help when she writes about ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’. When this example is broken up, it looks like this: Character Analytical verb Analysis Reporting verb + Quote Collins demonstrates how Katniss learns to find friendship and help when she writes about ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be.’
  31. 31. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 26 It’s time for you to give it a go Use the words in the table below to insert a quote from a text into your own sentence. Follow the structure in one of the example sentences from pages 24 and 25: Relative pronoun Analytical verb Reporting verb which who that demonstrates shows represents describes characterises portrays reveals struggles says claims thinks feels believes admits suggests observes
  32. 32. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 27 Analysis of quotes In all of the examples we’ve used so far, the analysis of the quote looks pretty similar, but this doesn’t mean there is only one way of structuring your analysis. In fact, your essay would become pretty repetitive if that’s what you did. One of the simplest ways of varying your sentence analysis is like this: Katniss thinks ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’, demonstrating how finding friendship is increasingly important to her. When you break this sentence into its parts, it looks like this: Character Reporting verb Quote Comma + ‘ing’ verb Katniss thinks ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’ , demonstrating how finding friendship is increasingly important to her. Quotes can also follow sentence openers where the start of a sentence begins with an extra information word like ‘when’, as you can see in the examples below: Extra information sentence opener + reporting verb Quote Analytic verb When Katniss thinks ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’ , she reveals how the Hunger Games have changed her into someone with a better understanding of others. Although Katniss thinks ‘how comforting the presence of another human being can be’ , she struggles to give up her independence and rely upon the goodwill of others.
  33. 33. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 28 It’s time for you to give it a go Use the above examples as models and the verbs from the chart on page 13 to help you analyse your quotes. You can also use the extra information words listed here to help you start your sentences differently: When Although Despite Since
  34. 34. Punctuation tip: You must put quotation marks around your quotes. Your teacher might prefer that you use double quotation marks, like this “…” or single quotation marks like this ‘…’ . It doesn’t matter which you use, as long as you are consistent and use the same quotation marks every time you insert a quote. There are also some other important rules about how to punctuate when using quotes: • Quotes after a reporting or thinking verb such as ‘says’, ‘writes’, ‘suggests’, ‘claims’ , ‘believes’ or ‘thinks’ need to be introduced with a comma: Dumbledore says, “Voldemort… cannot understand…love.” • Quotes introduced after the verbs ‘is’,’are,’ ‘was’, ‘has’ or ‘have’ do not need to be introduced with a comma: Dumbledore says that one thing Voldemort cannot “understand” is “love”. • Quotes not introduced after a verb don’t need a comma before them: Dumbledore says Voldemort “cannot understand…love”. • Quotes can be introduced with a colon when they provide explanatory evidence for a complete point that has been made: Dumbledore says that Harry is protected from the dark lord by the care of his mother: “Voldemort cannot understand love.”
  35. 35. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 30 Body paragraph sentences that begin in a variety of ways A good body paragraph will include a series of similar examples or compare different examples and discuss them. To link sentences and build on discussion, we need to start our sentences in a variety of ways as this body paragraph demonstrates: From the very beginning of the novel, it is clear that Harry is not an ordinary boy - he is able to keep his sense of humour even when living with the horrible Dursley family because he thinks “two of his ribs might already have cracked from trying not to laugh”. The Dursleys are always mean to him and don’t even give him a real room to sleep in but Harry accepts the way he is treated. This acceptance highlights to the reader how Harry is a kind of hero, even at the beginning of the narrative. Furthermore, when Harry begins at Hogwarts, the reader starts to see just how heroic he really is. Harry’s heroism is evident in his talent at Quiddich and flying, but it is also because Harry is clever and insightful and is the only person who figures out that Voldemort has returned. By the very end of the novel, when Harry finds the Philosopher’s Stone, we think he is a hero because he has worked with his friends, showing great team work and loyalty as well as cleverness to figure out some of the puzzles. So Rowling’s novel demonstrates that being a hero is more complicated than just being brave.
  36. 36. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 31 It’s time for you to give it a go The table below provides suggestions about different words that can be used to start sentences. In your workbook, write a body paragraph and try to start sentences within it in at least three different ways. And But By So Use these words at the start of a sentence to provide an additional example or further analysis on top of the previous sentence also furthermore as well as moreover along with in addition likewise on top of this is also these Use these words to introduce a different example or point of discussion although however still despite this on the other hand nevertheless yet beside aside from in comparison meanwhile on the contrary conversely Use these words to begin a sentence focusing on how a technique is used or a character acts in a text through since with when as Use these words to bring your discussion to a conclusion therefore as a consequence hence consequently for this reason ultimately this what this these
  37. 37. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 32 Concluding statements Conclusions don’t simply repeat your introduction. They should highlight the main points you have made in your essay, ensuring that your reader clearly understands the best points you have made. There are a range of ways to begin your conclusion. One simple and effective way is to begin with an adverb such as in this example: Ultimately, J.K Rowling shows that heroes have different talents and abilities. Here is a list of other adverbs and phrases you can use to start a conclusion: Concluding adverbs Concluding phrases Ultimately… Essentially… Fundamentally…. On its surface the text be…but underneath… In the end… While the novel shows us…the most important message of the text is… However, a conclusion needs more than just a concluding word or phrase at its beginning. Here is a complete example of a conclusion: On its surface, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone seems to show how important bravery is. However, the characters are more than just courageous because they also use their intelligence to overcome challenges. Furthermore, characters such as Hermione and Ron demonstrate the power of loyalty in difficult times. Ultimately, the best kind of heroism in Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone is being true to yourself and your friends. Notice that nearly all of the sentences in the above conclusion begin with a linking adverb or adverbial phrase. These linking words allow the conclusion to: • Provide an important point made in the essay • Provide a alternative points in the essay • Link each sentence and come to a logical end
  38. 38. WRITING TEXT RESPONSE SENTENCES 33 It’s time for you to give it a go The table on the following page lists different words and phrases you can use to start sentences that do each of these things. In your workbook, write a conclusion using the table below to help you. LINKING ADVERBS AND ADVERBIAL PHRASES Alternative perspective Additional points Concluding phrase However Although While Yet what is most important…However, the text is not just about… …but is actually …really …more importantly …more signficantly Furthermore Moreover Additionally Finally The result of this As a result As a consequence In the end
  39. 39. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 34
  40. 40. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 35 Writing poetry analysis sentences Many students groan at the idea of poetry – it’s full of love-stuff and images of flowers, right? And what makes it even weirder is that it’s written in short lines of words in the wrong order that don’t sound like anything a real person would say. Firstly, most poetry is not about lovey-dovey images and flowers. Your teacher will give you a range of poetry about all sorts of things: from war, to indigenous experiences, to images of everyday events. In fact, poetry is about exactly the same things that all texts are about: life and how we, as humans, experience it. However, there is no arguing with the idea that poetry is written quite differently to prose (prose is ‘normal’ writing), and that it uses some pretty interesting words. These are exactly the sorts of things you are expected to analyse when writing about poetry. Rather than being put off by how ‘weird’ poetry might look, you should analyse this very weirdness. This chapter is going to provide you with a range of words and phrases to help you do just that. POETRY ANALYSIS IS A TYPE OF TEXT RESPONSE There are many ways in which writing an analysis of poetry is like any other text analysis, and for this reason you should use many of the tables from the ‘Writing text response sentences’ chapter. However, there are specific differences in writing about poems, and these are outlined in this shorter chapter. chapter2
  41. 41. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 36 Writing introductions Writing about the type of poem Your teacher will probably point out that there are different types of poems. Listed in the table below are some types of poems that students commonly study. See how many different types of poems you are already familiar with: Poem type Form Purpose Limerick Five lines: lines 1,2 & 5 rhyme with each other; lines 3&4 rhyme with each other To amuse and be funny for the audience Haiku Three lines: line 1 has 5 syllables, line 2 has 7 syllables, line 3 has five syllables To provide a brief, vivid image of something. Typically, a haiku should contrast two ideas to show one whole idea Sonnet Fourteen lines: the first 8 lines are called an ‘octet’; the last 6 lines are a ‘sestet’ Shakespearean sonnets have a rhyming couplet as the last two lines Petrachan or classical sonnets just have the octet and sestet Like a haiku, a sonnet compares two ideas to show a whole. Line 9 is called the ‘volta’ and is where the contrasting idea is first introduced Ode Usually a regular (in rhyme and rhythm) poem, often with several stanzas To praise a person, object or idea Elegy Traditionally written in rhyming couplets (when two lines rhyme) To express sadness for a tragic event, especially a death
  42. 42. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 37 Poem type Form Purpose Ballad Several stanzas long, it usually has four lines per stanza and these lines rhyme in an ABAB pattern To tell a story Lyric poem The most common form in modern poetry, lyric may be written in free-form (i.e. not have any obvious rhyme or rhythm). However, the more you learn about poetry, the more you will be able to find the sneaky rhymes and rhythms in this type of poetry To explore an idea, emotion or event There are other types of poems you might be familiar with - including acrostic poems (where every line begins with the letter of a larger word or name), or nursery rhymes, but you will usually only look at these in the first years of primary school, and not be expected to write an analysis of them.
  43. 43. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 38 Writing introductory sentences Knowing what kind of poem you are looking at will give you some clues as to why the poet is using that form. This will provide the basis for an introductory sentence to your analysis. Let’s look at some examples: One of Shakespeare’s most famous sonnets, ‘Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?’ draws heavily upon images of nature, and both compares his love with a summer’s day as well as describing how his love is not going to pass away like summer, but will always be remembered by his poem. Although its images are ridiculous, Lewis Carroll’s famous ‘Jabberwocky’ is, in many ways, a traditional ballad – it tells the tale of a young man defeating a monster. By using the image of a single gum tree, Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s lyric poem ‘Municipal Gum’ describes the way in which indigenous people have had their lives broken by European settlement. In each of these examples, the writer is using her understanding of the form of the poem to describe what the poet is trying to do. Whenever you are writing about the form of a poem, you must go on to explain why that form is important. Because each of these forms is doing something slightly differently, you will need to use different analytical verbs to help with your writing. Look at the table on the next page to see which verbs you will use for different poems. Sonnet /Haiku Ode Elegy Ballad Lyric Limerick contrasts compares juxtaposes parallels weighs praises lauds enthuses pays tribute to applauds celebrates mourns laments yearns sorrows over longs for suffers dramatises tells the tale of recounts romanticises embellishes describes ponders reflects considers meditates speculates contemplates imagines revels in delights diverts amuses entertains
  44. 44. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 39 As with the first sentence of a text response, the introductory sentence of a poetry analysis has identifiable elements: Introductory sentence element Example 1. Introduces the poet, poem title and poem form …Shakespeare’s most famous sonnets, ‘Shall I compare thee…’ …Lewis Carroll’s famous ‘Jabberwocky’… … Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s lyric poem ‘Municipal Gum’… 2. Refers briefly to some of the main images … images of nature, and both compares his love with a summer’s day… …images are ridiculous… …the image of a single gum tree… 3. Uses an analytical verb to describe what is happening in the poem … compares his love with a summer’s day… … tells the tale of… …describes the way in which… It’s time for you to give it a go Using both of the tables on pages 36 and 38, write a sentence that introduces the poem you are analysing.
  45. 45. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 40 Writing sentences about more than one poem Sometimes you will be analysing more than one poem at a time, so you will need a different way to introduce this sort of analysis. There are two main ways you will be grouping poems together: 1. Poems that are about a shared idea (e.g. poetry about war) 2. A group of poems by the same poet (e.g. poems by Emily Dickinson) These two groups require different sort of sentences, for example: Many poets struggle to come to terms with the brutal and dehumanising experience of war, often contrasting the glorious ideals of leaders with the horrifying reality of men’s deaths. OR Emily Dickinson’s collection of poetry explores the essence of life, nature and the inevitability of death. POEMS THAT ARE ABOUT A SHARED IDEA When analysing poems about a shared idea, it is important to outline that idea in your first sentence. In the case above, the shared idea is war, but rather than just jotting down that very short word, the writer has put in a couple of interesting adjectives to describe the nature of war. This means that her first sentence is much more interesting and gives a focus to how she will discuss the way war is presented in the poems she is analysing. It’s time for you to give it a go Look at the table on the next page and choose one word from each column to construct an introductory sentence that links your poems together.
  46. 46. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 41 Words to group the poets Verb Adjectives Idea Nouns Verb 2 Many poets… Countless writers… Various writers… Frequently, poets… In many of their works, poets… ponder muse upon consider reflect describe examine explore praise enthuse rhapsodise struggle wrestle brutal dehumanising dreadful awful desperate fundamental essential important insightful joyous celebratory exuberant delightful war life death love nature cycles of life prejudice invasion justice gender colonisation suffering joyous moments in life being an outsider turning points leaving… feelings of… images of… moments when… being faced with… contrasting comparing juxtaposing paralleling weighing praising lauding enthusing paying tribute to applauding celebrating describing pondering reflecting considering meditating speculating contemplating imagining *or any other verb from earlier tables with an –ing ending
  47. 47. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 42 A GROUP OF POEMS BY THE SAME POET When grouping poems by a single writer together, you will need to have a range of noun phrases to refer to the poems, like in the example below: Emily Dickinson’s collection of poetry explores the essence of life, nature and the inevitability of death. It’s time for you to give it a go Use one of the phrases from the list below, as well as words from the table above to construct an introductory sentence about a number of poems by the same author. Noun phrase for ‘group of poems’ collection of poetry body of work collection anthology of poems selection of verse collection of verse the collected works of… a compilation Writing body paragraphs Topic sentences for the first paragraph When you are analysing a single poem, it is often easiest to analyse from beginning to end. You will need to tell your reader which part of the poem you are analysing, and this information will often be in the topic sentence of your analysis. The topic sentence for a poetry analysis should therefore include information about where in the poem your analysis is focusing, and what this section of the poem is about. Let’s have a look at an example of an analysis of Robert Frost’s poem ‘The Road Not Taken’: The first stanza outlines the problem facing Frost: there are two diverging roads and the poet must make a choice as he ‘could not travel both’.
  48. 48. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 43 It’s time for you to give it a go Combine a phrase or word from each of the columns below to construct a topic sentence: Place/time phrase Verb Noun Phrase The first stanza… From the first line… The opening stanza… The initial couplet… The first verse… The first part of… The… …second stanza …third stanza …final verse In the… …first stanza, …second stanza, …third verse, …fourth verse, …final stanza, …concluding stanza, …last stanza, …the poet… …the poem… …[Poet’s name]… outlines describes explores begins creates focuses on expresses suggests hints at suggests considers reflects upon recounts the problem facing… the experience of… the idea of… a sense of… a feeling of… a memory of… images of… an image of… a picture of… a scene from… a scene that…
  49. 49. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 44 Sentences to analyse aspects of poetry USING THE NAMES OF TECHNIQUES IN SENTENCES Of course, writing about poetry will mean that you have to discuss different sorts of things than you would in a ‘normal’ text response. You will have to talk about rhythm and imagery and all sorts of other things. While it’s difficult to generalise about the effects that these techniques will have in the individual poem you are analysing, there are some new words that you will want to be aware of so that you can write about them with some kind of insight. Look in the table below for a list of poetic techniques, a short definition of what they are, and a very general discussion of how they might work in a poem. Technique How it works What effect might it have? Rhyme Usually, the final word of one line will rhyme with the final word of another line. Sometimes, there might be an internal rhyme where the word in the middle of a line rhymes with a word elsewhere. Connects words and ideas together. Rhythm This is how fast or slow the lines of a poem go. There are many different poetic rhythms that you can look up online. Makes a poem go faster or slower and therefore makes it seem more urgent or relaxed. Caesura Punctuation that happens in the middle of a line, rather than at the end of it. Stops the rhythm of a line and therefore puts a pause where the action or the description stops. The reader pauses as well. Stanza The ‘verse’ of a poem - like a paragraph in prose writing. Contains an idea or image that connects to the rest of the poem, but is also independent.
  50. 50. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 45 Enjambment A sentence flows from one stanza to another (or, sometimes, from one line to another). Gives a sense of anticipation of what is coming next. Alliteration Words begin with the same sound, often the same letter (e.g. raging rivers). Connects words and their images together. Assonance Like a rhyme ‘gone wrong’ – sounds within words sort of rhyme, but it’s not an exact match. Connects words and their images together. Susurration Lots of whispering ’s’ sounds (e.g. silver smoke swathes), or the sounds of a soft ‘c’ (e.g. cities, cell). Makes it seem as if the poet is whispering. Onomatopoeia When the word makes the sound it is describing (like the word ‘bang’). The reader can ‘hear’ what the poet is describing. Volta The ninth line of a sonnet. The ‘turning point’, where a new or contrasting idea is introduced. Although these ideas may seem complicated at first, during class you will become more familiar with them. The difficult thing is writing about them in your essay. You will need to practise this skill.
  51. 51. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 46 Below are two examples of sentences analysing the use of techniques in a poem. This first is about Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s ‘Municipal Gum’ and the second is about Lewis Carroll’s ‘Jabberwocky’: Noonucal highlights the idea of long-lasting suffering by using the rhyme of ‘wronged’ and ‘prolonged’ to connect the sound of ‘long’ with the hurt of the tree, which is ongoing. The onomatopoeia of the word ‘galumphing’ conjures up the sound of a child making loud sound effects as she pretends to gallop home, emphasising the child-like nature of the poem. Broken into parts of speech, the sentences look like this: Author + Verb Noun phrase Technique & Quote Analytic verb Noonucal highlights the idea of long last- ing suffering by using the rhyme of ‘wronged’ and ‘prolonged’ to connect the sound of ‘long’ with the hurt of the tree, which is ongoing. Technique + Quote Verb Noun phrase Analytic verb The onomatopoeia of the word ‘galumphing’ conjures up the sound of a child making loud sound effects as she pre- tends to gallop home, emphasing the child-like nature of the poem.
  52. 52. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 47 These examples demonstrate how verbs can be used in different forms. ‘Highlights’, ‘to connect’ and ‘emphasising’ are all verbs, but in different forms. The table below shows a range of useful analytic verbs in different forms. Regular verbs ‘ing’ verbs ‘to’ verbs highlights emphasises illustrates conjures creates underscores epitomises represents accentuates intensifies highlighting emphasising illustrating conjuring creating underscoring epitomising representing accentuating intensifying to highlight to emphasise to illustrate to conjure to create to underscore to epitomise to represent to accentuate to intensify Now it’s your turn Write a sentence analysing the use of a technique in a poem, following the structures provided in the example sentences above.
  53. 53. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 48 Writing about similes and metaphors Similes and metaphors or comparisons and contrasts are basic techniques used in many poems. They allow the reader to associate a certain picture of one thing with a particular idea or thing in a poem. Here is an example analysis of a simile in Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s ‘Municipal Gum’: Noonuccal likens the tree’s imprisonment in ‘hard bitumen’ to the experience of a ‘poor cart horse’ which has been ‘castrated, broken…wronged’. This parallel to a mistreated animal, creates for the reader a striking image of the tree as a living creature that is being tortured. Two words are particularly important for this analysis of the connection between the tree and the horse: the verb likens and the noun parallel.
  54. 54. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 49 Now it’s your turn Identify a simile, metaphor, comparison or contrast in a poem. Use the verbs and nouns in the table below to write one or more sentences analysing this feature: Verbs Nouns SIMILAR DIFFERENT SIMILAR DIFFERENT compares likens equates draws a parallel between links connects creates an analogy between juxtaposes contrasts emphasises the difference between illustrates the difference between draws a line between comparison likeness parallel link analogy juxtaposition contrast difference distance division
  55. 55. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 50 Using adjectives when writing in detail about poetry We typically think about adjectives in connection with creative writing, but this is not the only thing adjectives are good for. In the section about writing introductory sentences analysing poetry, you will have noticed that we referred to using adjectives to help describe the idea nouns. When analysing poetry, it is important to note that you should describe what you are analysing, and to do this, you will need to use a whole range of adjectives. 1. ADJECTIVES TO DESCRIBE SOUNDS: The sounds words make are an important tool poets use to create a feeling or picture for the reader about the ideas they are writing about. Here is an example about Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s ‘Municipal Gum’: Noonuccal illustrates the difference between the world of the city and the bush, by contrasting the harsh sound of the words ‘hard bitumen’ to the more natural and softer sounds of the words ‘cool worlds of leafy forest halls’. You will need to be able to analytically describe sounds in poems.
  56. 56. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 51 It’s your turn Look in the table below to find a series of adjectives that might help you to discuss the sounds in the poem you are analysing: sounds made by ‘hard’ letters (such as T,P,K) sounds made by ‘soft’ letters (such as S) happy sounds sad sounds percussive jarring explosive clattering clapping harsh cold abrupt susurrating whispering numerous sighing sibilant Sounds made by ‘fricatives’ (such as f, th) vibrating shivering shuddering puffing babbling burbling rapid chattering gleeful warm wailing mournful keening weeping lonely cold
  57. 57. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 52 2. ADJECTIVES TO DESCRIBE IMAGES Poems are ‘word pictures’ that aim to create striking images in our minds of the things they describe. This means we need to have a vocabulary to describe the types of pictures poems create. Here is an example about Shakespeare’s ‘Shall I Compare The To A Summer’s Day?’: The speaker’s description of his lover’s attractiveness as ‘eternal’ draws an image of magnificent and superior beauty for the reader. If we break the above example sentence into parts, it looks like this: Picture noun phrase Picture verb Picture noun phrase Positive picture adjectives The speaker’s description of his lover’s attractiveness as ‘eternal’ draws an image of magnificent and superior beauty for the reader.
  58. 58. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 53 Now it’s your turn Identify a quote from a poem that creates an image. Write a sentence analysing the image it creates using the words from the chart below to help you: Picture verbs Picture noun phrases create draw cast illustrate accentuate sketch reveal illuminate image of… picture of… vision of… account of… description of… impression of… Positive picture adjectives Negative picture adjectives Emphatic picture adjectives lush warm enticing soft joyful peaceful magnificent natural superior picturesque luminous incandescent grim dark bleak cold lonely violent hard isolated alienating unnatural inferior damaged stark vivid powerful strong startling striking immense profound deep complex intricate grave dramatic
  59. 59. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 54 Noun phrases When you are writing about poetry, you will often want to be quite specific in your language, or describe exactly what you mean in an idea. It’s often very difficult to find one single word that says exactly what’s in your head. So you can build noun groups to help you be more specific. You’ll remember that we discussed noun groups as important components of a topic sentence. However, noun groups can be used in any sentence in a poetry analysis to more specifically describe exactly what you mean. Let’s look at an example about Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s ‘Municipal Gum’: Noonucal’s question ‘What have they done to us?’ expresses both a sense that she is connected to nature and grief for what has happened to it. Although none of the words used to describe the question are very difficult, we know exactly what the student means in this phrase.
  60. 60. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 55 Now it’s your turn Try using the noun phrases below to help you build longer noun phrase. …the idea of… …the sound of… …the impression that… …the understanding of… …the belief in… …the significance of… …the hope for… …the memory of… …the thought that… …the echoing of… …the refrain of… …the tone of… …the clamour of… …the lament of… …the feeling of… …the experience of.. …the sense that… …the pleasure in… …the desire for… …the sorrow in… …the grief for… …the delight in… …the horror over… …the passion for… …moments when… …the times when… …occasions of… …stages in our lives when…
  61. 61. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 56 Adverbs and prepositions for describing when in a poem Whenever you are pointing out something about a poem, you will need to be specific about where this example is. To do this, you will need a range of adverbial or prepositional phrases to help you pinpoint exactly where something is in the poem. Below are two examples. The first is about Robert Frost’s ‘The Road Not Taken’ and the second is about Oodgeroo Noonuccal’s ‘Municipal Gum’: In the first two stanzas, Frost outlines the nature of the two different paths that confront him. Repeatedly in the poem, Noonuccal employs adjectives to portray the city world of the gum as harsh and unnatural. Now it’s your turn Write three different sentences analysing different parts of a poem. Look in the table below for some phrases and words to help you out. Prepositional phrases Adverbial phrases At the beginning of… In the [first line, second line etc…)… Throughout the (first stanza, second stanza, etc.)… From the very first line… Towards the end of the poem… In the closing line… In the final couplet… At the volta of the sonnet… At this point, the poet… Here, the poet… Frequently, the poet… Repeatedly in the poem,… Again, the poet is here… Early in the stanza… Later in the poem…
  62. 62. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 57 Analysing patterns in poetry In poetry, more than any other kind of text, there are many patterns that you can describe. Phrases are repeated, or can be transformed (so that they are similar, but slightly different). Here’s an example analysis of a pattern in Shakespeare’s ‘Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer’s Day?’: In line seven, the speaker argues that nature can be ‘dimmed.’ The next line reiterates this idea, stating that nature ‘declines.’ In this example, the verb ‘reiterates’ is used to point out a pattern. You will need a range of verbs like this to describe patterns in the poems you are analysing. Now it’s your turn Identify a pattern that occurs in poem. Using the words in the table below, write a sentence or sentences analysing this pattern. repeats builds upon transforms comes back to returns to reiterates replicates adds to heightens intensifies strengthens expands upon develops alters metamorphoses converts reshapes refashions revises evolves modifies
  63. 63. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 58 Inserting quotes and analysing evidence Like any text response writing, you will need to use quotes in your poetry analyses. You should refer to the ‘Using Quotes’ section of the text response chapter for a guide to different ways you can insert quotes into a sentence. However, there are a number of unique aspects that you should be aware of when using quotes to analyse poetry. Firstly, the quotes you will use in a poetry analysis are usually far shorter than quotes you might use in a text response essay. Often, they are only one word long, like in the example below: Frost introduces the idea of ‘morning’, epitomising his own youth, as the morning is a new, fresh time of day. When this sentence is broken into parts of speech, it looks like this: Author + verb Quote ‘–ing’ verb analysis Frost introduces the idea of ‘morning’, epitomising his own youth, as the morning is a new, fresh time of day. Now it’s your turn Write a sentence quoting and analysing a single word from a poem. Referring to the table on page 47 will help you do this.
  64. 64. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 59 At other times, you might want to insert two quotes to analyse a connection between different parts of a poem. Here is an example: The speaker describes the second path as ‘ just as fair’ and ‘worn…about the same’, illustrating that there is no real difference between the two roads. When this sentence is broken into parts of speech, it looks like this: Author + verb Quote Conjunction and further quote Comma + ‘–ing’ verb to analyse evidence The speaker describes the second path as ‘ just as fair’ and ‘worn…about the same’, illustrating that there is no real difference between the two roads. Now it’s your turn Have a go putting two quotes from a poem into a sentence and analyse the quotes in the same sentence. This table will help you: Conjunctions ‘–ing’ verbs and as well as and also as both…and as not just…but also illustrating epitomising demonstrating emphasising highlighting capturing underlining
  65. 65. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 60 However, sometimes you will want to insert a longer quote, possibly even a quote from two different lines in the poem. There are two ways you can do this. Firstly, you can insert the quotation in the same way as you would for a text analysis, like in the example below: After this long pause, Frost delivers the punch line of his poem: that he took the road ‘less travelled by,/ and that has made all the difference.’ You will note that there is a forward slash in the middle of the quote. This is to indicate where the line break is. If you have a quote that includes a line break, it is conventional to put in a forward slash to indicate that there should be a break. A second way to insert a quote, especially if it’s longer than three lines, is like this: Frost indicates the irony of the phrase ‘road not taken’ in the final stanza of his poem, when he dramatises the importance of the decision-making of his youth in the lines Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. Here, he emphasises his own sense of self-importance with the long, dramatic pause between the repetition of the word ‘I’… Here, the lines of the poem are simply indented on separate lines within the paragraph of the analysis but, after this, the paragraph continues as normal. Now it’s your turn Insert a quote of at least three lines into your analysis.
  66. 66. GRAMMAR HABITS 61 Punctuation tip: Colons can be used to introduce explanations or evidence. It is the punctuation equivalent of using a phrase such as ‘for example’ or ‘which is’. For instance, the above analysis could have been written like this: After this long pause, Frost delivers the punchline of his poem, which is that he took the road ‘less travelled by,/ and that has made all the difference.’ However, using a colon instead of ‘which is’ makes the analysis clearer and more elegant.
  67. 67. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 62 Sentences about what a poet thinks or believes One of your primary jobs in a poetry analysis is to analyse the message of the whole poem or parts of a poem. You will usually do this in the conclusion of your analysis. Sometimes a poem is simply providing an image of a certain memory or moment or describing a feeling; at other times, the message might be more complex. While your teacher will help you to understand what the particular message of a poem is, you will need to have certain words or phrases to help you write about this. Typically, these words will be nouns and noun groups, and then you will want an active verb to describe what the poet thinks or believes about this idea. Below are two examples of sentences analysing the message of particular parts of a poem. The active verb and the noun groups have been put in bold. The first example is about Shakespeare’s ‘Shall I Compare The To A Summer’s Day?’ and the second is about Robert Frost’s ‘The Road Not Taken’: With the words ‘thy eternal summer shall not fade’, the speaker celebrates the divine beauty of his lover, which is superior to nature. At the beginning of the last stanza Frost says, ‘I shall be telling this with a sigh’. Here, Frost critiques the way memories can change the reality of what happened.
  68. 68. Writing Poetry Analysis Sentences 63 Now it’s your turn Using the words in the table below, analyse the message of a part of a poem: Active verbs to describe the beliefs of the poet Noun groups for message of poem cautions… celebrates… describes… draws a connection between… projects… contrasts… juxtaposes… imagines… creates… dramatises… expresses… reflects… emphasises… critiques… …the difficult nature of… …the beauty of… …the challenges of… …the dangers of… …the reality of… …the experience of… …a belief in… …a sense of foreboding about… …a powerful sense of… …the way…can… …a striking image of… …a future, where… …a past in which… …memories of… …the delights to be found in…
  69. 69. Writing a Persuasive Piece There are many different forms a persuasive piece can take. They can be letters, editorials, opinion pieces or blogs. However, all of these forms share certain kinds of language. Writing persuasively is not what you write but how you write it. chapter3
  70. 70. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 66 Developing a Contention All persuasive writing must have a clear contention - but this is not unique to persuasive writing. Your expository essays, and text response essays should also have contentions. What is unique to persuasive writing is that your contention should be a call to action for the reader. You’re telling your reader what to think, what to do, how to act. The words that most convey this in our contentions are modal verbs. ‘Mode’ means ‘method’ or ‘the way something is done’. Modal verbs mean verbs that tell us the mode in which something should be done - perfect for persuasive writing. By using a strong modal verb, you are telling your reader how they should, ought to, must react. In the two examples below the second contention is much stronger because it has a modal verb (must) in it and it therefore tells readers what action is necessary (whether or not you agree with the contention!). Using mobile phones is a distraction for students. OR Using mobile phones is a distraction for students and they must be banned from all classrooms. It’s time for you to give it a go Use the strong modal verbs in the table below to write your contention: Modal Verbs (strong) Modal Verbs (weak) should ought must need would have (i.e. We have to accept our responsibility to the environment.) can could may Starting a persuasive piece
  71. 71. 67Writing a Persuasive Piece Engaging the audience through pronouns Good persuasive writing relies upon you engaging your audience in a more direct way than other, formal types of writing. This means that you will use pronouns that you wouldn’t use in any other forms of writing. There are three different groups of pronouns represented in the table below: Number First Person Second Person Third Person Singular I, me you he, she, it, her, him Plural we, us you they, them, everybody, everyone, nobody Singular my, mine your, yours his, hers, its (note that there is no apostrophe here) Plural our, ours your, yours their, theirs (note that there is no apostrophe here)
  72. 72. Punctuation tip: One of the important things to notice about pronouns is that they DO NOT have any possessive apostrophes in them. The is particularly important to understand about the pronoun ‘it’. Let’s say we wrote this persuasive sentence: Society must take care of its environment. In this sentence ‘its’ does not need an apostrophe before the ’s’ because it is a possessive pronoun. See the Grammar Habits section at the end of the book for a more detailed explanation about possessive pronouns. Remember: ‘Its’ only has an apostrophe if it is short for ‘it is’.
  73. 73. 69Writing a Persuasive Piece How will pronouns improve your writing? Look at the following three sentences: Technology allows access to interesting help and advice – I use it regularly – and that’s why it should be used in all classrooms. OR Technology helps you access interesting help and advice – you probably use it regularly – and that’s why it should be used in all classrooms. OR Technology helps Frankie access interesting help and advice – she uses it regularly – and that’s why it should be used in all classrooms. The most persuasive of these three sentences is the one with ‘you’ in it. Using second person pronouns directly connects the reader to the writing itself, and that’s what good persuasive writing does. This second sentence would probably have been even more interesting if the writer had tried to directly connect with the reader by combining the use of first and second person pronouns, like this: Technology helps us access interesting help and advice – like me, you are probably a regular user – and that’s why technology should be used in all classrooms. Connecting with your reader is one of the easiest ways you can write more persuasively; we are much more likely to agree with people we like and feel a sense of connection with. You can establish or create a sense of connection easily when you regularly use first and second person pronouns. One very basic way we can use pronouns to be persuasive is to show how people belong to or don’t belong to a bigger group who think or act in a certain way. Sometimes being part of this bigger group is a positive thing, or sometimes it’s a negative thing.
  74. 74. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 70 Here are some examples of persuasive sentences which use first, second and third person pronouns to show people how we can belong to a certain group and how this can be positive or negative: Good to be part of a group Bad to be part of a group 1st person Like most of you, I want my children to inherit a world which is not destroyed by pollution. What I’m suggesting that’s different to what nearly everyone else thinks, is that we must force people to take action rather than wait for them to decide to do it themselves. 2nd person Few of you would like to think of yourselves as being against sustainable energy. A few of you care more about having big cars than a healthy environment. 3rd person Every single persons knows we have a responsibility to take care of the environment. Everyone at some point in their lives has done something which has damaged the environment.
  75. 75. 71Writing a Persuasive Piece Below are some common and effective phrases featuring pronouns which show either that it’s positive or negative that people belong to a bigger group. It’s time for you to give it a go Try engaging your audience with one or more of the phrases in this table. What most people do What few people do like most people, I… like nearly everyone, I… all of us for all of us each and every one of us many of us/you most of us/you every one of us each and every person every single person unlike most people, I… in contrast to what most people think, I… few of us few of you few of us like to admit that… for some of you… nobody few people no one no one amongst us alone there is little we can do
  76. 76. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 72 Labelling the issue with positive and negative nouns In persuasive writing, you should try to label your side of the issue with positive nouns, to create a positive reaction in your reader, and dismiss the other side of the issue with negative nouns, like this: Mobile phone use should be seen as an opportunity for the class room, rather than the catastrophe most teachers try to describe them as. OR Students using mobile phones in class has reached crisis point - using more technology is not always the miracle people try to suggest it is. 
  77. 77. 73Writing a Persuasive Piece It’s time for you to give it a go Have a practice using these nouns to label your own issue: Positive Nouns Negative Nouns opportunity advantage breakthrough solution miracle answer to prayers stroke of good luck asset improvement leap forward gain progress benefit service recovery regeneration upgrade future plight problem quandary predicament crisis dilemma destruction catastrophe embarrassment imbroglio emergency disaster mess moment of truth (could be positive) point of no return hot potato dire straits showdown shambles
  78. 78. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 74 Using Adjectives Of course, these nouns can be even more powerful if you use positive and negative adjectives to paint a more favourable or gloomy picture, like this. Mobile phone use should be seen as a brilliant opportunity for the class room, rather than the dreadful catastrophe most teachers try to describe them as. OR Students using mobile phones in class has reached a dangerous crisis point - using more technology is not always the productive miracle people try to suggest it is. 
  79. 79. 75Writing a Persuasive Piece It’s time for you to give it a go Select positive or negative adjectives to describe the nouns you are using to label the outcomes of your issue: Positive Negative admiration of this view and people who hold it admirable advanced ambitious brilliant beautiful creative dazzling essential golden important intrepid intelligent new original realistic reasonable scientific scholarly detraction from this view and people who hold it abysmal agonising alarming awful bland boring broken corrupt disgraceful dreadful evil grubby gruesome gullible ignorant mediocre selfish sentimental snivelling
  80. 80. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 76 Positive Negative effort of people brave courageous conscientious determined eager energetic fearless heroic imaginative kind effort of people careless clueless confused exhausted fickle foolhardy helpless ill-informed impossible impractical incompetent substandard superficial stupid the effect beneficial decent effective essential harmonious hopeful long-term lasting productive profitable rewarding tangible the effect barren bruising dangerous demanding disastrous failing haunting inconsequential negligible short-term trivial wasteful
  81. 81. Punctuation tip: Commas are used to separate items on a list. If you use three adjectives in a row, you will need to separate them with one comma and a conjunction such as ‘and’ as in this example: Students’ use of mobile phones in class has reached a dangerous, dreadful and difficult crisis point. Using more technology is not always the creative, intelligent and productive miracle people try to suggest it is.
  82. 82. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 78 Tricolons (the rule of three) And why stop at just one adjective? When trying to persuade others, people will often use three adjectives (or three noun phrases, for that matter), to give their readers an idea of just how great (or dreadful) something is: Mobile phone use should be seen as a brilliant opportunity for the class room, rather than the dreadful, evil and dangerous catastrophe most teachers try to describe them as. OR Students using mobile phones in class has reached a dangerous crisis point - using more technology is not always the creative, intelligent and productive miracle people try to suggest it is. Note that each of these sentences has just one tricolon. It’s a bit too much if you write something like: Students using mobile phones in class has reached a dangerous, dreadful and difficult crisis point, using more technology is not always the creative, intelligent and productive miracle people try to suggest it is. You can also apply a tricolon to the nouns you used in the previous noun activity, like this: Mobile phone use should be seen as an opportunity, a breakthrough and a leap forward for the class room, rather than the catastrophe most teachers try to describe them as. OR Students using mobile phones in class has reached an emergency, a disaster and a crisis point - using more technology is not always the miracle people try to suggest it is.
  83. 83. 79Writing a Persuasive Piece Comparative and Superlative Adjectives You can add extra impact by experimenting with comparative and superlative adjectives. These are adjectives that tell you just how great (or terrible) something is. Often, as with many of the adjectives in the above table, you can change an adjective into a comparative adjective by adding more before it, and into a superlative by adding most before it, like this: Mobile phone use should be seen as a brilliant opportunity for the class room, rather than the most dreadful catastrophe most teachers try to describe them as. OR Students using mobile phones in class has reached a dangerous crisis point - using more technology is not always the most productive miracle people try to suggest it is. However, many adjectives are changed into comparative form by putting ‘-er’ at the ending or superlative form by putting ‘-est’ at the end. Grammar note: When you use a superlative adjective to describe a noun, you will need to also use ‘the’ before it. ‘The’ is called a ‘definite article’ because it means you are writing about one specific thing. ‘A’ or ‘an’ are called ‘indefinite articles’ because you’re not using them to write about a particular thing, but something general.
  84. 84. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 80 These are some persuasive adjectives and their comparative and superlative forms: Adjective Comparative Superlative Positive good wise great large quick big simple smart better wiser greater larger quicker bigger simpler smarter best wisest greatest largest quickest biggest simplest smartest Negative strange sad short tiny narrow shallow stranger sadder shorter tinier narrower shallower strangest saddest shortest tiniest narrowest shallowest So you could describe your issue as: The best opportunity, the wiser course of action, the simplest solution Or rubbish the other side of the issue as: The shorter term solution, the strangest idea, the tiniest of improvements
  85. 85. 81Writing a Persuasive Piece Persuasive help and hurt verbs Just as adjectives can be used to persuasively label something as good or bad, so too can help and hurt verbs. These verbs help you persuasively describe how an action will create a positive or negative outcome. For example: Extra funding will improve road safety. Road deaths destroy families and communities. Now it’s your turn Have a go writing a persuasive sentence using a verb from the first two columns from the table below: Help verbs Hurt verbs Adverbs benefit start improve succeed help support aid advance enhance promote develop create expand lift build produce establish uphold abolish harm hurt destroy devastate take away restrict cut stop prevent crush lose ruin wreck finish damage demean ravage entirely completely dramatically significantly considerably utterly ultimately permanently instantly rapidly quickly slowly actively
  86. 86. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 82 Verbs can be made even more powerful by combining them with adverbs - particularly in persuasive writing. In the examples below, the adverbs are underlined and the verbs in bold: The extra funding will dramatically improve road safety. This law will work to significantly reduce racism. Now it’s your turn This time, have a go writing a persuasive sentence using both a verb and an adverb from the table above. It’s important to note that help verbs don’t always need to be used to describe a positive outcome and hurt verbs don’t always need to be used to describe a negative outcome. Sometimes we want to argue that we shouldn’t support an action because it will bring about something bad: These laws will only support racists to hurt and offend others. At other times we want to argue that an action will stop something bad: This law will abolish discrimination from our schools.
  87. 87. 83Writing a Persuasive Piece Double-pronged sentences Often, persuasive writers will wish to show their readers that there is a particular fact that has a rational explanation or consequence. To do this, persuasive writers will often use multi-pronged sentences like these which combine both the fact and further explanation: (First prong) Although mobile phone use has increased amongst the student population, the results students receive have not increased, (Second prong) demonstrating that mobile phone use does not have a positive impact upon student work. OR (First prong) While students’ results have not necessarily increased over the past decade, they have not decreased either, (Second prong) no matter how much they have used their mobile phones. Compare the sentences above with the sentences below: Mobile phone use has increased amongst the student population. The results students receive have not increased. Mobile phone use does not have a positive impact upon student work. OR Students’ results have not necessarily increased over the past decade. They have not decreased either. No matter how much they have used their mobile phones. We cannot assume that mobile phone use has impacts negatively upon student learning. What the second set of sentences lack are conjunctions: the words which help us add more information to a sentence. Without the conjunctions, the second set of sentences seem more like a list of separate things, rather than ideas that connect.
  88. 88. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 84 It’s time for you to give it a go Use the individual conjunctions and the phrases or pairs in this table to construct double pronged sentences which persuasively present the meaning of examples and evidence: Conjunctions Conjunction phrases Conjunction pairs although while despite since unless if as a consequence of as a result of as soon as as long as even if in order to no matter how now that Not only…, but also Not just…, but also Rather than…, we should/ must… If…, then why… Neither…nor Cause and Effect verbs Another thing that creates stronger persuasive writing is using strong verbs that describe the cause or effect of certain issues, like this: Although mobile phone use has increased amongst the student population, the results students receive have not increased, demonstrating that mobile phone use does not have a positive impact upon student work. OR While students’ results have not necessarily increased over the past decade, they have not decreased either, no matter how much they have used their mobile phones: therefore, we cannot assume that mobile phone use impacts negatively upon student learning.
  89. 89. 85Writing a Persuasive Piece It’s time for you to give it a go Pick at least one cause or effect verb from the table below to write a sentence arguing about the impact of an action: Alternative Verbs for “Cause” or “Impacts” -ing form results activates influences inspires benefits advances instigates mobilises prompts spurs supports stimulates propels rouses motivates energises induces impels drives incites emerges occurs aids supports produces forces alters resulting activating influencing inspiring instigating mobilising prompting spurring stimulating propelling rousing motivating energising inducing impelling driving inciting emerging occurring aiding supporting producing forcing altering
  90. 90. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 86 Using adverbs to create generalisations One of the very basic persuasive techniques you can use is creating generalisations. Generalisations persuade us by making the issue seem more (or less) frequent than it really is - they can intensify the importance of the issue. This means that we can argue: People in the real world always have their mobile phones with them. OR Students simply don’t use their phones appropriately. OR Mobile phones have been an integral part of life since 1996. While many people are familiar with adverbs that end in -ly, the table below has a list of regular adverbs (the -ly sort) and irregular adverbs. All of them will help you to create generalisations.
  91. 91. 87Writing a Persuasive Piece It’s time for you to give it a go Write one sentence using either a regular or irregular adverb to make a persuasive generalisation: Regular Irregular only really literally certainly simply completely entirely absolutely regularly mostly repeatedly daily hourly constantly lately especially very too almost enough so quite sort of kind of somewhat always everyday everywhere every time wherever once
  92. 92. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 88 Writing about evidence Evidence is a key part of any persuasive piece. However, in order to use evidence as effectively as possible, there are two things we need to do in our persuasive writing: make an audience trust the source of evidence and convince the audience the evidence shows us something important. This section takes you through the grammar of how to do these two things. 1. INTRODUCING EVIDENCE SO AN AUDIENCE TRUSTS ITS SOURCE: A key part of any persuasive writing is to use examples to support your case. For instance, let’s say we’re arguing that a school’s uniform should be changed. We might say: Seventy eight per cent of families agree that our school uniform should be changed. This sentence is okay, but it would be even better if it read like this: A recent poll of our school’s community carried out by the school council found that 78% of people support a change to school uniform. The adjective recent tells the reader they should be convinced by this statistic because it’s up-to-date. Also, the noun school council is persuasive because it informs us that the survey was carried out by a trustworthy or reliable source.
  93. 93. 89Writing a Persuasive Piece Now it’s your turn Introduce a statistic on a topic you’re writing about by using a word or phrase from each of the columns below: adjectives nouns Verb recent comprehensive nationwide extensive major detailed significant survey poll study carried out by conducted by released by published by run by Sometimes you won’t be using statistics to make your case but the words of experts, as in this example: Stephanie Brace, who is the head of Australian Nature, Australia’s leading environmental research institute, argues that cats do more damage to the environment than any other animal. In this case, the noun head and the adjective leading tell us why we should trust the expert. You can have a go writing about expert evidence by combining the words in the columns below: adjectives nouns Verb leading well regarded renowned biggest international best expert/s scientist/s researcher/s head/s of leader/s of argue agree urge recommend have found advises states believes have proven
  94. 94. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 90 2. CONVINCING AN AUDIENCE THAT EVIDENCE SHOWS US SOMETHING IMPORTANT Evidence doesn’t always speak for itself. Often you will need to explain to your audience exactly what it means. For example, if we’re arguing that cats are better than dogs, the following would not be a particularly effective use of evidence: A recent survey showed that more Australians like cats than dogs. Our task is not just to use evidence, but to persuade our audience as to exactly what the evidence means. Here are two more persuasive uses of evidence: A recent survey, in which 83% of Australians said they liked cats more than dogs, provides clear proof that cats simply must be better because a majority of people can’t be wrong. Or A recent survey of Australians revealed that 83% of people prefer cats to dogs, clear cut proof that establishes beyond all doubt that the noble cat is simply better than the stinky dog.
  95. 95. 91Writing a Persuasive Piece In the chart below is a range of parts of speech that you can use to establish the effect of a piece of evidence. It’s time for you to give it a go Try writing sentences using one word from each column to explain the significance of evidence: verbs adverbs adjectives nouns The evidence points to… points to paints a picture of shows offers confirms provides establishes substantiates suggests demonstrates makes clear makes evident leaves no doubt that The evidence clearly points to… clearly plainly manifestly emphatically absolutely abundantly beyond all doubt This black and white evidence establishes that… black and white clear cut certain irrefutable undeniable plain clear overwhelming conclusive compelling remarkable profound shocking shameful formidable grim stark This evidence provides compelling proof that… evidence proof facts picture testimony confirmation corroboration substantiation
  96. 96. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 92 Building your piece to a persuasive conclusion Linking phrases Let’s be clear about something to begin with: ‘firstly’, ‘secondly’ and ‘thirdly’ are not linking adverbs which will set your persuasive piece on fire. They’re stale words that create a list, not a series of arguments that build upon each other. But, did you notice how this section started? It used the phrase, ‘Let’s be clear about something to begin with’. This phrase performs the same function as ‘firstly’ but does it much more persuasively.
  97. 97. 93Writing a Persuasive Piece It’s time for you to give it a go Use one phrase from each of the sections in the table below to start the body paragraphs in your persuasive piece: Basic linking adverb More persuasive phrases Firstly Let’s start by looking at some facts. Let’s be clear about the facts to begin with… Let’s be clear about a few things to begin with… Let’s be upfront about one thing in particular to start with… Perhaps the most important thing to say to begin with is this:… Perhaps the most important thing to say to begin with is not…or…but… I’ll start by saying this: Secondly, Thirdly Beyond these facts… Of the upmost importance in all of this is… On top of this But it’s not just a matter of…it’s also… Yet this issue is about more than…it’s also about… However, we shouldn’t lose sight of… What is more… The last word in this argument is….
  98. 98. THE STUDENT GUIDE TO WRITING BETTER SENTENCES 94 Contrasting statements A simple and important strategy in persuasive writing is to contrast one thing with another, like this: Homework shouldn’t be boring and pointless tasks, but should be activities which are interesting and will genuinely help us. Contrasting statements like the one above emphasise to the reader how an action or idea is better than something else. This section takes you through three basic ways we can create contrasting statements. 1. CONTRASTING POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE VERB PHRASES: One basic way to create contrasting statements is by using a negative verb phrase such as ‘should not’ in conjunction with a positive verb phrase such as ‘should be’. These verb phrases have been highlighted in the example below: Homework shouldn’t be boring and pointless tasks, but should be activities which are interesting and will genuinely help us. You should use the conjunction ‘but’ to link the two contrasting parts of your sentence. Now it’s your turn Use a negative and positive verb phrase from the chart below to create a contrasting persuasive statement. Don’t forget to use ‘but’ to link them. Negative verb phrase Positive verb phrase is not shouldn’t be we can’t we don’t need we should not we must not it is should be we can do need we should we must we need
  99. 99. 95Writing a Persuasive Piece Help and hurt verbs can also be used effectively to create contrasting statements. You can use the help and hurt verb list on page 89 to create statements like this: We need to stop dithering on this and start acting now. 2. USING COMPARATIVE ADJECTIVES: Beyond using verbs and verb phrases to create contrasting statements, we can also use simple contrasting adjectives to compare two things, as in the example below: We need less talk and much more action. Now it’s your turn Have a go writing one persuasive contrasting statement, using the adjectives from the table below. Adjective 1 Adjective 2 less far less fewer limited more much more increased maximum 3. INTRODUCING A CONTRAST WITH AN ADVERB: You can also use an adverb such as rather to introduce a contrast: Rather than spending more money on another pointless idea that won’t work, we should spend our money on a plan that has proven science behind it. Now it’s your turn Have a go writing one persuasive contrasting statement, using an adverb from the first column to introduce it. Adverb phrase Verb phrase Rather than… Instead of… we should we must it would be better if.. let’s…

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