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ERIC Number: ED401537
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Mar
Pages: 12
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Five-Paragraph Essay--Legacy or Liability in English Writing Classrooms outside the U.S.
Van Gilst, Lorna; Villalobos, Jose
High school students in Venezuela study English grammar and vocabulary for 5 years, but, because theirs is an oral culture, they do very little reading or writing either in their native language or in English. When students reach the university and begin to study composition, they are unmotivated to write essays on teacher assigned topics for a number of reasons. The 5-paragraph essay instruction becomes tiring and boring and students fail to move into more in-depth writing. Courses that emphasize writing as a process allow for the transference of first language writing strategies to second language learning. One effective writing strategy is to have students practice freewriting, a technique used in prewriting, then read some of their writing, to integrate the 4 language modes--reading, writing, speaking, listening. Another technique is to have students write 2-3 journal entries a week which are reviewed by the instructor, who gives response to content, not surface errors. A process approach to writing was introduced to teach Russian students in the Ukraine. The use of cluster maps helps students generate and organize ideas, with small group discussion to clarify meaning. Drawing and labelling a house or flat plan is another effective lesson. (Examples, a lesson plan, and 5 references are included.) (CR)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Venezuela