Unit 1: Formal & Informal Letters
Grammar in focus
Formal and informal language
FORMAL LANGUAGE AND INFORMAL LANGUAGE IN LETTER WRITING
Formal language is the kind we use when we are being businesslike or when we are talking to people who we need to respect. We use formal types of language when we are writing essays, or applying for a job, or talking to our teachers. For example, you would use either Yours sincerely or Yours faithfully at the end of a formal letter, and would sign the letter using both your first name and surname.
Informal language is the kind we use when we are talking or writing to our family or friends. For example, you would use something like From, All the best, or Lots of love at the end of an informal letter, and would sign the letter using your first name or a nickname.
1. Language of formal and informal letters
A. Which phrases or types of language would you find in a formal letter? Which phrases or types of language would you find in an informal letter? Put them in the right column below. Formal Informal
• I am sorry to inform you that... • phrasal verbs • I am very grateful for... • Why don't we... • I will not be able to attend
• • • • • • • • • • •
Dear Tom, Dear Ms Smithers, Best wishes, Yours faithfully, I'm really sorry I... Unfortunately, we will have to postpone... We had a little bit of luck... Our computers are used for a variety... I use my pencil sharper for... polite phrases fewer passive verb forms
• idioms and slang • contracted verb forms like
we've, I'm, etc.
• Give my regards to... • I look forward to hearing from
• Let me know as soon as... • short sentences
B. Look at the following characteristics of letters. Decide whether they are applied to formal or informal letters or both by ticking the correct column.
Formal begins with Dear ... refers to reason for writing uses contractions uses abbreviations uses simple, short sentences uses simple linkers, e.g. then, later has paragraphs is polite could use slang could use exclamation marks (!) ends with Yours sincerely, / Yours faithfully, ends with Best wishes / Write soon ends with a signature ends with a signature and a full name printed (or in capitals)
2. Expressions to begin and end formal and informal letters
Look at the following expressions which are used when writing letters. Where would you find each of them in a letter? Make a list under each heading: Beginnings Signalling the end Closings (at the end)
When you have finished, decide if each expression comes from a formal or informal letter, and write F (formal) or I (informal) after each one.
a. Thanks for your letter. b. I'll finish now as I'm running out of space.
m. Bye for now. n. Anyway, I'd better post this letter now. o. It was lovely to hear from you.
p. All my love, q. Best wishes,
c. Thank you for sending me your
d. I must go now. e. Sorry for not writing for so long. f. If you have any further questions,
please contact me again.
r. It was great to get your letter. s. Regards, t. Thank you so much for writing. u. Take care, v. I was so sad to hear that you had been
g. I must apologise for not contacting you
h. I look forward to hearing from you. i. I'm writing to ask you a favour. j. I'd better finish. k. Write again soon! l. The reason for my writing is to apply
for the job I saw advertised.
w. Good luck! x. I wish to complain about the terrible
service at your restaurant.
y. Hope to hear from you soon.
z. I am writing with reference to your letter...
Formal And Informal Letters
SAMPLE OF AN INFORMAL LETTER
Questions for analysis: Read the letter below and answer the following questions:
1. Why does Rachel write this letter? What are the three different subjects she
2. What features of informal style can you find in the letter? Consider the
following: vocabulary, grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, cohesion/ linking words, and tone (what aspects of the writing show that Arantxa is a friend?)
36 Shaston Drive Shaftesbury Dorset SH2 3AB tel (0747) 5286 Mon Sept 4th Dear Arantxa, Thanks very much for lending me your flat while you were away. I hope you enjoyed your holiday in Morocco as much as I enjoyed my stay in Victoria. (I’ll tell you all about it when I see you at my party on Nov 5 th – I do hope you haven’t changed your mind about coming!) Now you’ve probably been wondering what has happened to your goldfish. (I’m sorry, I meant to leave a note about this, but I forgot.) You will have noticed that they used to be. This may have come as a bit of a surprise to you, but I expect you have guessed what happened. It’s bad news, I’m afraid. The fish you’ve got now are a pair I bought to replace yours which, I’m sorry to say, were both dead when I arrived in your flat on Aug 10th. If I’d arrived on the 8th as planned I don’t suppose this tragedy would have happened, but the thing is, I got caught up in the strike and had to spend a couple of days at Heathrow. That’s life, I suppose, but I still feel rather bad about it, both for myself (48 hours at Heathrow is no joke) and for the fish. Perhaps I should sell my story to the newspaper – “Innocent Suffer in Heartless Strike!”, “Holiday Chaos Hits Heathrow: Two Die!” Anyway, thanks again for the loan of the flat. I hope I left everything in the right place, and enough money by the phone to cover the few local calls I made – I’m sure you’ll tell me if there are any problems. I’m really looking forward to seeing you again, so I do hope you can make it to the party. If not, see you in Bilbao at Christmas. Love, Rachel
• The house number of a British or American address is written before
the name of the street, but write your own address in the way you normally do. Don’t write the name or address of the person you’re writing to on the left. This is only done in letters that are formal and impersonal. Date. These abbreviations are commonly used for the days and months: Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri, Sat, Sun; Jan, Feb, Aug, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec. Dear is always appropriate – for family, intimate friends and even enemies. My dear and Dearest are also possible, but very affectionate. Most letters start with a reference to the most recent contact you have had with the other person: Thanks very much for your letter, which came this morning It was great to see you again last weekend – and looking so fit and slim! Some people’s letters always begin: Sorry it’s been so long since I last wrote, but … followed by the excuses for not having written.
• Most letters end with a reference to the next contact with the other
person: I’m looking forward to seeing you / hearing from you. Do write again soon. I do hope to see you again in June, if not before.
• Love is a suitable ending for an intimate friend of either sex.
More affectionate: All my love, Love and Kisses, Lots of love For a friend or colleague (not intimate): All the best, Best wishes For a personal letter, but not to a personal friend: Yours, Regards
• In informal writing, exclamation marks are much more widely used and
are characteristic of a very chatty, conversational style. e.g.: How awful! No wonder she left him! Dashes are highly charateristic of informal writing
e.g. Her teeth are like stars – they are white and shiny.
2. How to sound informal
Your writing will sound much more formal if you: 1. Remember you are writing to a friend. Imagine a real person. • Be friendly and jockey. How’s your diet going? Refer to common friends. Have you heard from Sybilla? Say hello to Edward for me. Give my love to the baby. • Refer to things your friend already knows. As you know… Just like you said… 2. Write in “spoken” English. • Use personal constructions (phrases with / and you). I know this sounds silly, but… I hope you don’t mind my saying this, but… You’ll never guess… … if you know what I mean. 3. Use informal vocabulary, including phrasal verbs and informal linking words such as those below. • Expressing your opinion To be quite honest To my mind Frankly • Expressing surprise Believe it or not To my surprise This may surprise you, but Funnily enough You’ll never believe this, but Guess what! To tell you the truth From my point of view Actually As I see it In my experience I’d say
Changing the subject Anyway,… Incidentally,… Talking of which,… By the way,… That reminds me,… Before I forget…
Listing reasons To start with And another thing First of all And besides What’s more Plus
1. Write a letter to a friend you haven't seen or spoken to in a long time. Tell
him / her about what you have been doing and ask them how they are and what they have been up to recently (draft). 2. Write a letter to a cousin and invite them to your wedding. Give them some details about your future husband /wife.
3. Write a letter to a friend who has been having some problems. Ask him
/her how she /he is doing and if you can help. Note: Your writing should include: • Time: 20 minutes • Length: 150 words • Grammar: Pay attention to the use of informal language in your writing.
Use the checklist below to edit your draft. 1. Is the layout of the letter appropriate? ________________________________________________________________ 2. Is the language used in the letter informal? Can you give specific examples? ________________________________________________________________ 3. Are there any grammar mistakes in this letter? ________________________________________________________________ 4. Are there any spelling mistakes in the letter? ________________________________________________________________ 5. Does the letter convey the writer’s message? ________________________________________________________________
Unit 2: Letters to a Pen Friend
Grammar in focus
Here are some important rules for capitalization:
Capitalize the first word of a sentence.
Hello! My name is Princess Diana. We live in an apartment.
Capitalize the pronoun I.
Charles and I enjoy skiing.
Capitalize all proper nouns. Proper nouns include:
• Names of deities: God Allah Shiva • Names of people and their titles: John P. Doe Princess Diana of Wales Dr. Jonas Salk Professor Henry Higgins
Mr. and Mrs. John O. Smith (But: DO NOT capitalize a title without a name: the general, the prime minister, the math professor, the prince, the king.)
Names of specific places (places you could find on a map): Gary, Indiana Lake Victoria Mediterranean Sea North Pole Park Avenue Telegraph Avenue Trafalgar Square
Names of days, months, and special days: Monday Independence Day January Ramanda (But: DO NOT capitalize the names of the seasons.)
Names of specific groups of people (nationalities, races, and ethnic groups), languages, and religions: Asian Sino- Soviet Moslem American English Arabic
Names of geographic areas: the Middle East the North the Southwest (But: DO NOT capitalize the names of compass directions: Drive east for two blocks, and then turn south.)
Names of school subjects with course numbers: Chemistry 10A Business Administration 17A German 01
(But: DO NOT capitalize names of classes without numbers, except languages: computer science, business administration, economics, German conversation, English composition.)
Names of specific structures such as building and bridges: Golden Gate Bridge Park Plaza Hotel the White House Kensington Palace
Names of specific organizations (businesses, clubs, schools): Young England Roebuck & Co Kindergarten Sears International Students’ Club
Titles of compositions, stories, books, magazines, newspapers, plays, poems, and movies: Introducing Myself Introduction to Academic Writing Star Wars NOTE: Capitalize the first word, the last word, and other important words in titles. Do not capitalize short words such as articles (a, an, the), prepositions (of, on , for), and conjunctions (and, but, or). Of course, you must capitalize a short word if it is the first word in a title. A Tale of Two Cities Also, capitalize the titles of books, magazines, newspapers, and movies.
Work with your partner. 1. Write your own examples for capitalization rules. 2. Ask your teacher for help with spelling, or use a dictionary.
a queen a president a language a nationality a street a city or town _ _ _ _ _
___Queen Elizabeth II____________ _____________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________
a country a sea or an ocean a park a building a school or college a special day a geographic area in your country a geographic area in another part of the world a newspaper magazines or
______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ ______________________________
Change the small letters to capital letters wherever it is necessary in the following sentences: 1. farnaz is a student from iran. she speaks english, french, and farsi. her major is chemistry. 2. the three most important holidays in the united states are christmas, thanksgiving, and easter. 3. president john f. kennedy was born on may 29, 1917 and was assassinated on november 22, 1963. 4. green hills college is located in boston, massachusetts. 5. i am taking four classes this semester: english 40, sociology 32, typing, and a computer science course. 6. thanksgiving is always on the third thursday in november. 7. excuse me! can you please tell me where the golden gate bridge is? 8. there are three main religions in japan: buddism, shintoism, and Christianity. 9. in the united states, there is no school during the months of june, july, and august. this is the summer vacation. 10. i read a good book last weekend called the old man and the sea by earnest hemingway.
Letters to a pen friend
1. Do you want to have a pen friend? 2. Have you written a letter to make friends? Sample: Now find out what other members of the class feel about these questions. QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS 1. Is it a formal or an informal letter? 2. What is each paragraph about? Match these topics with paragraph 1-6. Topics: Her family Where she lives Why she is writing Two questions Her school Free time
ACE 23 Green Street Newton PL29JG
1. If you would like to make lots of new friends, first complete the following
Name (Full name, nick name…): Age: Likes: Hates: Type of penpal you’d like: Message: Others:
2. Search the information about penfriends via newspapers, magazines,
chatrooms on the Internet, and so on. Take your pick of a promising penpal. Or, if no one’s quite right for you, why not fill in the coupon and send it with a small photo to find a penpal.
3. Read Aliki’s letter again. Look at the way the address and date are written
and how she begins and ends the letter. Then look at the order of the topics. Note: You can choose some or all the topics, or anything that might attract your reader. However, details of information should not be included right in the first letter of this kind.
1. Write a letter about yourself to sign up in a Penpal Club. 2. Write a letter about yourself to one of the penpals below: Name: Rachel Stephens
Age: Likes: Hates: Type of penpal you’d like: Message:
16 Clothes and movies Bossy people Boys or girls of any age Please write soon
Age: Likes: Hates: Type of penpal you’d like: Message: Others:
21 Sporty girls, football, Rock Getting up early Girls aged 17 to 20 I can write in English or simple French
Use the checklist below to edit your draft. 1. Did you use correct capitalization? ______________________________ 2. Is your writing in formal or informal language? _____________________ 3. Did you provide enough information about you? ___________________ 4. What information did you provide? ______________________________ _________________________________________________________
5. Are you satisfied with your writing? ______________________________
Unit 3: POSTCARDS
GRAMMAR IN FOCUS
2. Advantages and disadvantages 3. Usage 4.Common abbreviation
An abbreviation is a short way of writing a word or a phrase that could also be written out in full. e.g.: St. = Street, USA = The United States of America
2. Advantages and disadvantages
Abbreviations are used to… Save time and space Make long names of organizations and long technical terms easier to remember Reduce the tediousness of long words repeated in an extended piece of writing But most of them are… Uncommon in formal settings and conventional writing Likely to cause misunderstanding, irritation, eye-tiredness to readers Difficult to pronounce, especially with those newly invented
3. Usage Most abbreviations should be written with periods.
e.g.: N.Y.C (New York City), St. (street), Ave. (avenue), Dr. (doctor), etc.
When an abbreviation comes at the end of a sentence, only ONE period should be used.
e.g. He works for the D.S.S. (the Department of Social Security) Postal state abbreviations are written without periods. Abbreviations like St., Ave. and the two-letter postal abbreviations of state names are normally used with numerals to write specific addresses. e.g. 12 St. Phetchaburi, Bkk 1056 e.g. NY 1023
Some abbreviations are appropriate in college and business writing: a.m, p.m, Mr., Mrs., Prof., Dr.
e.g. This year, Prof. Jackson is in charge of our Literature class.
4. Common abbreviations Abbreviations from Latin words
Abbreviation c., ca. e.g. etc. i.e. N.B. a.m. p.m. A.D. P.S. Latin expression circa exempli gratita et cetera id est Nota Bene ante meridiem post meridiem anno domini Postscriptus About, around For example And so on That is Note well (capitalize) The time of day between twelve midnight and twelve noon. The time of day between twelve noon and twelve midnight. Year of our Lord Postscript Equivalent
Kinds of abbreviation Example DIY BBC DSS Set of initials USA UK UN ETA VAT Do it yourself British Broadcasting Corporation Department of social security The United States of America The United Kingdom United Nations Estimated Time of Arrival Value added tax Spelled out as a sequence of letters of the alphabet Equivalent Pronunciation
Ad First part of a long word Gym Limo Bra Adv Word without its end Adj Cont Bdg Mr. Word without its middle Mrs. Miss Dr NATO UNESCO Acronyms Laser Radar AIDS
Advertisement Gymnasium Limousine Brassière Adverb Adjective Continue Building Mister Mistress/ Mesdames Mistress Doctor The North Atlantic TreatyOrganization United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation Radio Detection and Ranging Acquired immune deficiency syndrome Pronounced as words Read aloud as their unabbreviated full forms Read out loud as their unabbreviated full forms Pronounced as words
Repair the following sentences by giving the full form of abbreviations in each sentence. Practice
1. In Dec. 23rd , the stds. Govt. will present a Xmas tree 2 the C of E which was built in the 17th cent instead of the 2nd vol. of the famous book as they have promised. 2. Between Batterry Pk. & Greenwich Village, most of the sts. in N.Y.C have names instead of No.
3. Several British universities were founded in the Victorian era e.g. the U of Manchester was established in 1851. 4. The city of Bilbao was founded in ca. 1210 5. Central Africa was explored by Livingstone, Stanley, Brazza, etc. 6. AFAIK, it’s uncommon to ride a bicycle in Bangkok 7. U’v got BF? B4N! 8. FTBOMH, I want 2 express my thx for yr gift! 9. Not c u 4 ages. TOY all time! I LUV U. 10. IMU. We need 2 talk F2F coz IWALU.
Questions for analysis
1. Why does the sender write this postcard? 2. To whom does the writer send this postcard? 3. What are the characteristics of language used in this postcard?
Postcard: a card used for sending messages by post without an envelope, especially one that has a picture on one side. Aims To keep in touch To inform To express feelings To congratulate When to send Around the year, when the sender… is on vacation arrives a new place receive a new post, etc. Postcards are convenient, easy to create, easy to use, relatively inexpensive and offer a fast way to deliver your message Why to send
On special occasions of the receiver
Language style: Informal, spoken language
Use of abbreviations accepted
Short and condensed Neat and tidy
Another sample of postcards
Dear Mom and Dad, Today I arrived in Kairouan, Tunisia which is near Souse. On my post card there is a picture of the Great Mosque. I stayed here with some of the scholars and religious leaders. We talked about Muslim law and I learned a lot. Everyone speaks Arabic and at least one other language. The weather is very hot again, over 100 degrees! I hope it will rain soon, but I doubt it. I look out onto the flat land and can't see any clouds at all. Now I am about 800 miles from home. I'm really homesick, too. I miss you very much. I'll write to you at my next stop. Your loving son, Ibn Battuta
Match the postcard a, b, c with the right message 1, 2, 3
Dear Daddy, We arrived at Amsterdam 2 days ago. Holland is terrific and I think I love it. Although Sarah is a bit airsick, she finds your advice of us going honey moon in Amsterdam more than fantastic! We went to a bookshop yesterday and found out this lovely postcard. I remember you are seeking something like this for your collection. We’ll send you some more right when we see anything interesting. Take care. We’ll be back at the end of this month. With love, Geoff and Sarah
Dear Tom, I am enjoying my time in China. The ancient towns here are marvelous and the food is wonderful. I have lots to tell you when being back. I can’t speak Chinese so there are many funny things happening. If only u were here! You can help me a lot with your Chinese. Take care and I’ll write you at the next stop. Yours, John
My love, Thank you for stepping into my life and sharing with me the sweet as well as bitter moments of the days. Next Monday, it is five years since our two hearts found each other and became one. Be sure that I’ll be by your side, holding your hands in mine till the last breath of my life. Love you forever. Yours xxx xxx
Choose one of the following topics:
1. Your aunt has just given birth to a cute baby. Write a postcard to congratulate her on this occasion. 2. Imagine that you are traveling to Thailand and meet Jennifer Lopez, your idol, there. Write a postcard to your best friend in Vietnam. Don’t forget to tell her that you had a chance to talk to your idol! 3. You have just arrived in Hanoi to pursue your study at the college. Write a postcard to your pen friend in America, telling him/ her how you manage the new life in Hanoi. 4. Write a postcard to someone who is special to you, telling how you feel about him/her.
1. Are there any grammar mistakes in this postcard? ______________________________________________________________ 2. Are there any spelling mistakes in the postcard? ____________________________________________________________ 3. Does the writer use a lot of abbreviations in his/her work? ____________________________________________________________ 4. Can you understand all abbreviations? Do you think that others also understand? ____________________________________________________________ 5. Is the postcard short enough? _____________________________________________ 6. Is it written in formal or informal language? Can you spot out some examples? _____________________________________________ 7. Is the postcard emotional? Are you moved by it? _____________________________________________ 8. Do you think that this is a good postcard, regarding to format? Language? Expression? Do you like it? ____________________________________________________________
Unit 4: Letters of Invitation
Definite & Indefinite GRAMMAR IN FOCUS
‘A’, ‘An’, and ‘The’
Definite and Indefinite Articles
Look at the examples below and complete these explanations with ‘a’, ‘an’ or ‘the’.
- I had a sandwich and an apple for We generally use: lunch. ---------------------- the first time we talk about something. - The sandwich wasn’t very good, but the apple was delicious. ----------------------- when we talk about the same thing again.
The indefinite article: A/an
The pronunciation of ‘a’ and ‘an’: ‘a’ (pronounced /ə/) is used before consonant sounds, not just consonant letters; ‘an’ (pronounced /ən/) is used before vowel sounds, not just words beginning with the vowel letters.
Therefore we say: an umbrella a European a hall but but but a uniform an ear an hour
•Classification: We use ‘a’/ ’an’ when we wish to classify people, animals or
things. e.g.: When we say “A rose is a flower.” We mean that a rose is an example of a class of items we call flowers.
Quantity: The most common use of ‘a’/ ’an’ is the sense of ‘only one’ when we are not specifying any particular person or thing. e.g.: I’d like an apple. (i.e. only one; it doesn’t matter which) ‘A’/’an’ is also used before a countable noun mentioned for the first time; the speaker assumes the listener does not know what is referred to. e.g.: I looked up and saw a plane. (Mentioned for the first time – you don’t know which plane I mean.)
In short, there is no difference in meaning between ‘a’ and ‘an’. When using ‘a’/ ’an’, we must always remember two basic facts: 1. A/an has an indefinite meaning. 2. A/an can combine only with a singular countable noun.
The definite article: The
The pronunciation of ‘the’: ‘The’ is pronounced /ðə/ before consonant sounds. ‘The’ is pronounced /ði /׃before vowel sounds. e.g.: the end, the ear, the hour.
The use of ‘the’ for classifying: Some nationality adjectives are used after the when we wish to refer to ‘the group as a whole’. e.g.: The British = The British people in general.
The use of ‘the’ for specifying: When we use ‘the’, the listener or reader can already identify what we are referring to, therefore the shows that the noun has been specified by the context or grammatically. e.g.: Singleton is a quiet village near Chichester. The village has a population of a few hundred people. Locations which are ‘one of a kind’ always requires the (the earth, the sea,
the sky, etc.) We can use ‘the’ to name parts of a whole. e.g.: A human being: the heart, the mind, the brain
The use of ‘the’ in time expression: ‘The’ is used in time sequences (the beginning, the end), parts of the day (in the morning), with the seasons, in dates, in fixed time expressions (at the moment)
The use of ‘the’ with unique items: organizations (the United Nations), historical events (the French Revolution), ships (the Titanic), political parties (The Labour Party), official titles (the Queen), public bodies (the Army), the press (the New Yorker), titles (the Odyssey), beliefs (the angels), climate (the weather), species (the dinosaurs)
Others: superlatives (It’s the worst film I’ve ever seen); musical instruments (the piano); fixed phrases (the sooner the better); fixed expressions (do the shopping).
In short, when using ‘the’ we must always remember two basic facts:
1. ‘The’ normally has a definite reference.
2. ‘The’ can combine with singular countable, plural
countable, and uncountable nouns.
Fill in the blanks with ‘a/an’ or ‘the’.
I read recently in (1)…………… Times that the big American company, General Motors, has developed (2)…………… vehicle that uses (3)…………… power of (4)…………… sun instead of petrol. (5)…………… vehicle is called Sunraycer. Sunraycer has just taken part in (6)…………… race against 25 solarpowered vehicles. (7)……………route of (8)………….. race was from Darwin to Adelaide, (9)……………immense distance. Sunraycer covered (10)…………… distance in 45 hours at (11)…………… average speed of 41 miles (12)…….…….. hour in temperatures as high as 48°C. It beat all other cars by two and (13)…… …… half days! Sunraycer (‘ray of the sun’+ ‘racer’) is certainly (14)…………… car of (15)……….. future!
Writing Letters of Invitation
QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS
Jane Calder is seventeen. She has a pen-friend in Greece called Katerina. Jane has just received a letter from Katerina saying she is taking an English course in England. Read Jane’s reply below and answer the following questions. 1. Is it formal or informal? 2. Did she include her address? What is it? 3. When did Jane write this letter? 4. What is her main purpose when writing this letter? Which phrase introduces that purpose? 5. What are the contents of each paragraph? 6. What is the ending of this letter?
43 Riverside Avenue Bedford CP2 1AP April17th, 2003 Dear Katerina, Thanks so much for your letter which arrived yesterday. I’m very happy to hear that you’re coming to England this summer. You said that your English course in Cambridge would last a month, so would you like to come and see us? We have a spare room, so there’s no problem about putting you up, and you’re welcome to stay for as long as you like. We are not going away this summer, so there’s no problem about arranging dates. Please write soon and tell me if you can come. My best wishes to your parents. My parents send their kindest regards. Love, Jane
1. A letter of invitation may have an informal style. More formal invitations
often follow some forms. (See Appendix 3 for examples) 2. The address of the writer as well as the date of the letter is at the top right corner. In an informal letter, the address of the receiver is not needed. 3. The salutation often includes the word “dear” plus the first name of the receiver and followed by a comma. 4. In the first part of a letter of invitation, the purpose of the letter is often stated. The writer should explain the reason for his/her writing and give the invitation. There are various ways of inviting, some examples are: I’d like to invite you to dinner this Saturday. I was wondering if you’d like to come to our house next Friday. We’re going to have a few friends over on Saturday, and we’d love you to come. Would you like to see a movie?
5. In the following part(s), the writer may discuss more about the detailed arrangement for the event, such as time and place, what to prepare and who to come. 6. The last part is for ending the letter. Here, the writer expresses his/her hope that the receiver would be able to accept their invitation. They also often ask for a confirmation from the receiver. 7. There are different ways of closing the letter, some examples are: Love, Best wishes, Cheers, Fondly, Later gator, (See you later, alligator – this is an informal, fun way derived from a children song)
Remember that the closing should also be followed by a comma. Lastly, put or sign your name below the closing.
Study Jenny Marshall’s letter to her friend, Anne. Complete the letter by putting the sentences and phrases in the appropriate places.
………………..1 …………......…2 ………………...3 I have to book the tickets …………………4 …………………5 …………….6 to you for such a long time. I’ve been so busy at the university. But now something has come up that would give us the chance to meet. The university drama department is organizing a trip to Stratford on ………………7 to see Twelfth Night. I know you and Bob ………………8. If I can get two extra tickets. Friday, May 5th 4th April, 2003. Love Dear Anne, 46 Cranford Str., would like to join us London I’m sorry I haven’t written Looking forward to hearing We’re planning to come up by coach on Friday, but NW3 5PQ my new boyfriend, Trevor, lives in Warwick, and his I’d like you to meet Trevor parents have invited me for the weekend. It would be lovely to see you on Saturday if you are free. ……….9 …………….10 by next Friday. Could you let me know before then if you would like to come? In any case, I hope we can meet at the weekend. ……………..11 from you. Love to Bob. ………………12
You are having a dinner party. Write a letter of about 150 words to invite your friend to your party. Your letter should include: • an invitation the arrangement of the party your hope that him/her will accept the invitation about 100 – 120 words
Note: pay attention to articles in your writing.
Use the checklist below to edit your draft.
1. How many indefinite articles (a/an) and definite article (the) are there in your
2. Did you make any mistake using the indefinite and definite articles in your
letter? If yes, what are they and how can you correct them? _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________
3. Does the letter have your address, date of writing and a proper ending?
4. Does the letter cover the three suggested ideas? If not, which should be
Unit 5: Letters of Acceptance & Refusal
GRAMMAR IN FOCUS Space & Time Prepositions
We normally use prepositions in front of nouns or noun phrases, pronouns or gerunds to express a relationship between one person, thing, event, etc. and another.
For example: I gave the book to Charlie
Problems learners may have in the use of prepositions
Many English prepositions have nearly the same meaning: e.g. beside, by, near, next to. Some preposition perform different functions. For example, they express relationships in time (at six o’clock), space (at the bank) and other relationships as well.
Types of prepositions
Prepositions have many different uses; among those the most popular ones are in terms of space and time.
Space: We can consider position in space in relation to:
- a point: at the cinema, at a party, in London - a line: across/along/on a river. - a surface: across/off/on a table - area or volume: in/into/out of/outside/within a room
Time: The prepositions ‘at’, ‘on’, ‘in’ refer not only to space, but also to time.
- Time phrases with ‘at’: exact time: meal times: other points of time: festivals: age: time: at 10 o’clock at lunch time at dawn, at midnight at Christmas, at Easter at the age of 40, at 20 at this time
- Time phrases with ‘on’: days of the week: parts of the day: dates: day + date: particular occasions: anniversaries: festivals: - Time phrases with ‘in’: on Monday on Saturday evening on June 1st on Monday, June 1st on that day on your birthday on New Year’s Day
parts of the day: months: years: seasons: centuries festivals: periods of time:
in the morning in July in 2005 in (the) spring in the 19th century in Ramadan in that age
Complete the note with ‘in’, ‘on’ or ‘at’.
Dear Gordon, Many thanks for agreeing to stay in the flat while I’m in Wales. I enclose the key and here’s the list of what’s where that I promised you: If you lose this key, Mrs Johnson (1)….in…… the flat (2)…………….. the ground floor has a spare. If she’s away, the landlord lives (3)……………... the building (4)……………. the end of the street. It’s called Laurel Villa, and he’s Mr Emerson. They both know you’ll be there while I’m away. The electricity and gas main switches are (5)…………… the wall (6)…… ………. the back of the large cupboard (7)………………. the study. You can turn the water off by the large tap (8)……………….. the corner of the bathroom. I hope you won’t need to. I’ve made a list of all the useful phone numbers I can think of. It’s stuck (9)………………. the kitchen door. I hope you have a good time. Much love, Shirley
Writing Letters of
Acceptance and Refusal
QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS
If you can’t, or prefer not to, thank someone in person or over the phone, for an invitation or offer, then it will be necessary to write a letter, either accepting or refusing. Such letters are quite simple to write, and can be quite short, but not too short, or they will seem impolite! Read the two letters below and answer the following questions. 1. Which reply says ‘Yes’ to the invitation and which one says ‘No’? 2. When will Renata be in Bristol? 3. What does she promise to bring? 4. Would Michael like to attend Margarita’s wedding? Why? 5. What prevents him from coming to the wedding?
A. Renata’s former landlady (in Bristol) has asked Renata to come from Warwick for the weekend, for a party on Saturday night. This is Renata’s reply:
10, Castle Lane Warwick CV14 3BZ June 8th Dear Sybil, It was very nice to get your invitation to spend the weekend after next with you. Luckily I’m completely free then, so I’ll say ‘yes’ – and I’ll be arriving in Bristol at around 9 p.m. on Friday evening. The idea of a party on Saturday sounds marvelous and I promise to bring you a cake for it – a German speciality! Well, see you then. Love, Renata B. Michael has been invited to the wedding in Holland of a Dutch friend. Unfortunately his work commitments make it impossible for him to go to his friend’s wedding. Here is his polite reply. Leyden Brigg Terrace Cachester, Essex Cos 4NZ 25th October Dear Margarita, Thank you for your invitation to your wedding at the beginning of December. I was pleased to learn that you and Franz have decided on ‘something’ at last. Unfortunately, much as I’d like to be at the wedding, especially a Dutch wedding (!), it simply isn’t possible for me to take that weekend off; I have to work fairly late on Friday night, and friends are coming down to stay from Sunday lunchtime so there would be no way in which I could squeeze a wedding in Holland in between. So all I can do is to wish you the happiest of days and also of futures. Love, Michael
1. Accepting invitation:
Accepting an invitation is easy. The person who is invited just show appreciation to the person who has invited them and ask for the details of place and time. In many informal cases, the invited person can bring something along such as a plate of cookies or some fruit even though the host might have said that it was not necessary. Useful expressions for acceptances are: “I’d be very pleased/ delighted/ very happy to come to…/ accept your …” “Your invitation to … is very welcome/ was a lovely surprise…” “Thank you/Thanks for your … The answer is ‘yes’…” 2. Refusing invitation When an invitation is refused, a reason should be given. In general, the sequence is to begin with an apology, then the reason for refusal, and finally thanks for the invitation. Useful expressions for refusals are: Informal: “I’m (very) sorry but I’ll still have to refuse…/I simply can’t make it… “I’m terribly sorry to have to …” more formal: “Thank you for your … but unfortunately …” “It’s not possible for me to …” “I’m quite unable to …”
Now read this invitation and write Richard’s reply. You will find all the words in provided below. Did he say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’?
John and Mary Folkes Are happy to invite ------Richard Wilton-------to an informal cocktail party at Hardside Hall at 8 p.m. on Saturday 22nd November Please reply to Hardside Hall
and not Yours, Mrs Wilton
Mr Richard am you I
your to for
be Paris weekend
as I am
invitation very Dear will
wishes that able
Friends of your hostess whom you’ve got to know in the last few weeks have invited you to dinner next Friday evening. Accept or refuse this invitation.
A girl you know has written to offer you a ticket to Shakespeare’s Hamlet next Friday evening. Write a letter of acceptance or refusal.
A former colleague has written to you from another town in your country and has asked you to spend the weekend with him/her and his/her family. Write a letter of acceptance or refusal.
Note: pay attention to prepositions in your writing.
Use the checklist below to edit your draft. 1. How many preposition are there in your letter?_________________________ 2. Did you make any mistake using prepositions in your letter? If yes, what are they and how can you correct them? _____________________________________________________________ 3. Does the letter have your address, date of writing and a proper ending? _____________________________________________________________ 4. Does the letter cover the suggested ideas for acceptance and refusal? If not, which should be added? _____________________________________________________________
Unit 6: Letters of Complaint
GRAMMAR IN FOCUS
Definition & Classification
Every sentence must have a subject and a verb and must express a complete thought. A word group that lacks a subject or a verb and that does not express a complete thought is a fragment. E.g: - I saw Ann last week. While walking to class. - I spent almost two hours on the phone yesterday. Trying to find the garage to repair my car. - For example, the increase in the cost of renting an apartment. - Many people who get married before they are mature enough.
1. DEPENDENT-WORD FRAGMENTS e.g. Because some students have part-time jobs in addition to going to school. They have very little free time. These are some examples of dependent words: after, because, when, so that, until, even though, since, who, while, how, etc. We can correct a dependent-word fragment by : .
a. (In most cases) attaching it to the sentence that comes after it or the
sentence that comes before it. (Use a comma if a dependent-word group comes at the beginning of a sentence)
Incorrect: After I learned the price of new cars. I decided to keep my old Ford. (1) à Correct: After I learned the price of new cars, I decided to keep my old Ford. Incorrect: My daughter refused to stop smoking. Unless I quit also. (2) à Correct: My daughter refused to stop smoking unless I quit also. b. eliminating the dependent word by rewriting the sentence. (1) à Correct: I learned the price of new cars and decided to keep my old Ford. 2. -ING AND TO FRAGMENTS -Ing and to fragments often lack a subject and part of the verb. e.g. : - I plan on working overtime. To get this job finished. Otherwise my boss may get angry at me. (1)
I spent almost two hours on the phone yesterday. Trying to find a garage to repair my car. (2)
We can correct - ing fragments by a. Attaching the -ing to the sentence that comes before it or the sentence that comes after it, whichever makes sense. (2) à Correct: I spent almost two hours on the phone yesterday, trying to find a garage to repair my car. Incorrect: Having no money and being lonely in the big city. (3) (3) à Correct: She had no money and was lonely in the big city. b. Adding the subject and change the -ing verb part into the correct form of the verb. (1) à Correct: I plan on working overtime. I have to get this job finished. Otherwise, my boss may get angry at me. We can correct To fragments by adding the fragment to the preceding sentence. (1) à Correct: I plan on working overtime to get this job finished. Otherwise, my boss may get angry at me.
3. MISSING - SUBJECT FRAGMENTS e.g.: - The truck skidded on the rain-slick highway. But missed a telephone pole on the side of the road. (1) - Michelle tried each of the appetizers on the table then found that, when the dinner arrived, her appetite was gone. (2) We can correct missing- subject fragments by a. Attaching the fragment to the preceding sentence. (1) à Correct: The truck kidded on the rain-slick highway but missed a telephone pole on the side of the road. b. Adding a subject (which can often be a pronoun standing for the subject in the preceding sentence) (2) à Correct: Michelle tried each of the appetizers on the table. She then found that, when the dinner arrived, her appetite was gone. 4. ADDED-DETAIL FRAGMENTS Added-detail fragments lack a subject and a verb. They often begin with one of the following words: also, especially, except, for example, including , such as … Examples:
The class often starts late. For example, yesterday at quarter after nine instead of at nine sharp. (1) He failed a number of courses before he earned his degree. Among them, English, Economics and General Biology.(2) I love to cook and eat Italian food. Especially spaghetti and pizza.(3)
We can correct added-detail fragments by: a. Rewriting or changing words as necessary so that it has a subject and a verb. (1) à Correct: The class often starts late. For example, yesterday it began at quarter after nine instead of at nine sharp. (2) à Correct: Among the courses he failed before he earned his degree were English, Economics, and General Biology. b. Attaching the fragment to the complete thought that precedes it. (3) à Correct: I love to cook and eat Italian food especially spaghetti and pizza.
Some of the following are complete sentences. Some are fragments - phrases or clauses used instead of sentences.
Correct all the fragments you have found. Then work with your friend(s) to check the result. 1. Although you have convinced me. another candidate. 3. Come with us, we’re sure to have fun. 4. To be a good fellow. 5. Because he couldn't say 'Yes'. 6. There never was a time like the present. 7. Try to do it, you will find it very simple, indeed. 8. Hoping to hear from you. 9. To be thrifty is not easy. 10. Whether you like it or not. 11. The men who will tell you that it is easy to resist such temptations. Don't believe them. Talking sheer nonsense. 12. Because my friend likes base ball, we often go to ball games. 13. 'To be or not to be' isn't an easy question to answer. 14. While you were in the Army having a difficult time of it. 15. Never in my life did I see such a mess. .
2. Since you are unwilling to accept the nomination, we shall have to look for
• • • •
Writing Letters of Complaint
Have you ever written, or wanted to write, a letter to complain
a service (e.g. transport, post, telephone) something you bought (e.g. furniture, toys, household appliances) workmanship (e.g. building, painting, machine repairs) public facilities (e.g. parking, footpaths, roads) officials, parking officers)
• treatment you received (e.g. from shop assistants, government
Writing a letter about these things can be a good way to 'let off steam', but the main aim is to get some action. What action did you want in the above cases? Writing such a letter can take careful preparation, drafting and revising. Discuss the differences between these two letters. Which one is better? Why? LETTER A
7/22 Downer Place Downer. A.C.T. 14/7/88
Dear Sir/Madam, Look at these photos your people developed! How can you expect people to pay for the service you provide? I know it wasn't my fault - everyone says. I'm an excellent photographer. I refuse to pay for this rubbish. I won't stop at this, either. The assistant I spoke to at the counter was very rude as well. You should train your staff to be more helpful and polite. K.Bunt
K. Bunt LETTER B
6/2 Hiller St, Watson. A.C.T. 12/5/88 The Manager, Kwikfilm Pty Ltd, Stacey St, Banks town
Dear Sir / Madam, I am writing to complain about this set of photographs your company developed recently. In my opinion, the photos are an awful colour and are not worth the $12.45 that I paid for them.. The film was new and my camera is a fairly expensive Canon 35mm, SLR manual. So, I don't think the quality of the prints can be blamed on either the equipment or the film. I have enclosed the photos so you can have a look for yourself. I would like the photos reprinted giving a better quality colour, or otherwise a refund of the $12.45. I look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. Yours faithfully, J. Sonnenberg J. Sonnenberg
Keep these points in mind when writing a letter of protest or complaint i) Find out, before you write, who you should address your letter to. Follow the layout and punctuation of formal letter. (see ………….. ). Arrange your points in paragraphs. (This may not be necessary in a very short letter.) Say clearly what you are complaining about. Give exact details in a clear and ordered way. Say clearly what action you expect or want. Be polite, even if you are angry. Don't use insulting language or make personal attacks. Be business-like. Don't be chatty unless it is a short note to someone you know, for example, a neighbour. Keep a copy of your letter. It may be important later to have a record of your complaint. You cannot have such a record if Writing… is an art! you complain in person or on the telephone. Complaining is even . more than an art! Sign off formally. 'Yours faithfully' (Dear Sir/Madam) or 'Yours sincerely' (Dear Mr./Mrs. + surname) are best.
iii) iv) v)
Useful phrases for writing letters of complaint
Beginning: I am writing to complain about ... Further to my letter of May 13th in connection with... I am writing to express my dissatisfaction with... Demand: I would be grateful to receive a cheque for the outstanding sum without further delay. I must insist that you deliver the piano with no further delay and at no additional expense to myself. ... would be appropriate compensation for the inconvenience caused to my family. In view of the many ways in which it did not match the claims made for it in your publicity, I expect a substantial refund. Under the circumstances, I feel that an apology should be offered. Threat (optional): I shall have no alternative but to put the matter in the hands of my solicitors should your cheque not be received by May 1st. Unless I hear from you within ten days, I shall have to take legal advice on the matter. If I do not hear from you before 3 May, I shall be obliged to take matters a step further.
A. Fill the gaps in this letter with words from the list: convenient grateful repair guarantee carry out found replaced arrange bought appear faithfully assured
6/2 Hiller St, Watson. A.C.T. 12/5/88
Dear Sir/Madam, Repair to washing machine On December 2nd your maintenance man called at my home to (1)______ the washing machine, a Wytaswyt Aquaslosh which I (2)_____ from you on January 7th of this year and which is still under (3)_____. When your man finished, he (4)_____ me that the machine was now working. The following day I tried to use the machine but (5)_____ that it was still not working properly. Again, it flooded the kitchen. I know little about these machines, but the problems (6)_____ to be that the rubber seal around the door needs to be (7)_____. I should be (8)_____ if you would (9)_____ for a competent person to call and (10)_____ the necessary repairs. A convenient time for me would be Thursday or Friday morning, Dec 11 or 12, anytime between 8 and 12. Please telephone me immediately if these times are not (11)_____. Yours (12)_____,
B. Expand these notes into full letter of complaint. As you write it out, divide it into paragraphs.
Re: Holiday No.231 I write/ complain/ recent skiing holiday/ I book/ your company. From the first day/ go wrong. The hotel I stay/ be very disappointing/ there be no room service/ nothing seem/ work properly. What be worse be/ the resort be not suitable/ beginners/ me. On the third day I bring my complaints/ the attention/ your representative/ say he/ look into them. Nothing happen/ the day before I leave/ I give a special room. I not satisfy/ the holiday/ the service I receive/ your representative. I now write/ ask/ full refund. I look forward/ receive a cheque for $950/ you.
Write the complete letter down here: ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________
Choose one of the following situations and write up the draft of the letter in 120-150 words. 1. You invited a foreign friend to a restaurant in order to introduce Vietnamese food to him/her. However, what you and your friend experienced was far from your expectations and opposed to what had been advertised in publicity: the meal was awful and the service was poor. Write a letter of complaint to the manager of the restaurant. (Make notes of the words and phrases you can use to describe the meal and the service. Did you complain while you were there? Who did you speak to? What did they do?) 2. The library where you and your friends go to borrow books has a number of problems. Write and complain to those in charge.
Use the checklist below to edit your draft.
1. Does the letter contain any fragments? Could you point out and correct
2. Is the letter persuasive and polite enough?
3. Did it include a beginning, demand and a threat (optional)?
Unit 7: LETTERS OF REQUEST AND ENQUIRY
GRAMMAR IN FOCUS
1. What? 2. When to appear? 3. How to avoid?
What is a run-on sentence?
A RUN-ON SENTENCE has at least two parts, each of which can stand by itself; yet have been improperly connected by the inappropriate use of punctuation and connectors. The length of a sentence is not related to whether it is a run-on or not. E.g. The sun is high, put on some sun block. (Wrong) Put on some sun block because the sun is high. (Right)
When do run-on sentences appear?
Typically, run-on sentences happen…
a. When an independent clause gives an order or directive based on what was said in the prior independent clause:
E.g. This next chapter has a lot of difficult information in it, you should
start studying right away. b. When two independent clauses are connected by a transitional expression (conjunctive adverb) such as however, moreover, nevertheless. E.g. Mr. Nguyen has sent his four children to ivy-league colleges, however, he has sacrificed his health working day and night in that dusty bakery.
c. When the second of two independent clauses contains a pronoun that connects it to the first independent clause. E.g. This computer doesn't make sense to me, it came without a manual.
How can run-on sentences be avoided?
- Carefulness - Proper use of punctuation - Appropriate use of sentence connector
Exercise 1: Repair the following run-on sentences by replacing the
comma with an appropriate punctuation
1. Entrepreneurship is the study of small businesses, college students are embracing it enthusiastically. 2. My father is chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, he also heads the Warrant Commission. 3. All over the country, people sell products over the Internet, these people are making impressive profits. 4. One person had been exporting farm equipment, in fact he exports over 30,000 pieces of machinery a year. 5. After the sixth inning, I went home, my family stayed. 6. Formal courses at the graduate level are now being taken by many elderly citizens, some schools even offer them special programs. 7. I believe that the teacher has been grading me unfairly, all she does is look for minor mistakes. 8. Even though the semester is almost over, the teacher does not know my name, she confuses me with other students.
Exercise 2: Choose the most suitable option to repair the following
1. Judy leads a charmed life she never seems to have a serious accident. A, this sentence is correct B, life, she 2. The airport is about to shut down because of the snow and if the plane doesn't land soon it will have to go on to Boston. A, this sentence is correct B, snow, and 3. The show begins at 7:30 make sure you're there before 7:15. A, this sentence is correct B, 7:30, make C, 7:30. Make 4. Marcellino always knew his way around the woods this is something he could always depend on. A, this sentence is correct B, wood; this 5. Having prepared himself well for the realtor exams and having exhausted everyone in the family with his requests that someone help him with the true-and-false drills, Jeffrey, who had never been a particularly good student in high school, knew he was ready to take on the greatest challenge of his life. A, this sentence is correct B, drills; Jeffrey C, Jeffrey - who had never been a particularly good student in high school - knew C, wood, this C, snow; and D, snow. And C, life; she
6. Throughout history money and religion were closely linked there was little distinction between government and religion. A, this sentence is correct B, linked because there was…. C, linked, there was… 7. The head of state and the religious leader were often the same person all power rested in one ruler. A, this sentence is correct B, person, all C, person; all 8. These powerful leaders decided what objects would serve as money their backing encouraged public faith in the money. A, this sentence is correct B, money. Their C, money, their 9. Coins were minted of precious metals the religious overtones of money were then strengthened. A, this sentence is correct B, metals, the C, When coins were minted of precious metals, the . . . .
LETTERS REQUEST AND ENQUIRY
Jenny wants to apply for a course from Camford Polytechnic. Work in group to help her find out what kind of information she needs. What should she do to ask for such information? Study the two following letters:
Calle Mallorra 34, OS061 Valencia March 20th 2003 The Director of Courses, Camford Polytechnic, Camford CM2 8JT Dear Sir: I am writing to you with reference to your advertisement in the ELT Monthly for one-month courses in English at the Polytechnic this summer. I would be grateful if you would send me further information on these courses, indicating the timetable and the fees. I am particularly interested in Business English and would like to know how much time is spent on this option everyday. Could you also give me details of accommodation? Are the students lodged at the Polytechnic or with families outside? I would also like to know whether groups of students with the same first language are lodged together or whether it is possible to meet others from different language backgrounds. I look forward to hearing from you. Yours faithfully, Jenny Thompson Jenny Thompson The Director of Courses, Camford Polytechnic, Camford CM2 8JT
Calle Mallorra 34, OS061 Valencia March 20th 2003
Dear the Director, I want to write to you and ask for some information. I think I need to know about the timetable and the fees, how about Business English, the course that I love most, how much time is spent on studying it everyday, do you know? Details of accommodation are important, too. Are the students lodged at the Polytechnic or with families outside? Remember to tell me whether groups of students with the same first language are lodged together or whether it is possible to meet others from different language backgrounds. Can’t wait for your reply any more! With love, Jenny Thompson Jenny Thompson
Questions for analysis:
1. If you are the receiver of the letter, which one do you prefer? Why? 2. If you have to write a similar letter, then…
What kind of letter should it be? Formal or informal? What kind of language should you use? Should it be long or short? How should the letter be presented?
Definition: the type of letter that is sent to a company/ an organization to request some information.
Your street address Your City, State Zip code Your country
Separate the Date from Country by one line
Date Recipient’s name Street address City, State Zip code Country
Use the colon, not comma
Dear Sir or Madam: Paragraph 1
Remember to indent the first line of each paragraph
Paragraph 2 Paragraph 3 Paragraph 4
Choose either Yours faithfully (Dear Sir/ Madam) or Yours sincerely (Dear Mr./Mrs. + Surname)
Yours faithfully, Signature Name
Your street address Your City, State Zip code Your country
Separate your information and recipient’s one by one line
Receiver’s name Street address City, State Zip code Country Date Dear Sir or Madam: Paragraph 1 Paragraph 2 Paragraph 3 Paragraph 4
Left-align details about you and recipient Use the colon, not comma Don’t indent the first line of any paragraph
Choose either Yours faithfully (Dear Sir/ Madam) or Yours sincerely (Dear Mr./Mrs. + Surname)
Yours faithfully, Signature Name
Necessary details and information Concise and hitting the point
Simple and formal Short, grammatically correct sentences. Run-on avoidance Proper use of punctuation
The first paragraph: Clarification of sources from which you learnt about information The second paragraph: Introduction yourself/ your organization The third paragraph: The action you ask organization to take The forth paragraph: Conventional ending
the the of the
Be organized! List down all the information you want to include before you actually begin to write. Be clear! Make out the addresses, the subjects and the aims of writing the letter. Be careful! Remember to include any particular questions that you want to ask because you may not have the chance to ask them again. Be neat and tidy! Type out the letter and pay attention to the standard format and style. If it is necessary to hand-write, write it as clear and smart as possible in the appropriate style and layout.
Things to rememb er
Complete Anne Morley’s letter to Jim Courtney, choosing from the alternatives given in the right-hand column.
18Greville Avenue, Norwich NR4 3CK Mr. Jim Courtney, 193 Winsford Road, London SW19 4WH April 17th, 2003 Dear (1)______, I (2) ______ you (3) ______ your (4) ______ for adventure holidays for young people in the Observer. I (5) ______ grateful (6) ______ send me (7) ______ information about them. I am particularly interested (8) ______ your holidays in Asia. (9) ______ you give me details of dates of departure and costs? I (10) ______ some advice about arrangements I (11) ______ to (12) ______ before joining the group, (13) ______ visas required for different countries and certificates of inoculation against diseases. I look forward to (14) ______ from you. Yours (15) ______ , Anne Morley
a) Mr. Courtney a) am writing to a) for a) advertisement a) am a) if you would a) another a) in a) Could a) also wish a) needed a) do a) as a) hear 15. a) faithfully
b) Sir b) write b) in connection with b) announcement b) would be b) that you b) further b) on b) Please b) would also like b) would need b) make b) such as b) hearing b) sincerely
Choose one of the following topics to write a letter of enquiry.
Star Master Tour
Special program for a visit to Australia
Contact: Star Master Tour 490 La Trobe Street Melbourne, Victoria 3000 Australia (Source: Travel Magazine)
English course of Elementary At: British Council Hanoi 40 Cat Linh Dong Da, Ha Noi Vietnam (Source: Hoa Hoc Tro magazine)
1. You are going to visit England and would like to go to a Shakespeare play in Stratford. Write to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. (Dates of visit, plays, price of tickets- advance booking, payment in advance). 2. You want to take an examination in English. Write to the British Council in your country, asking for information (dates, costs, papers in examination, registration in advance, entrance forms, payment by post). 3. You are taking part in a project at school studying different towns in England. Write to a British Council library for information. (Books in library, obtainable from other libraries – borrowing conditions, payment, post). Your letter should… - follow the suggested layout - cover necessary information - hand-write legibly - avoid the use of run-on sentences
1. Is there any spelling mistake in the letter? How many? ____________________________________________________________ 2. Are sentences short and grammatically correct? Which one(s) is wrong? ______________________________________________________________
3. How many run-on sentences are there in the letter? ______________________________________________________________ 4. Has the writer adapted the right format for his/her letter? ______________________________________________________________ 5. Does the letter follow the right layout? ______________________________________________________________ 6. Is the letter concise? Is there any unnecessary/ irrelevant information included in the letter? ______________________________________________________________
7. If you are the receiver, do you want to reply to such a letter? Why? ______________________________________________________________
Unit 8: CVs and Letters of Application
Grammar in focus
& Different types of punctuation
Punctuation is the system of symbols ( . , ! - : ) that we use to separate sentences and parts of sentences, and to make their meaning clear. Each symbol is called a "punctuation mark". An English teacher wrote these words on the whiteboard: "woman without her man is nothing". The teacher then asked the students to punctuate the words correctly. The men wrote: "Woman, without her man, is nothing." The women wrote: "Woman, without her, man is nothing." Summary of Punctuation Marks Mark Name Basic usage ends a sentence signals an abbreviation. signals a direct Example I like English. Tues., i.e., etc. What are you writing? Mr., a.m.,
full stop / period question
question. mark expresses uncertainty in a sentence that is a statement. expresses a “She jumped in?” he wondered.
exclamation mark/point -
What a nice cake surprising, amazing, for my birthday! or extraordinary statement. expresses a strong emotion. separates 3 or more items in a list separates parts of a compound sentence. "Help!" she cried. "I'm drowning!" I speak English,
French and Thai. He frowned, but she did not understand why he was worried.
separates a special
In those days, the
from the word or phrase from journey country to the city was the rest of a sentence. : colon introduces a formal statement (an explanation, an long or formal quotation. introduces a list. not easy.
have or lose
choices: finish the work today,
announcement) or a contract. I need to buy some furniture: a table, a bed, and two chairs.
salutation formal letter. separates and
hours minutes, Dear Ms. Newman:
biblical chapter and verse, the city of publication and the publishing company in bibliographic and citations footnotes.
10:45, John 4:11 Boston: Bacon David has had plenty of experience as a pipe fitter; hasn’t done much welding. however, he Allyn &
connects clauses (it is used before a conjunctive
replaces a period when sentences closely related.
My friend couldn’t
two have been involved in are the incident; he was out of town on that day pre-war, law, father-in-
used with prefixes, in compound nouns and adjectives, in
out-of-date, twenty-one, two-
used to set off appositive phrases
In each town — London, Paris and
Rome — we stayed in used in informal writing instead of full stops, commas, brackets youth hostels. This is the place for a holiday – sun, surf, good food, etc.
quotation " ' marks apostrophe
used in directed speech
"I love you," she said.
used to show ownership or possession
This is John's car.
used to enclose extra information: an example, a comment or an explanation.
I went to Bangkok (my favourite city) and stayed there for two weeks.
used to show that you have out something quotation.
left customer wrote: "This is of the best program...that I have ever seen."
1. Add or delete punctuations where necessary in the following sentences. If a sentence is correct, write “correct” after it. a. This summer we hiked in the White Mountains and canoed the Sacra River into Maine b. The man at the next table complained loudly and the waiter stomped off in disgust. c. My brother George worked as a congressional aide last summer. d. Love is blind; envy has its eye wide open. e. He received two A’s, three B’s, and a C. f. Fire and Ice is one of Robert Frost’s most famous poems. please everyone h. Writing consists of three stages pre-writing while-writing and post-writing. i. j. Cancer – a disease that strikes without regard to age, race, or religion and causes dread in the most stalwart person, had struck my family. Three fourths of the House voted for the amendment. g. Bill Cosby said I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to
2. Using end punctuation A. The sentences in the following passage all lack end punctuation. In the space provided, write the correct mark of end punctuation for each sentence. Study the example below first. Example: The telephone company indicated that the phones wouldn’t be repaired for a month. When I was eight years old, my family and I moved into an apartment where no pets were allowed_____ (1) My parents knew that my sister and I were disappointed, but what choice did they have _____ (2) After a few weeks, my father discovered that the people next door had a cat and that the people upstairs had a poodle _____(4) Then he found out that the lady who lived on the top floor had a rabbit, a Gila monster, and a monkey_____(5) What a zoo _____ (6) We
finally ended up getting a parakeet _____(7) After all, we reasoned, if all these people could conceal pets in their apartments, why couldn’t we _____ (8) B. Rewrite the following text. First, decide which parts to put in direct speech, then add all the necessary punctuation, not forgetting speech marks.
An embarrassing incident
One summer job I had as a student was in a rather exclusive restaurant in Glasgow on this particular day we were expecting forty members of a football club for lunch I had to peel the potatoes I thought I was managing quite well with my small knife until the owner appeared are those all the potatoes youve peeled she complained why didnt you use the potato peeler i had no idea what a potato peeler was so she led me into a small room behind the main kitchen and showed me a small machine which looked rather like the rubbish bins some people have in their bathrooms you put the potatoes in close the lid press the button thats all she explained as if to a small child ten minutes later she came back I really think its quicker to do them by hand i said what do you mean she asked well they arent ready yet you can imagine how i felt when she lifted the lid and took out the potatoes the size of peas the potato peeler was not automatic.
1. CV - Overview
CVs and letters of application
A CV (curriculum vitae) is a short written description of a person’s education and past employment, used especially when he/she is looking for a job or a new job. A CV is like an advertisement for yourself. If it fails to interest the reader, you will not have further opportunities to convince the company to consider you for employment. A CV is also called “resumé” or biodata. It should be included as an enclosure with your application letter. The CV should present the most important things in your background and all your qualifications for employment. The CV should be written before your application letter because it will be a good outline for deciding which information should be included in the application letter. For most students just graduating from university, a one-page resumé is usually long enough. It is important that you include only necessary information. Your CV will not be effective if it includes too much information or unnecessary facts. 2. Main sections of a CV Note: You can add other sections as required or change the ordering of later sections to suit your skills and abilities.
This should be a short summary of your experience, skills and abilities, and be contained in four to six lines of text.
• Only list the attributes that will be of interest to an employer.
• List 3 to 6 achievements which you feel will be in line with your next
• Do not list achievements which are not in line with what you want to do
• Start with the strongest point in your favour and then work backwards from
• List the most recent education first. • Give the years you attended and the degree you received and your major field of
• Show the specific courses you took which you think will be helpful in the
work you are applying for beneath your university listing.
Special qualifications (This section is optional)
• Mention special skills such as: language ability, writing ability, artistic ability,
or research in a specific field.
• Show any of experience you have had: This should be in reverse
chronological order, starting with your most recent job and working backwards.
• Start with the strongest point in your favour and then work backwards when
you are describing your experience for each position.
- Dates of emloyment - Firm’s name and address - Type of work performed
• Include date of birth, marital status (you may leave this out if you want to), and driving
• Keep this part fairly short.
You should include two referees, one of which should be an academic reference, e.g. your personal tutor, while the second reference could be from an employer you have worked for. 3. Useful language for CV writing Work history
... to boost productivity ... to increase efficiency Carried out extensive research in ... Chosen to ... Co-ordinated ... Dealt with ... customers on a daily/weekly basis Delivered high standards of ...
Improved ... Managed and motivated ... Prepared ... presentations and reports for ... Reduced ... Reported to ... Responsible for ... Successfully achieved ... Successfully implemented ...
Developed and implemented ... processes and procedures to ... Developed relationships with ... Established ... Gained in-depth knowledge and experience of ...
Successfully increased ... Successfully introduced ... Successfully led ... Successfully negotiated with ...
Academic qualifications obtained Scholarships or sponsorships awarded Professional qualifications attained Publications
Dissertation: ... Anticipated date of graduation is ... Continuing education classes in ...
Speak fluent ... Highly PC literate Expert level ... Chartered ... Full clean UK driving licence
Awards Publications Membership of relevant bodies Computing skills/knowledge Typing skills
4. SAMPLE CV
B. Application letter (Cover letter)
Questions for analysis: Read the sample of application letter below and answer the following questions: 1. What are the main parts of an application letter and what are the purpose of them? 2. How should you begin and end the letter? This is an advertisement for the position of secretary, found in the Bankok
Post of November 11, 1997. The letter of application follow the next page.
1. Organization Generally, the letter is organized and presented in three parts:
• The opening paragraph: Tells specifically which job interests you (get the
job title exactly). If the job opening was advertised, mention where you saw it.
• The body paragraphs (2 – 3 paragraphs): Describes your relevant
qualifications for the the job. State your present position if your are currently employed. In addition, mention previous experience and educational background (if you are a recent graduate) and why you are interested in the job. Be positive, confident and enthusiastic.
• The closing paragraph: Is closed with a paragraph requesting an application
form and/or an interview. Thank the reader and tell him how you may be contacted. 2. Useful phrases
Salutation Dear + Mr./Mrs./Ms/Miss + Surname, if you know the name of the person Dear + Sir/Madam/Sir or Madam/Sirs, or Gentlemen, or Sir/s, if you do not know the name of the person
The opening paragraph
I wish to apply for the post of… which was advertised in today’s Daily Telegraph. With reference to your advertisement in the “Guardian” of January 5 th, I should like to apply for the position of…
The body paragraphs
As you will see from my enclosed CV, I have four years’ experience in hotels and catering At present, I am employed as a… by the local Tourist Office, a position I have held for three years. In the course of my present job, I have been responsible for the planning and organization of… My duties have included secretarial work as well as… I graduated in Business Administration from Dundee University in 1990. I was employed as a cashier with Barclays Bank from 1988 to 1992. I attended the Lycée Paul Bert, where I obtained practical training in all aspects of the catering trade. I am used to working under pressure / working to a deadline / working as part of a team. I am familiar with Word for Windows / recent developments in the industry… I also have some knowledge of accountancy, having kept the books for my father’s business…
The closing paragraph
I believe the post you offer will give me the opportunity to … I am especially keen to work in an organization such as yours which has a reputation for… I feel that my present position offers little prospect of promotion I will be glad to supply you with any further information you may need. … have agreed to act as my referees.
Sincerely yours, Yours sincerely,
Look at the following job advertisements. Choose one that interests you most and write a CV and a letter of application (cover letter) applying for the position.
Use the checklist below to edit your draft. For CV: 1. Is the layout of the CV appropriate? ________________________________________________________________ 2. Is the language used in the CV appropriate? Can you give specific examples? ________________________________________________________________
3. Are there any grammar mistakes in this CV?
________________________________________________________________ 4. Are there any spelling mistakes in the CV? ________________________________________________________________ 5. Is the CV persuasive enough for the position? ________________________________________________________________ For letters of application: 1. Is the layout of the letter appropriate? ________________________________________________________________ 2. Is the language used in the letter formal? Can you give specific examples? ________________________________________________________________ 3. Have you used useful language for cover letter in your letter? ________________________________________________________________
4. Are there any grammar mistakes in this CV?
________________________________________________________________ 5. Are there any spelling mistakes in the CV? ________________________________________________________________ 6. Is the CV persuasive enough for the position? ________________________________________________________________ 7. Do you find your letter persuasive enough? ________________________________________________________________
Unit 9: DESCRIBING A PLACE
Grammar in focus
Synonyms & Antonyms
What are synonyms? Synonyms are words that have different pronunciations and spelling but similar meanings. They belong to the same part of speech. Example: to die (v) – to pass away (v) – to kick the bucket (v) Synonyms are often used in writing to reduce repetition. However, when using synonyms, the formality of the words needs to be considered. In the above example: To die – neutral To pass away – formal To kick the bucket – highly informal Misuse of informal synonyms in formal contexts may cause serious offence to the readers. What are antonyms? Antonyms are words that have opposite meanings. They belong to the same part of speech. Example: long – short / old – young / selfish – unselfish
Many words do not have antonyms, such as: house, to see, book, to feel, etc. Some antonyms are completely different words. old – young to give – to take war – peace Some antonyms are formed by derivation, i.e. they come from the same roots but their affixes change their meanings. like – dislike useful – useless
Exercise 1: Supply the right opposites
1. dry paint 2. weak tea 3. tough meat 4. salt water 5. a dead person 6. a single person 7. an open door 8. a loud voice 9. a sick person 10. fresh food
..................... paint ..................... tea ..................... meat ..................... water a ..................... person a ..................... person a ..................... door a ..................... voice a ..................... person ..................... food.
Exercise 2: Choose the correct words in the brackets to complete the following text.
We spent our first day in Kathmandu and took a sightseeing tour around this (dull / fascinating) city. The Nepalese people are very (friendly / cold) and there is almost no crime here. But don’t expect a(n) (exciting / quiet) night life, because 99 per cent of the population are in bed by 10 pm, and there are no nightclubs.
We needed our sleep, however, because by seven o’clock the next morning we were already travelling to the River Trisuli. Here we began a (normal / dramatic) journey by boat through the Trisuli rapids. It was heart-stopping – the most (exciting / boring) experience of my whole life. For mile after mile the white water threw our (big / small) boat from side to side. Then suddenly we arrived in the (rough / calm) water of a beautiful lake.
Describing a place
WARM-UP Look at this list of places. How many can you find in your hometown? Compare with a partner. …. church …. cinema …. market …. library …. school …. bank …. café …. hotel BRAINSTORMING Interview your friend about his or her hometown. Ask the underlined questions below. Listen carefully to the answers. Some questions about your hometown 1. What is the name of your hometown? …. temple …. museum …. supermarket …. night club …. cathedral …. park …. hospital …. theatre
2. In what part of your country is it?
3. Describe the geography of your hometown. Is it flat / hilly / in the
mountain / in a valley / in a desert / on the coast? Is the land rocky / sandy / good for farming / good for ranching? Are there trees? Is there a river or a lake nearby? Is there a good harbor for ships?
4. Describe the weather and climate. How many seasons are there? What is
the weather and temperature in each season? Does it rain or snow? How much? What is the best time of year? 5. How many people live in your hometown?
6. What are the common occupations? What do most people do for a living?
What are the principal industries and products? 7. What do people do for entertainment?
8. Is your hometown a good place to visit? Why or why not? What should a
tourist see there? What is your hometown famous for?
9. What do you like about your hometown? What do you dislike about it?
Does it have any problems? If so, what are they? 10. On the whole, is it a good place to live? QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS Read this description of a small town in Brittany, and answer the following questions. a. What do the inhabitants in Chateauneuf do? b. How far is Quimper? c. How many hotels are there?
My favorite place
Chateauneuf is in the centre of Brittany in northwest France and is on a hill overlooking a river. Most of the inhabitants are farmers or shopkeepers but there are a few businessmen who work in Quimper which is 22 kilometers away. Everybody lives in stone houses or cottages love the with whitewashed and walls. the I’ve visited people. Chateauneuf every Easter for six years now because I atmosphere friendly Chateauneuf is not on the coast so it hasn’t been spoilt by tourists. There are two small hotels where you can eat traditional French food quite cheaply. At Easter, Chateauneuf has a festival of traditional Breton music. If you are in Brittany, book into the Gai Logis Hotel. Try the local food and then go for a walk along the river bank. You won’t regret it!
When describing the location of places, use: There is + noun (singular) or There are + noun (plural) To provide more information, use relative pronouns: which … who ….
where… when…. why…. e.g.: There are two small hotels where you can eat traditional French food quite cheaply.
Now use the information in warm-up to write 5 sentences about places in your hometown, using relative pronouns and there are …; there is …
1……………………………………………………………… …..............................................………………………………………………………… …………………………..... 2……………………………………………………………… …..............................................………………………………………………………… …………………………..... 3……………………………………………………………… …..............................................………………………………………………………… …………………………..... 4……………………………………………………………… …..............................................………………………………………………………… …………………………..... 5……………………………………………………………… …..............................................………………………………………………………… …………………………..... Exchange your work and check with a partner for any grammar or spelling error.
Revising: My City Stanley wrote the first draft of a composition called “My City”. He read it several times. He wasn’t sure about it, so he wrote another draft. Read his drafts, and answer the questions. 1. How are the drafts alike? ……………………………………………………… …………….. 2. How are the drafts different?........................................................................................... 3. Which draft is better? Why?............................................................................................ Draft A My City
My city’s name is Athens. It has good geography and good weather. For example, the climate is nice. It is a big city. Many people live in Athens. They work there in many things, such as different occupations and different industries. The people enjoy different entertainment. They like to do different things for fun and relaxation. I like my city because it has many famous things to see. It also has many museums and good places to visit. In general, all tourists like my city very much. For instance, they like the well-known places to visit. I love my city because it is a good place to live, work, and play.
Draft B My City
My city’s name is Athens. In my city there are four seasons. The best time of year is spring. In Athens live three million people. Most of them work in offices, factories and stores. My city is a good place to visit because the weather is very good, the people are very friendly, and there are many exciting places for tourists. Athens has many museums. It also has famous things to see. Two examples are the Acropolis and the Parthenon. because My city is also well known as many famous people, such
Socrates, Aristotle, and Pericles, lived there.
Describe your hometown. Note:
Length: 120 -150 words. Select outstanding features of your hometown Use the structures in writing techniques. Pay particular attention to their synonyms and antonyms
Use the checklist below to check your writing. 1. What is the name of your hometown? _____________________________________________________________ 2. What features of the town did you describe? _____________________________________________________________ 3. Do you think it is a good place to live? Do you want to visit it? _____________________________________________________________ 4. What points do you like the least in your description? Why? _____________________________________________________________ 5. Did you use interesting adjectives with their synonyms and/or antonyms? _____________________________________________________________
Unit 10: DESCRIBING A PERSON
Grammar in focus RELATIVE CLAUSES
There are various ways of supplying more information about a noun in English. Frequently we use adjectives (e.g.: a helpful teacher) and often other nouns (e.g.: a university teacher). Relative clauses are another very common way of supplying more specific information about a noun referring to a person, thing or group. Relative clauses are most commonly positioned immediately after the noun that they refer to, and often begin with who, that, which, where, when, or why.
Who / Which / That
Who is used to refer to people, which is used to refer to things, and that is used to refer to people or things. Do you know the young boy/girl that offered you a seat? They were the builders who fitted our kitchen. Note: Relative clauses can also be used after some pronouns. They are quite common after indefinite pronouns such as something, someone, anything, anyone, everything and everyone. Anna is someone that I really admire.
Is there anyone who knows how this machine works? Everyone who has worked with her will miss her very much.
Relative clauses are also sometimes used after words like some, many, much, all, or those which can function as pronouns. Like many who were taking the exam, I felt very nervous. A small bar of chocolate was all that we had to eat. When / Where / Why / Whose
When can be used as a relative adverb in a relative clause after the word ‘time’ or other nouns which denote periods of time such as year, day, summer, etc. I remember the day when I first met her. Where can be used as a relative adverb in a relative clause after the word ‘place’ or other nouns which denote places such as house, street, room, etc. This is the room where my grandfather was born. Note: Place names (e.g.: proper nouns such as Manchester) are never followed by the relative adverb where.
Where can also be used after some specific nouns such as situation, point and stage. Eventually I reached a stage where I began to enjoy my work. Why can be used as a relative adverb after the noun reason.
That’s the reason why I left my job.
Whose can be used to talk about something which belongs to a person or an animal, or something or someone that is associated with a person. Help is needed for families whose homes were flooded. Note: The relative pronoun whose can sometimes be used to refer to countries, organizations or other nouns which imply a group of people. I’d prefer to use a bank whose services are reliable. Register note
In formal English in particular, relative adverbs when and where are sometimes replaced by a preposition + which. I remember the day on which I first met her. The relative pronoun that or the zero relative pronoun can also be used after reason instead of why.
That’s the reason that I left my job.
DEFINING AND NON-DEFINING RELATIVE CLAUSES
Defining relative clause supplies information which is needed in order to identify a particular person or thing - they define exactly who or what we are referring to.
Non-defining relative clause gives additional information about a person or thing. This clause is separated from the noun by a comma. Unlike in a defining relative clause, this information is not absolutely necessary in order to identify who or what we are talking about, it does not define, but adds information.
I could see two girls standing on the platform. The girl who was carrying a small child got onto the train. (defining relative clause) I could see two girls standing on the platform. One of the girls, who was carrying a small child, got onto the train. (non-defining relative clause)
Non-defining relative clauses have a variety of uses in written English. As well as adding descriptive information, they are often used to indicate that one event happened after another.
She called out to the man, who ran off. I picked up the model, which fell apart in my hands.
Sometimes non-defining relative clauses are used to make a comment about the whole situation described in a main clause, rather than someone or something mentioned within it.
She felt really nervous about the interview, which was understandable.
PARTICIPLE RELATIVE CLAUSES
-ing participle clauses
Present and past participle forms, (e.g.: talking, made) can be used without a pronoun or auxiliary to form a participle relative clause.
Do you know the boy talking to Thomas?
The participle relative clause underlined in the example has the same meaning as a defining relative clause with the relative pronoun who.
Do you know the boy who is talking to Thomas?
-ing participle clauses also often show what someone or something is, or was, doing at a particular time.
Who were those children waiting outside? (= … who were waiting outside...)
–ed participle clauses
Participle relative clauses with an –ed (past participle) form are also used like defining relative clauses to identify a particular person or thing. They have a passive meaning.
All cakes sold in the café are made on the premises. (= which are sold in the café …)
It is also possible to use participle relative clauses as non-defining relative clauses which add information. Like other non-defining relative clauses, these participle clauses are surrounded by commas.
His first novel, published in 1965, was an immediate success. (= which was published in 1965…)
1. Who’s (is)…Who’s (has)….or Whose? 1. The receptionist is the person /hu:z/ responsible for reservations. 2. Do you know anybody /hu:z/ worked in a hotel? 3. There is a 10% discount for guests /hu:z/ reservations are made on the Internet. 4. Is there anybody in the class /hu:z/ stayed in a luxury hotel? 5. /hu:z/ luggage is this? 6. That’s the guest /hu:z/ plane arrived late. 7. The hotel manager, /hu:z/ not here today, is the person you need to talk to. 2. Read the sentences. Then decide which option, a or b, is correct. 1. My sister, who lives in Los Angeles, is a designer. a) I have one sister. b) I have more than one sister. 2. The athletes who tested positive for doping were suspended. a) All the athletes tested positive for doping. b) Some athletes didn’t test positive for doping.
3. Flat screen televisions, which are very expensive, have a better image quality. a) All flat screen televisions are very expensive. b) Some flat screen televisions are cheap. 4. The teachers at this school who arrive late for class will be suspended. a) Only some teachers arrive late for class. b) All the teachers in the school arrive late for class. 5. The company president who works in Berlin is moving to London. a) There is only one company president. b) There is more than one company president. 3. Life changing moments Can you remember... A day when you made a big decision? A person who had a big influence on you as a child? A place where you learnt something very important? A reason why you have your current job? A reason why you didn’t choose a different career? A time when you had to choose between two important things? A moment when you felt that history had been made? A time when you didn’t worry about the future? A place where you met someone very important to you?
Choose three of these memories and tell a partner about them. Example: I remember the place where I first met my wife very well. It was a...
4. Complete the blanks with information that is true for you. ___ is the day in my country when _______________________________. ___ is a person I know who _____________________________________. ___ is the room in my house where _______________________________. ___ is a time of year when ______________________________________. ___ is the part of my town where _________________________________. ___ is the reason why __________________________________________. Now rewrite the words from the first column on a blank piece of paper. Work with a partner. Show the words to your partner, but not the sentences. Can he/she guess why these things are important?
Describing a person
Think of someone in your family. Write three sentences about him/her. Read your sentences aloud to the rest of the class. Which relative did you choose? Why did you choose person? Did you write about their character, appearance or both?
Sample: Read the description of Aunt Emily and answer the questions followed: My Aunt Emily
Of all my relatives, I like my aunt Emily the best. She’s my mother’s youngest sister. She has never married, and she lives alone in a small village near Bath. She is in her late fifties, but she’s still quite young in spirit. She has a fair complexion, thick brown hair which she wears in a bun, and dark brown eyes, She has a kind face, and when you meet her, the first thing you notice is her lovely warm smile. Her face is a little wrinkled now, but I think she is still rather attractive. She is the sort of person you can always go to if you have a problem. She likes reading and gardening, and she goes for long walks over the hills with her dog, Buster. She’s a very active person. Either she’s making something, or mending something, or doing something to help others. She does the shopping for some of the old people in the village. She is extremely generous, but not very tolerant with people who don’t agree with her. I hope that I am as happy and contented as she is when I’m her age.
Questions for analysis: 1. What about Aunt Emily does the author describe? 2. Does the author describe Aunt Emily in details? 3. Should we describe the person’s weakpoints or we just mention his/her strong points?
A. Describing appearance
1. Using adverbs in person description 1.1. Find the following words in the text: quite, a little, rather, very, extremely. How do they change the meaning of the adjectives which follow them?
1.2. Put the adverbs in order from the weakest to the strongest: weakest ---------------------------------------------------------------------à strongest really fairly not very very
Match an adverb from the list above to one of the adjectives in exercises 1 and 2, then write a sentence to rephrase the sentences below. Example: She is 97 years old: She’s extremely old OR she is very elderly. 1. She’s the most beautiful woman in the world. 2. He is an Olympic weightlifter. 3. She will only eat one piece of fruit a day, and nothing else. 4. Since I stopped cycling to work, I’ve put on a bit of weight. 5. Frank is the best-looking man in the world. Absolutely only goes with one adjective from exercises 1 and 2. Which adjective? Why? 2. Using polite structure in person description The sentence “She is not tolerant” is a nice way of saying she is “intolerant”. Sometimes, we try to be polite by not using a negative adjective. We can say not very + the opposite adjective. Use a tactful way to describe a person who is: a. rude b. boring c. mean d. ugly e. cruel f. stupid
3. Using adjectives in person description 3.1. Match the adjectives below to the word which means the opposite: tall weak young fat beautiful ugly mean small short thin
3.2. Match the adjectives in A below to the adjectives in B. Example: middle-aged is closest in meaning to old/ young A overweight elderly good-looking slim middle-aged chubby of medium height skinny muscular handsome attractive gorgeous well-built petite plain
short fat ugly beautiful tall young old big strong generous small mean thin
Which of the words above have a negative, critical meaning? 3.3. Which of the words in list A can be used to describe the people below? a. a man: ______________________________________________________ b. a woman: ______________________________________________________ c. a person over 50: ______________________________________________________
d. a person over 70: ______________________________________________________ e. a bodybuilder: ______________________________________________________ f. a supermodel: ______________________________________________________ g. you: ______________________________________________________
3.4. Match the parts of the face with the list of adjectives that can be used to describe them: Ears big full blue Nose snub sexy big Eyes Pointed big cauliflower Lips thin bright sticky-out
B. Describing characteristics
1. Which words have similar meanings and which words have opposite meanings? shy thoughtless honest bad-tempered friendly out-going fun selfish childish mean affectionate good-tempered thoughtful easygoing mature sociable patient generous nice caring kind
Similar Meanings kind + caring
___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________
Opposite Meanings selfish / thoughtful + thoughtless
___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________
2. Which of the words above would you use to describe the people below? Sometimes there is more than one possible answer. 1. She gives a lot of money to charity, and she likes to share everything she has with other people. 2. He’s great to go out with to parties and discos. He makes me laugh. 3. He never gets angry. He’s always calm and relaxed. 4. She never thinks about how other people may feel. 5. He’s very loving. He likes to show that he cares about me. 6. Sometimes he does stupid things. He should grow up! 7. He doesn’t like spending his money. 8. She is only interested in herself. 3. Make these words negative. Example: kind - unkind caring patient friendly mature
4. Match the expressions to the adjectives they describe. She’s full of energy. He likes to be the centre of attention. She thinks of others. He’s tight-fisted. She would never tell a lie. 5. Match the jobs to the descriptions. sales rep policeman nurse computer programmer thoughtful honest mean lively out-going
1. You have to be patient and caring, good-tempered most of the time, and kind and friendly. It’s hard work. Sometimes ill people are very impatient. 2. You need to be patient and honest with people, and you shouldn’t be unfriendly. But you also have to be very hard on people who are breaking the law. 3. You have to be very out-going and friendly. You have to be good at talking, too. You should also be honest, especially when describing your product. 4. You have to be patient and good at your job. But, it doesn’t really matter if you are shy, selfish or thoughtless – just don’t break the machine!
1. Write a description of a member of your family. 2. Describe your idol. 3. Write a description of your future partner.
• Word length: 200 words • Your writing should include: your opinion of the person, physical
description, their character, habits, likes and dislikes
• Use relative clauses in your writing.
Use the checklist below to edit your first draft. 1. Are there any grammar mistakes in your writing? ________________________________________________________________ 2. Are there any spelling mistakes in your writing? ________________________________________________________________ 3. Did you use relatives clauses in your desciption? ________________________________________________________________ 4. Did you describe the person’s weak points? ________________________________________________________________ 5. Did you describe the person in details? ________________________________________________________________ 6. Do you think the person in your description mkes a good impression on the readers? ________________________________________________________________
UNIT 11: DESCRIBING A BOOK, PLAY OR FILM
Grammar in focus
Definitions & Usage
ORDER OF ADJECTIVES When several adjectives come before a noun, they usually have to be put in a particular order. For instance, we say a fat old lady, not an old fat lady; a small shiny black leather handbag, not a leather black shiny small handbag.
Unfortunately, the rules for adjective order are very complicated, and different grammars disagree about the details. Here are some of the most important rules suggested by Michael Swan (Practical English Usage):
1. Colour, origin, material and purpose Adjectives of colour, origin, material and purpose usually go in that order
Colour red h a an brown n
Origin Spanis Germa Italian
Purpose riding beer
Noun boots mug vase
2. Other adjectives Other adjectives usually go before words of colour, origin, material and purpose. It is impossible to give exact rules, but adjectives of size, length and height often come first. The round glass table (Not: the glass round table) a big, modern brick house (Not: a modern, big brick house) a tall, ancient oak-tree a long, fat snake
3. Opinions, judgements and attitudes Adjectives which express personal opinions, judgements or attitudes usually come before all others. Examples are lovely, definite, absolute, perfect, wonderful, silly, etc. a lovely, long, cool drink
a wonderful sunny day 4. Numbers Numbers usually go before adjectives. six large eggs the second big shock First, next and last most often go before one, two, three, etc. the first three days (more common than the three first days) my last two jobs
5. Commas Before nouns, we generally use commas between adjectives (especially in longer sequences) which give similar kinds of information, for example in physical descriptions.
a lovely, long, cool, refreshing drink an expensive, ill-planned, wasteful projects But commas can be dropped before short common adjectives. a tall(,) dark(,) handsome cowboy
A tip to remember all the above rules: OpSACOMP Opinion: wonderful, nice, terrible Size: long, short, tall, Age: new, old Colour: red, blue, dark green, light brown Origin: American, Japanese, British, Vietnamese Material: stone, plastic, leather, steel, silk Purpose (what for?): a bath tower
Exercise 1: Write these words in the correct order 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. grey/long/beard/a: a long, grey beard flowers/red/small: car/black/big/a: a/thin/line/long: blonde/hair/long:
7. short/hair/wavy: 8. fat/short/a/woman:
Exercise 2: Look at each advertisement and write the information in a single sentence. e.g.: This game is new. It's for family. And it's exciting. This is an exciting new family game.
1) This computer is for business. It's Japanese. And it's powerful. ...................................................................................................................... 2) This is a chocolate bar. It's new. And it's a big bar. ...................................................................................................................... 3) This comedy is American. It's for television. And it's terrific. ...................................................................................................................... 4) These doors are aluminum. They're for your garage. And they're stylish. ......................................................................................................................
5) These shoes are modern. They're for sports. And they're wonderful. ...................................................................................................................... 6) This phone is a mobile. It's German. And it's very good. ......................................................................................................................
Describing a book, play or film
Lead-in 1. What is your favourite book, play or film? 2. What kind is the book, play or film? 3. What is it about? Model: This week, Susan is previewing forthcoming radio/TV programmes for the entertainments section of her paper. Tonight, the BBC continues its season of "All time greats" - a series which includes some of the most popular films of the past thirty years. Tonight's film is Psycho, a classic horror film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, and a masterpiece of its kind. The film is set in America; and it tells the story of a young man who runs a lonely, isolated motel with his elderly mother. They live in a large, old house next to the motel, but although we often hear their conversations, we never see the mother in person. A young woman stops at the motel one night, and in one of the most terrifying scenes of the film, is horribly and violently murdered. Her disappearance is soon noticed by friends, and they decide to find out what has happened to her. What follows is a spine-chilling tale of
mystery and horror. Perhaps the most frightening part of the whole film comes in the last few minutes, when the identity of the murderer is revealed. In spite of the fact that the film is now more than twenty years old, it is just as powerful as ever. Not only is it marvelously well acted, but it is superbly directed too, keeping the audience in suspense up to the very last moment. If you missed the film before, I strongly recommend that you see it tonight. A warning though - those of nervous disposition might do well to have an early night instead! QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS 1. What information is given in each of the paragraphs? 2. What is the function of the first and the final paragraph? 3. Which tenses are used in the second paragraph to explain the plot of the film? Give examples. 4. What are the author's feelings of the film?
A. Ask your partner about a book, play or film he/she has enjoyed recently. Find out: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Who is the author/writer/director of the works? What type of film/play/book is it? Where is the story set? What is the film/play/book about? Who are the main characters in the film/play/book? What is the most important part (climax) of the film/play/book? What did he/she feel about the works/the acting/the performance? Is it worth seeing/reading? Would he/she really recommend it to others?
B. Some examples of useful language are shown in the following box: The film/story is set in... It is a love story/a thriller/science-fiction... It tells the story of... It is about... What follows is a... tale of... I greatly enjoyed... I was rather disappointed with... It was well acted/directed/written. It was rather long/confusing/unbelievable. It is a classic/masterpiece of its kind. I can/can't really recommend it. It is well worth seeing/reading it. C. Contrasting facts should be used to attract readers: e.g.: I was terrified but I enjoyed the film. Although I was terrified, I enjoyed the film. In spite of the fact that I was terrified, I enjoyed the film. Join the following sentences in each of the way shown above: a. b. c. d. e. He loved her. He couldn't tell her. He was badly injured. He managed to reach the frontier. They were suspicious. They couldn't solve the mystery. They were very poor. They were extremely happy. I enjoyed the book very much. I didn't really like the film.
D. Inversions should also be used: e.g.:
He wins the race. He wins a fortune, too. Not only does he win the race, but he wins a fortune, too.
Join the following sentences in each of the way shown above: a. b. c. d. I have read the book. I have also seen the film. The gangster shot a policeman. He also shot a passer-by. She was late. She also forgot her notes. She was still in danger. She was also getting very weak.
E. Vocabulary Practice: Complete the sentences with an appropriate word from the list: acting acts audience filmed chapters plot ending readers extremely scene
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
The first three______ of the book were very exciting. The play consists of five ______. The film was ______ directed. The ______ clapped and cheered as the curtain came down. Have you ever seen the film? What is the ______? She won a prize for her marvelous ______. His death was the most moving ______ of the film. ______ of science-fiction will love this new novel. Although I enjoyed the novel, I thought the ______ was rather disappointing. 10. The scene was ______ in Greece.
1. Write a report on a film or play you have seen recently in about 200 words.
Use the plan below as a guide and think about the tenses you will need to use in each paragraph before you begin. Paragraph one: General introduction: When did you see the film/play? Where? Who with? Why did you choose that particular film/play? What type of film/play is it?
Paragraph two: Where is the film/play set? What is it about? Who are the main characters and what happens to them? Paragraph three: Conclusion: What was your opinion of the film/play? Why? Was it well acted/directed? Would you recommend it to others?
Note: Use correct order of adjectives in your writing.
2. Write a report on a book you have read recently. Collect the reports together and use them as a guide to the class library or as advice on further reading.
Use the checklist below to edit your first draft. 1. Are there any grammar and spelling mistakes in your writing? _____________________________________________________________ 2. Did you use correct order of adjectives in your description? _____________________________________________________________ 3. Is the writing descriptive enough? (Regarding the writing techniques) _____________________________________________________________
4. Would you recommend that other people should see or watch the film/book/play? _____________________________________________________________
UNIT 12: DESCRIPTIVE NARRATIVE
Definition Grammar in focus & Usage inversion
What is inversion?
Inversion is the reversal of the normal order of the subject and the verb in a sentence. e.g.: Tom’s father Verb is an engineer.
à Is Verb
Tom’s father Subject
When do we use inversion? Inversion is used to put emphasis on a certain part of a statement or to make a question. In this unit, we only focus on the use of inversion after negative or semi-negative words or phrases, after prepositional phrases or adverbs of time and place, in conditional sentences, and after Only
Inversion after negative or semi-negative words and phrases: never (before/ again) rarely seldom barely / scarcely hardly (ever) no sooner ... than not until not often nowhere at no time on no account under no circumstances in no way nor / not little, etc.
Seldom do we have goods returned to us because they are faulty. Hardly had I got onto the motorway when I saw two police cars following me. Never again did Max buy another motorcycle. Not a single word had she written since the exam had started. Little do they know how lucky they are to live in such a wonderful house.
Note: The inversion happens only in the first part of the sentence. For example: Wrong: No sooner had he opened the letter than did the phone ring. Right: No sooner had he opened the letter than the phone rang. Wrong: Not only did we lose our money, but were we also badly treated. Right: Not only did we lose our money, but we were also badly treated. • Inversion after a prepositional phrase or adverb of place or time:
At the foot of the hill lies a small village. Here comes the bus. Twice within my lifetime have world wars taken place. Often have I heard about his unreliability. Note: If the subject is a personal pronoun, there is no inversion. E.g.:
There he is! (Not: There is he!) Here she arrives! (Not: Here arrives she!) Inversion in conditional sentences where If is omitted : If I had gone to the post office, I would have bought some stamps. => Had I gone to the post office, I would have bought some stamps. If it had not been for your help, I wouldn’t have succeeded. => Had it not been for your help, I wouldn’t have succeeded. If you should meet her, please ask her to call me at once. => Should you meet her, please ask her to call me at once. Inversion after Only:
only + a time expression, as in only after, only later, only once, only then, only when. She bought a newspaper and some sweets at the shop on the corner. Only later did she realise that she had been given the wrong change.
only + other prepositional phrases beginning only by..., only in.... only with.... etc. Only by chance had Jameson discovered where the birds were nesting.
Exercise 1: Rewrite the following sentences, using inversion with these words:
not not until
only by on no account
e.g.: The door could not be opened without using force. à Only by (using) force could the door be opened 1 This was the first time the race had been won by a European athlete. ...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... 2 The plane had only just taken off when smoke started to appear in the cabin. ...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... 3 She made no sound as she crept upstairs. ...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... 4 This window must not be unlocked without prior permission. ...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... 5 He only thought about having a holiday abroad after he retired. ...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... 6 She didn't realize what would happen to her next.
...................................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... Exercise 2: Rewrite the following sentences using inversion. Begin your sentences with the words or phrases given. 1 The telephone started ringing just after he had left the office. No sooner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . 2 It is unusual for the island to be visited by tourists. Seldom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . 3 Judith started asking me questions as soon as I had stepped through the door. Hardly. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . 4 Passengers are not permitted to open the doors themselves in any circumstances. Under no . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . 5 He never broke the rules he set for himself. At no time. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . 6 You can only pass the exams with strong determination. Only by. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . 7 If an emergency should arise, call 113. Should . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . 8 The only representative of the Indian’s handicraft remains on the island.
On . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .
You may never have to write descriptions which are complete in themselves, but you may need to include descriptions in other pieces of writing, for example, in a personal letter, in a story, in a report, etc. If you tell a story and give some descriptions in it, you are writing a descriptive narrative composition. There are different kinds of descriptive narrative compositions: writing a biography, describing changes in places or in a person’s life, reporting events, incidents, or experiences, etc. In this unit, we will learn how to write one kind of descriptive narrative writing, i.e. reporting experiences, in which you will tell a story with a part describing a human scene. QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS You can see that a composition like 'A Day at the Seaside' is not pure description, but contains a narrative structure. Read the composition below, and answer these questions:
1. Which are the narrative parts of the composition? 2. Which parts are descriptive? 3. How is the writing organised into paragraphs?
4. What verb tenses did the writer use in the writing? 5. What kinds of linking words are used in the writing? Find examples. A Day at the Seaside Last Sunday was a beautiful day, and my brother, my sister and I were up early, impatient to go to the beach. However, as usual, my parents had watched the late-night film on TV, and in any case my father hates getting up on Sundays. I think every family in the city must be the same because by the time my mother had packed the lunch and my father had had breakfast, it was 10.30. When we got to the outskirts of the city, the road to the beach (which was ten miles away) was full of cars. It took us two hours to get there. When we arrived, we could hardly see the sand or find a place to spread our towels. There were thousands of people there, lying on the sand under brightly coloured umbrellas, or standing on the edge of the water, or bathing in the sea. Boys and girls were trying to play games, but there was no space because of all the people lying down. There were ice-cream sellers and drink-sellers wandering in and out between the bodies, and I could not hear the sound of the sea because of the shouts and screams and the noise of hundreds of radios playing different kinds of music. The only way to escape was to run into the sea and swim out for twenty or thirty meters beyond all the little children and their parents in the shallow water. At last, I could lie on my back in the water, feel the sun on my face, and be away from the noise. At about three o'clock, everyone had lunch, and my mother wouldn't let us go back into the water again till six. I wanted to stay there all evening, but my father insisted on going home at seven because he wanted to see the football match on TV. Every other father obviously had the same idea. When we started our journey home, there were already hundreds of cars on the road. Again, it took us two hours to drive the ten miles home, and my father missed most of the football match. When I am grown-up, I will have my own car and I will always go to the beach on weekdays.
As the writing is narrative, and often it is about a single event, past tenses are naturally used. Linking words are also used in this kind of writing, particularly the following sorts: time links, causal links, contrast links.
As part of the writing is descriptive, you usually try to give your readers an xact and detailed impression of something in your experience. Therefore, the larger and more precise your vocabulary, the better your writing will be. Moreover, you should use lots of adjectives and adverbs in your description to make it lively and interesting. Also, make sure you use them in the correct order.
Choose one of the following topics:
1. Write about a day you spent either (a) at the seaside (b) in the country or (c)
in the mountains, either in summer or winter in about 300 words. 2. Write about a day trip you made to a famous place in about 300 words. 3. Write about a picnic with friends in the country in about 300 words.
Checklist: Use the checklist below to edit your first draft. 1. Are there any spelling and grammar mistakes in your description? If yes, how many? ________________________________________________________ 2. Did you write sentences with inverted structures in this writing? If yes, which ones? If no, can you rewrite some sentences using inversion?
____________________________________________________________ _ _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ 3. Did you use correct tenses? _____________________________________________________________
4. Did you use any linking words? Did you use them correctly?
_____________________________________________________________ 5. Did you use many adjectives, adverbs to describe the scenes? Are they in the right order? Do you want to add any of them now? _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ 6. Is the writing concise? Is there any unnecessary/ irrelevant information included in the story? ____________________________________________________________ 7. Are you pleased with this writing? Why? Or Why not? _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________
Unit 13: STORYTELLING (PART 1)
Grammar in focus
Nominalization is the action of changing a sentence into a complex noun phrase and making it the subject of a new sentence. E.g. His father died. This was probably one of the reasons why he failed his exams. à The death of his father was probably one of the reasons why he failed his exams. The effect of doing this is that the meaning is “denser”, i.e. the same meaning is expressed within a fewer words. Also, the meaning of the clause in the first sentence can be expressed with one abstract noun. These two characteristics of greater lexical density and greater use of abstract terms are distinguished in an academic style.
Practice Connect each of these pairs of sentences into one sentence by nominalising the first sentence.
1. Telephones are often unreliable. This complicates matters. (frequent unreliability)
2. Parents are not concerned about their children. This results in their children feeling rejected. (lack) 3. The students did badly in the exam. This may have been because he was ill. (performance) 4. Children are taught music. This is very important. (teaching) 5. Many rural people are illiterate. This makes finding a job in a town very difficult. (illiteracy) 6. People burn oil and coal to produce energy and heat. This causes excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. (burning) 7. The government intends to build more schools. This has been announced in the press. (intention) 8. He is afraid of the sights of blood. This puts him off studying medicine. (fear) 9. Many tourists cannot speak Mandarin. This is a problem for them in Taiwan. (inability) 10. He smokes every night. This irritates his wife. (Smoking)
Storytelling with picture prompts…
Work in pair. Look at the following set of pictures and guess what happens.
Now read the story and answer the questions below:
One day a little girl wanted to go for a walk with her doll, so she made a sandwich and took an apple and some fruit juices. She put them in her bag and put on her pink hat. Then she put her doll in the stroller and went outside. Soon, a big wind came and blew her hat into a tree. A nice little sparrow saw the wind blow the hat into the tree, and he wanted to help the little girl. So, he took the hat in his beak and gave it back to the girl. The small girl was very happy. She gave the bird some pieces from her sandwich. Now the sparrow was happy, too.
Questions for analysis
1. What is the story’s title? 2. How many characters are there in the story? Who are they? 3. Where did the story happen? 4. What problem occurred? 5. How was it solved? 6. Can you name the compulsory components in a story?
Every story consists of these components: - Title - Character (s) - Setting - A problem - Events and/ or actions - Solution/ Ending Generally, you should follow these seven steps if you are to write a successful and interesting story.
1. Planning Think about your story. What is it about? Who is in it? What happens? Jot down a few ideas for your story quickly, but don't write the story just yet. This part of writing is called planning. 2. Characters People are the most important part of any story. The people in stories are called the characters. Who is in your story? What do they look like? What are they doing? What do they say? If you yourself are a character in the story, let readers know it, too. Try to create NAMES for your characters. 3. Location/ Setting Where are we? The place where the story happens is called the setting. Are we in the street or in a forest? Is it night and dark, or is it day and sunny? If you tell readers about the places and things, they can see them as clearly as you do. 4. Plot (Problems, actions and events) What happens? The things that happen in a story are called the plot. How does your story begin? What happens next? How does it end? Take care to think this out; otherwise things could happen in the wrong order. You have to be at a place before you can go away from it. 5. Now write the story When you know about the characters, the scene and the plot, you are ready to write your story. Tell about one thing at a time. When you have finished a part of the story, leaves a space and start a new line. This makes it easier to read the story. 6. Ask someone to read your story Ask your friends and family to read your story. They will tell you if you have missed anything out and help you with your story.
7. Check it over The last thing to do is called editing. Change any parts of the story that are not quite right. Check your spelling. Then write out your finished story in your best writing.
Your story must contain ALL prompts that the pictures provide you - characters, setting, events, etc. (if any). Use a variety of sentence types, nominalization and rhetorical methods to make yours a logical, cool and original one. Don’t just describe things or events. Let your character speak!
One way an author can get the reader’s attention is by using phrases that we call “red flags.” Red flags, such as all of a sudden or the next thing I knew, indicate a new twist in the plot. Red flags can replace predictable words and phrases, like next or and then.
Read the sample sentences below. Then create your own “Red Flag Menu” by filling in the blanks with as many red flags as you can think of. The menu has been started for you.
MY RED FLAG MENU
__________Suddenly_________ I managed to escape from the monster. __________Just then__________ I managed to escape from the monster. __________A moment later____ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________ I managed to escape from the monster. ____________________________I managed to escape from the monster.
In 40 minutes, use the pictures below to write a story. Your story should include:
• • •
a title: Pirate’s treasure characters’ name. a problem, actions and events. an ending about 150 – 200 words
Note: pay attention to nominalization in your writing.
1. Are there any spelling mistakes in your story? _____________________________________________________________ 2. Did you use nominalization in your story? _____________________________________________________________ 3. Did you create names to all characters? Were the names able to reflect their characteristics? _____________________________________________________________ 4. Did you include all prompts from the pictures in your story? _____________________________________________________________
5. Did you mention the place where the story happened? _____________________________________________________________ 6. Did you write an ending? Was it happy or sad? _____________________________________________________________ 7. Did you use appropriate language and style in your story? Is it either too formal or too informal? _____________________________________________________________
Unit 14: STORY-TELLING (PART II)
Grammar in focus
Components & Types
Different kinds of conjunctions are used to connect different words and groups of words.
CONNECTING THE SAME KINDS OF WORDS If you want to connect two or more words or word groups of the same kind, you use a coordinating conjunction.
Coordinating conjunctions and without nor or for so yet
The dog was large yet friendly. (The conjunction yet connects two adjectives large, friendly.)
Billy came to stay without a towel and without pyjamas. (The conjunction and joins two phrases, without a towel, without pyjamas.) And joins similar ideas. But and or join contrasting ideas. The dog looked friendly but he was in fact very savage. (Note the contrasting ideas friendly, savage.) He had to perform the task satisfactorily or he would be dismissed. (Note the contrasting ideas satisfactory, dismissed.)
WATCH OUT FOR … As a general rule, coordinating conjunctions should not be used to begin sentences. But sometimes this rule can be ignored.
CONJUNCTIONS IN PAIRS Some conjunctions pair up with other words to make the links between ideas. They form correlative conjunctions. Common correlative conjunctions both … and not only … but also not … but either … or Both exercise and diet are important for good health. Neither Lucy nor Thomas admitted to breaking the cricket bat. neither … nor whether … or as … as
CONNECTING GROUPS OF WORDS THAT DEPEND ON EACH OTHER Subordinating conjunctions force part of a sentence to depend on another part of the sentence. Common subordinating conjunctions after than before whenever once as if till if wherever so that because when now that as though even though whereas since as though until The rabbit moved quickly because it feared being shot. Because joins the less important part it feared being shot to the main part the rabbit moved quickly. The animals were exhausted when they returned from the walk. Before you watch TV, you must finish your homework. You can read more about subordinating conjunctions in the section on clauses. in order that although that even if where rather than as long as unless if only while
CONNECTING SENTENCES TOGETHER We can use another kind of structural word to join sentences together. These words are often called sentence connectors. Common sentence connectors also otherwise meanwhile however certainly therefore now furthermore anyway still namely indeed finally thus likewise hence besides then nevertheless instead
The rabbit moved quickly; however, it was shot by the hunter. However connects the two sentences The rabbit moved quickly and It was shot by the hunter. We hoped for good health; instead, it rained all day. The two parts of the new sentence are divided by a semicolon. The sentence connector is nearly always followed by a comma. You can read more about this in the section on punctuation.
Activity 1: Make as many sentences as possible using different conjunctions you have learned so far.
Sentence 1: Neither Tom nor Mary likes talking about politics. (Example) Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence ….. Sentence 10: ……………………………………………………………………… … 9: ……………………………………………………………………… 8: ……………………………………………………………………… 7: ……………………………………………………………………… 6: ……………………………………………………………………… 5: ……………………………………………………………………… 4: ……………………………………………………………………… 3: ……………………………………………………………………… 2: ………………………………………………………………………
Activity 2: Rewriting the following sentences in one sentence using conjunctions. In some cases there are several ways to do so. 1. Mai is interested in English. Thom is also interested in English. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------2. He loves you. He does not love you. I don’t care. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------3. You do not finish your homework. I will not let you watch TV. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------4. At that time it will be 6 o’clock. I will be at home. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------5. He did not attend the class. He did not do the home assignment. He failed the exam. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------6. He did not attend the class. He did not do the home assignment. He passed the exam. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------7. She bought a lot of items. They are books, shoes, hats, clothes, and some cookies. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------8. He walked silently downstairs. He did not want to wake his wife and the baby up. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
9. Her legs were broken. She managed to get to the hospital. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------10. I will lend you the car. You have to drive it carefully. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Questions for Analysis 1. In what genre of writing was the story written? (narrative, commentary, etc.) 2. What is the story about? 3. What tenses are used in the story? 4. Are there any special grammatical points in the story? 5. What did the author mention in the story?
It was nearly midnight when the doorbell rang. I opened the door and saw a girl with a motorbike helmet. She was covered in blood. ‘Oh, no,’ I said. ‘What has happened?’ ‘Please help me,’ the girl said weakly. ‘There’s been an boyfriend is outside.’ accident. My
I helped her to a chair. She was bleeding a lot. ‘I’ll call an ambulance,’ I said. I ran to the sitting room and phoned for an ambulance. Then I ran back to the girl. But she had disappeared. I went outside, but there was no sign of her or the motorbike in the silent street. When the ambulance arrived, I explained what had happened. The driver went pale. He said that exactly ten years ago, his daughter and her boyfriend had been killed instantly. His daughter had
Hi, my name’s Casper. Nice to meet you!
gone to ask for help in the house I was living in, but she died a few minutes later. The ambulance left. As I stood in the hall, I noticed there was no longer any blood on the chair where the girl had been sitting.
Decide what kind of story you want to write. Is it a thriller, a romantic story, or a funny story?
Have you got a plot or storyline? You can create your own story or get the ideas from other books that you have read and other people. The question is ‘Have you got any interesting ideas?’
Decide the time and the setting where the story will take place.
What will happen in the story?
Is the ending happy, sad, unsolved, open, or unexpected?
(For more information, please consult the unit 13)
In about 200 words, choose one of the following topics to write a story. a. Your unforgettable moment of your life. b. Your first love. c. A nightmare. Note: Pay attention to conjunctions.
Use the checklist below to edit your first draft.
1. Did you use conjunctions correctly? If not, are there any parts in which
conjunctions should be fixed?______________________________________
2. Did you use the right genre for writing a story?
3. What kind of story did you write?
Did you have a good storyline? ______________________________________________________________
Did your story have an opening, happening and ending? ______________________________________________________________
6. Did you like the story? Why (not)?
UNIT 15: GIVING OPINIONS
Parallelism in writing & Notes on creating strong parallelism.
Grammar in focus
What do we mean by “parallelism in writing”? If you've ever been told that your writing is sometimes awkward, one problem might be faulty parallelism. Usually when you're writing about a series of things within one sentence, each item in the series should be in the same form as the other items. If the items are in the same form, you have parallelism in your writing. If they are not in the same form, you have faulty parallelism.
When we talk about items being in the same form, we're talking about grammatical form, such as nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositional phrases, and clauses. Here is an example of faulty parallelism in which it is easy to see that the writer is switching grammatical forms: (a) In order to be classified as great, a baseball player must hit with power, fielding well is necessary, to be a fast runner, and throwing with strength and precision. In contrast, sentence (b) is a good example of parallelism: (b) In order to be classified as great, a baseball player must hit with power, field well, run fast and throw with strength and precision.
1. When two or more words are linked by a conjunction (and, but, or, nor),
they should have the same grammatical form. • Faulty parallelism: She enjoys watching basketball and to play football. gerund Parallelism: She enjoys watching basketball and football. noun Parallelism: She enjoys watching basketball and playing football. noun infinitive
gerund • Faulty parallelism:
He is working and goes to college. V-ing V-s
Parallelism: He works and goes to college. V-s • V-s
Faulty parallelism: Beth types slowly but she is accurate. adv clause
Parallelism: Beth types slowly but accurately. adv • Faulty parallelism: Oranges are cheap, nutritious, and taste good. adj Parallelism: Oranges are cheap, nutritious, and tasty. adj adj adj adj verb phrase adv
2. When you list a series of things or actions, you should use parallel structures. • Faulty parallelism: The book contained stories, poetic, and plays noun adj noun
Parallelism: The book contained stories, poetry, and plays noun noun noun
Faulty parallelism: He unlocked the door, took off his jacket, and sits down. simple past simple past simple present
Parallelism: He unlocked the door, took off his jacket, and sat down. simple past simple past simple past
Exercise 1 Some of the following sentences contain faulty parallel structures and some do not. Circle the numbers of the sentences that contain faulty parallel structures and create parallelism in them. 1. Eggs are very versatile: they can be boiled, fried, and poached. 2. More than 300 actors, dancers, and playwrights attended the opening ceremony. 3. On Sunday, Davis washes his car, plays tennis, and will watch television. 4. The holiday resort was beautiful but there were too many people.
5. For most people, travelling is expensive and tiring.
6. Her work includes reading, writing, and she answers the phone. 7. Let’s go to the museum first and then have some lunch. 8. When we saw them, he was wearing shorts and she wore an evening dress.
9. When they went to France, Louise travelled by train and John bicycled through the
10. I asked her for the test booklet, the tape, and for the teacher to give me a pencil.
Exercise 2 Rewrite the following sentences to correct faulty parallelism: 1. It is important that your writing is legible, and that you should write with correct grammar and punctuation. 2. After skiing all day, all I wanted was a good meal, a hot shower and to sleep. 3. Before handing in your essay, check your verbs for tense and agree. 4. Mother Teresa helped sick lepers, abandoned children, and people who were disabled. 5. With television, at any moment, we can watch performers singing, dancing, or act on the screen. 6. A travel agent uses a computer to check flight availability and gives prices. 7. The first thing I do when I return to my hometown is to stop by the coffee shop to have coffee and chatting. 8. Today’s students are more worried and seriously about their studies than students in the past. 9. Satellites in space beam radio, television, and by telephone signals worldwide. 10. Medical technology has led to great advances in the diagnosis and curing of many illnesses.
Lead-in 1. How do you feel about people who smoke? 2. Do you think the price of cigarettes should be raised to stop people smoking? 3. Should smoking be banned in public places? What exactly are these places? Now find out what other members of the class feel about these questions. QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS Now read the argumentative essay below. Look at the first sentence of each paragraph. Notice how the first sentence summarises the content of each paragraph. Which paragraph in the model does the following:
1. gives the writer’s opinion, and reasons for it?
2. strongly restates the problem and the writer’s opinion? 3. sets out the problem in general and states why it is controversial? 4. gives the other side of the argument and the reasons why this is false?
Statistics show beyond doubt that cigarette smoking can damage the health, yet a surprisingly large number of people continue to smoke in spite of all warnings. By doing so they are not just shortening their own lives, they are also affecting the health of those who are around them. It is time that non–smokers fought back! Personally, I think smoking should definitely be banned in public places. In the first place, it is very unpleasant to sit in a smoke-filled room, such as a restaurant or a cinema, if you do not yourself smoke. Added to this, smoking can be a serious fire risk, especially in a crowded place like discos. Finally, in my opinion, nobody should be asked to risk his health just because of another person’s bad habits. Smokers may protest that they should be free to do as they like. They say that we already have no smoking areas in public places, and that this should be enough. To my mind, however, non-smokers should also be free - free to go anywhere they
choose without risking their heath. Smoking is harmful not just to smokers but to non-smokers too. If some people are foolish enough to continue this dangerous habit, it seems to me that they should at least be prevented from doing so in public.
A. Giving opinions STATING AN OPINION In my opinion, / As I see it, / To my mind, / Personally, I think that (smoking should be banned in public places because it could be harmful to non-smokers.)
AGREEING Yes, I quite agree. I think. . .
Really? I'm afraid I don't agree. To my mind, …
B. Listing points Personally, I think smoking should definitely be banned in public places. In the
first place / To begin with, it is very unpleasant to sit in a smoke-filled room, such as a restaurant or a cinema, if you do not yourself smoke. Added to this / Furthermore / Moreover, smoking can be a serious fire risk, especially in a crowded place like discos. Finally / Lastly, in my opinion, nobody should be asked to risk his health just because of another person’s bad habits.
Choose one of the following activities for your writing. Activity 1 Study the language shown above. We often use this when speaking and writing about our opinions. Choose one of the following topics and discuss it in groups. Remember to note down good reasons for your opinions. 1. Should the police carry guns? 2. Should car seat-belts be compulsory? 3. Should married women with children be discouraged from going out to work?
4. Should governments stop spending money on weapons and do more to
help developing countries? Activity 2 The language shown below can also be used when writing about our opinions.
In my opinion, / As I see it, / Personally, I think that... because... I quite agree that... I don't agree that...
Write one sentence on the topic you have just discussed, stating your opinion and the reason for it.
Activity 3 In 20 minutes, write a paragraph of about 150 words giving your opinions on the topic you have just discussed in the previous parts.
Use the checklist below to edit your first draft.
1. Are there any spelling and grammar mistakes in your writing? If yes, how many?
2. Did you write sentences with parallel structures in this writing? If yes, which
ones? If no, can you rewrite some sentences using parallel structures? ______________________________________________________________ 3. How many sentences with faulty parallelism are there in the writing? If yes, how can you correct them? _____________________________________________________________ 4. Did you use language of giving opinions? _____________________________________________________________
5. Did you use any listing points? Did you use them correctly?
6. Are you pleased with this writing? Why? Or Why not?
Unit 16: FOR AND AGAINST
Grammar in focus
A conditional sentence describes the condition that is necessary for a particular result to occur. The conjunctions if and even if often appear in conditional sentences. The meaning of a conditional sentence determines which verb tenses needs to be used in the independent and subordinate clauses. There are three common types of conditional sentences:
1. Conditional sentence type 1
If + simple present If it rains If you don't hurry
Simple future you will get wet we will miss the train. Function
In these sentences, the time is the present or future and the situation is real. They refer to a possible condition and its probable result. They are based on facts, and they are used to make statements about the real world, and about particular situations. We often use such sentences to give warnings: • If you don't leave, I'll call the police.
If you don't drop the gun, I'll shoot!
Examples: • If you drop that glass, it will break.
Nobody will notice if you make a mistake.
NOTE: We can use modals to express the degree of certainty of the result: • If you drop that glass, it might break.
I may finish that letter if I have time.
2. Conditional sentence type 2
Form If + simple past If it rained If you went to bed earlier Present conditional you would get wet you wouldn't be so tired. Function In these sentences, the time is now or any time, and the situation is unreal. They are not based on fact, and they refer to an unlikely or hypothetical condition and its probable result. The use of the past tense after 'if' indicates unreality.
- If the weather wasn't so bad, we would go to the park (...but it is bad, so we can't go) - If I was the Queen of England, I would give everyone £100. (...but I'm not, so I won't)
E.g. a. If I was a plant, I would love the rain. b. If you really loved me, you would buy me a diamond ring. c. If I knew where she lived, I would go and see her. NOTE: It is correct and very common, to say "If I were" instead of "If I was".
3. Conditional sentence type 3
If + past perfect If it had rained If you had worked harder
Perfect conditional you would have got wet you would have passed the exam. Function
In these sentences, the time is past, and the situation is contrary to reality. The facts they are based on are the opposite of what is expressed. Type 3 conditional sentences, are truly hypothetical or unreal, because it is now too late for the condition or its result to exist. There is always an unspoken "but..." phrase:
If I had worked harder I would have passed the exam. (but I didn't work hard, and I didn't pass the exam). If I'd known you were coming I'd have baked a cake. (but I didn't know, and I haven't baked a cake).
NOTE: - Both would and had can be contracted to 'd, which can be confusing. However, would is never used in the IF-clause. - In this type of conditional sentence, the conditional can be expressed without using if by reversing the order of the subject and the verb in the subordinate clause.
E.g. a. If I'd known you were in hospital, I would have visited you. b. I would have bought you a present if I'd known it was your birthday. c. If they'd had a better goalkeeper they wouldn't have lost the game. MIXED CONDITIONAL SENTENCES It is possible for the two parts of a conditional sentence to refer to different times, and the resulting sentence is a "mixed conditional" sentence. There are two types of mixed conditional sentence: a. Present result of past condition: Form If + past perfect If we had looked at the map Function In these sentences, the time is past in the 'if' clause, and present in the main clause. They refer to an unreal past condition and its probable result in the present. They express a situation which is contrary to reality both in the past and in the present: 'If I had worked harder at school' is contrary to past fact - I didn't work hard at school, and 'I would have a better job now' is contrary to present fact - I haven't got a good job. E.g.
• • •
Present conditional we wouldn't be lost.
If I had worked harder at school I would have a better job now.
I would be a millionaire now if I had taken that job. If you'd caught that plane you'd be dead now. If you hadn't spent all your money on CDs, you wouldn't be broke.
B. Past result of present or continuing condition. Form
If + simple past If I wasn't afraid of spiders If we didn't trust him
Perfect conditional I would have picked it up. we would have sacked him months ago. Function
In these sentences the time in the If-clause is now or always, and the time in the main clause is before now. They refer to an unreal present situation and its probable (but unreal) past result:
'If I wasn't afraid of spiders' is contrary to present reality - I am afraid of spiders, and 'I would have picked it up' is contrary to past reality - I didn't pick it up.
'If we didn't trust him' is contrary to present reality - we do trust him, and 'we would have sacked him' is contrary to past reality - we haven't sacked him.
E.g. a. If she wasn't afraid of flying she wouldn't have travelled by boat. b. If I was a good cook, I'd have invited them to lunch. d. If the elephant wasn't in love with the mouse, she'd have trodden on him by now. THE 'ZERO' CONDITIONAL Form If + simple present If you heat ice If it rains Simple present it melts. you get wet
NOTE: The order of the clauses is not fixed - the 'if' clause can be first or second:
Ice melts if you heat it. You get wet if it rains.
Function In these sentences, the time is now or always and the situation is real and possible. They are used to make statements about the real world, and often refer to general truths, such as scientific facts. E.g. a. If you freeze water, it becomes a solid. b. Plants die if they don't get enough water. c. If my husband has a cold, I usually catch it. d. If public transport is efficient, people stop using their cars. e. If you mix red and blue, you get purple. This structure is often used to give instructions, using the imperative in the main clause:
If Bill phones, tell him to meet me at the cinema. Ask Pete if you're not sure what to do.
Practice Complete each sentence below by giving the correct form of the verb in parentheses. 1. If the city ________ (expand) the parking lot space downtown, we would not have to park so far away from the movie theatre. 2. Whenever my roommate ________ (snore) loudly, I cannot sleep. 3. Children may be disappointed if they ________ (not receive) good grades. 4. If we ________ (not take) an exam on the conditional, we might not have learned it. 5. Maya ________ (not pass) her driving test unless she calms down.
6. If it ________ (be) winter, all these trees would be covered in snow. 7. Had it not rained, the farmers ________(lose) all of their crops. 8. If the airplane had not had a mechanical problem, we probably ________ (arrive) in Winnipeg by now. 9. We ________(lie) on the beach in Mexico right now if we had been able to get our visas on time. 10. I ________ (try) to find more opportunities to write in English if I were you.
For and against
1. Where did you grow up – in a village, a town, in a city? Do you live in the same place now? 2. Where would you prefer to live – in the city or the country? Why? 3. With a partner, think of as many points as you can for and against living in the city. Model: Read the text below and see how many of the points you thought of are mentioned. Then answer the following questions.
Living in the city
I spend my childhood dreaming of the time when I could leave home and escape to the city. We lived on a farm and, in the winter especially, we were quite cut off from the outside world. As soon as I left school, I
packed my bags and moved to the capital. However, I soon discovered that city life has its problems, too. One of the biggest drawbacks is money – it costs so much to go out, not to mention basics like food and rent. Another disadvantage is pollution. I suffer from asthma, and at times the smog is so bad I am afraid to go outside. Then there is the problem of travelling round. Although I have a car, I rarely use it because of the jams. One alternative is to go by bicycle, but that can be quite dangerous. Of course, there are advantages. In the first place, there is so much to do in the city, whatever your tastes in culture or entertainment. In addition, there are wonderful job opportunities, and chances of promotion are greater, too. Finally, if you like shopping, the range of goods is amazing – and, what is more, shops are often only a short walk away. Is life better then, in the city? Perhaps it is, when you are in your teens or twenties. However, as you get older, and especially if you have small children, the peace of the countryside may seem preferable. I certainly hope to move back there soon. QUESTIONS FOR ANALYSIS 1. Scan the text again. Where do you think it comes from – a letter, a report, a magazine, a newspaper? Why?
2. What is the writer trying to do – inform, entertain, complain, persuade, give
facts? Is the format and language of the text appropriate for this? Why(not)? 3. Does the writer give an equal balance of points for and against the topic? 4. There are four paragraphs in the text. What is the topic of each of the paragraphs?
1. Linking your sentences In a paragraph, we use words or phrases like these to list fresh points in an argument. In the first place,… To begin with,… In addition,… What is more,… Furthermore,… Then, there is,… 1.1. Underline examples in the text “Living in the city – a high living or a nightmare?” and notice how the linking words and phrases are used. 1.2. Look at the paragraph below. Some sentences list fresh points in the argument some develop the point just made. Underline those that list fresh points. 1.3. Now write the paragraph again, using the words above, where appropriate, to link the ideas together. Finally,… Last but not least,…
Reasons for not owning a television “There are various reasons why I have never wanted a television. A television is
antisocial. Some families I know never speak to each other because they are too engrossed in one program or another. It is a terrible time waster. You can do so much more if you are not imprisoned in an armchair in front of that little screen. If you do not limit the amount of television your children watch, it can ruin their education. How many kids do their homework well if the TV is always on?”
We use the words below to contrast points in an argument. Although While In spite of the fact that Life in countryside peaceful. the is However,… Nevertheless,… On hand,… the other It can also be lonely. life in the countryside is very peaceful, it can also be lonely.
In spite of this,… Now complete these sentences: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Keeping animals in zoos can be cruel. In spite of this,… If you have a car you can get around easily. On the other hand,… Although learning a foreign language is hard work,… Sunbathing can be bad for you. It is, nevertheless,… While camping holidays can be great fun,…
3. Planning When writing about the advantages and disadvantages of a topic, it is extremely important to make a clear plan before you begin. Note down points for or against the subject as you think of them; then put the points in order. Try to think of a range of points on each of the argument. The following table can be used for this step: For …………………........................................... ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… Against ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… ………………………………………………… …………………………………………………
1. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using the Internet. 2. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of studying abroad.
3. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of keeping animals in zoos.
Note: 3. Word length: 300 words
Use the checklist below to edit your first draft. 1. Are there any grammar mistakes in your writing? ________________________________________________________________ 2. Are there any spelling mistakes in your writing? ________________________________________________________________ 3. Did you plan your writing before putting your pen down onto the paper? ________________________________________________________________ 4. Did you separate paragraphs that elaborate different points? ________________________________________________________________
5. Did you use linking words and phrases properly and effectively?
________________________________________________________________ 6. Did you balance the points for and against “keeping animals in zoos”? ________________________________________________________________
Brown, K. & Hood, S. (1989). Writing matters. Cambridge:Cambridge University Press (CUP). Cory, H. (1999). Advanced writing with English in Use. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Folse, K. S. et.al (2002). Greats Sentences for Great Paragraphs. America: Houghton Mifflin Company.
Fowler, W.S. (1989). Progressive Writing Skills. Edinburgh: Thomas Nelson and Sons Ltd. Haines, S. & Stewart, B. (1994). First Certificate Masterclass. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Hogue, A. (1996). First steps in Academic Writing. Longman: Pearson Education. Hutchinson, T. (2000). LifeLines Intermediate. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Ingram B. & King C. (1996). From writing to Composing. An introductory composition course for students of English. Cambridge University Press. Jolly, D. (1984) Writing Tasks, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Kelly, C. & Gargagliano, A. (2001). Writing from Within. Cambridge:Cambridge University Press. McArthur, T. (1984). The written words. Oxford: Oxford University Press. PET Preliminary English Test Handbook - Specification and sample papers for updated examination from March 2004. University of Cambridge, ESOL Examinations, UCLES 2003, pp. 12 – 14. Rimkeeratikul, S. (1997). English for Work. Bangkok: Thammasat University Press. Stephens, M. (1986). Practice Writing. Longman. Withrow, J. (1987). Effective writing. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Appendix 1: Error
Symbol Modifiers: Adj Adv poss Prepositions Explanation Use adjective Use adverb Use possessive form
Symbol Explanation General Items: // New paragraph ? ∧ ⁄ Meaning unclear Add omitted word/s Omit word/s; not
Right word but wrong form Expression (affected
by L1) Punctuation: C/CAP Capitalize P Nouns: pro agr art ger/ G N num/ # pro/PR REF Incorrect punctuation Pronoun agreement mistake Article mistake Use gerund Use noun Number; singular ↔ plural) Use pronoun Pronoun reference unclear
Syntax: ( ) F/ Frag ( ) R/ R-O S/V WO coh
Fragment error Run- on sentence Subject/ verb needed Wrong order Coherence (one idea does not lead to the next)
ss Connectors Conj/ Conn L R/PR
Sentence structure Incorrect conjunction / connective Link/combine Add relative pronoun
Verbs: VC SV agr vt/ VT vf/VF mod aux inf cond Voice change Subject/ verb agreement Wrong verb tense Incorrect verb form Modal problem Auxiliary verb Use infinitive Incorrect use/ formation of a conditional sentence. sp
Lexical items Incorrect spelling Word choice/wrong word wch/ ww
Style Informl PAR T/S PARA/UN Too informal Faulty parallelism Improve topic sentence Lack of paragraph unity
TRANS Transition needed ( Accroding to Klassen 1991, Bates et al. 1993, Ingram and King 1996) Appendix 2: Forms
of Formal Invitation
You are cordially invited To attend the
The Readers Association Board of Directors Meeting Request the pleasure of your On company Monday, March 23, 2005 At a tea In the Vibhavadee Ballroom In honor of Of Professor John Powers The Central Plaza Hotel On Saturday, May the fifth At At four o’clock
R.S.V.P. is the abbreviation of the French phrase “Respondez, s’il vous plait”, which means “Please answer”.
Sample of Letter of Acceptance to a wedding
53 Murray Avenue Birmingham B14 8KH
May 22nd, 2005 Dear Mr. and Mrs. Stafford, Thank you very much for your kind invitation to your daughter Margaret’s wedding. Sandra and I are delighted to accept. It was very thoughtful of you to enquire in your accompanying note whether we were coming down on the previous evening and to offer to find us somewhere to stay in the village. As we have a small baby, we do not want to be away for too long, so we plan to drive down in the morning. Frank told us that the reception is likely to go on for some time, but for the same reason, we will only stay to drink the health of the bride and groom. Then we will have to make an early start for home. Thanks anyway for thinking of us.
Appendix 4: Sample of Letter of Refusal to a wedding invitation 27 Hillside Close, Bournemouth, Dorset BA12 3BO May 24th , 2005 Dear Maggie, It was very kind of your parents to invite John and me to your wedding. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to come and I have written to them, expressing our regret, but I feel that I have to write to you personally to say how sorry we are that we can’t make it. The trouble is that the last two weeks in June are the only ones when John and I can both get away from work together. So we booked our holiday to the Greek Islands as soon as we realized this, and there’s no way we can change it. It’s such a pity because I was looking forward very much to seeing you married. Naturally, we’ll be thinking of you on the day. Have a marvelous time. We wish you all the best for the future, we’re sure that you’ll be happy. Frank is such a wonderful man! John sends his love. Our kindest regards to Frank.
Culture points of etiquette
Accepting the invitation Accepting an invitation is easy. The person who is invited just show appreciation to the person who has invited them and ask for the details of place and time. In many informal cases, the invited person can bring something along such as a plate of cookies or some fruit even though the host might have said that it was not necessary. Refusing the invitation When an invitation is refused, a reason should be given. In general, the sequence is to begin with an apology, then the reason for refusal, and finally thanks for the invitation.