Organization of a writing: a very important matter

If you think that writing is just to “write” your ideas and thoughts… you are doing it wrong! English Connection gives you some easy steps that will make your compositions look just perfect! 

good writing

Most students tend to believe that a good writing is the one which covers the different points proposed by the topic they are given. They are usually aware of the importance of the content. However, how many of them give the same importance to the organization and cohesion of the text? You have to notice that a proper organization of the ideas makes the reader understand the text better and easily.

Here you have some tips for you to improve your writing skills in terms of organization:

  • Before you begin, write your draft: Divide the text into different ideas to cover all the points required. Those ideas will be the different paragraphs of your writing. This is what is called paragraphing. The paragraphs must be clearly separatednot only to help the reader understand the content better and to help the writer check easily that he or she has covered the points he has been asked to, but in order to improve the presentation as well. At first sight, a writing divided into different paragraphs will certainly appeal more to the reader than a piece of paper full of words… because this is what your teacher sees every time he or she has to face single-paragraph texts!
  • Edit your text: Try to follow a logical order when developing your arguments, reasons, experiences, events…etc. Do not mix ideas and if you have already fully developed one point, it is OK if you refer to previous ideas with statements such as “As I said before…” or “ As it has previously explained…” but DO NOT DEVELOP THE SAME POINT ONCE AGAIN and try to avoid repetition!
  • Make your text coherent: In order to link ideas between consecutive paragraphs and within the same paragraph, it is important to count with a good range of connectors and linkers. Punctuation and conjunctions are important, but if you just use full stops, commas, “and” and “but” to separate and link ideas, your writing will probably have the look of a telegram or of a 5-year-old child’s text! Here you have some examples of the most important linkers and connectors classified according to their functions:

Tablas copy

Follow these tips and your writing won’t be a mess… and you will get a better mark for sure!

By Beatriz Aparicio and Pilar Pino (Leganés 2)

Publicado en Alumnos, Artículos de interés, Mejorando tus habilidades | Etiquetado , , , ,

Primeros pasos para un buen writing: Formato y registro

Here there are some useful tips and things to take into account when you are about to start a writing. From English Connection we hope you can use them in order to improve your English little by little.

writings

Writing in English is a difficult task for everyone, what students usually do is start writing straight away. But instead of doing that why don’t you spend a few minutes planning your writing?

There are some things you should take into account before writing. Two things you need to think about are register and format. They will be assessed as communicative achievement. 

The communicative achievement in writing depends on the use of the register style and the specific format it should have.

  • Register in writing tells us what the text is about, the way it is produced, and the consideration of the participants involved in the discourse. Depending on who the reader is intended to be, the writer would alter how he/she conveys the message. In this way, the text’s content and subject affects the participant. Therefore, we will use a different style depending on whether it is a letter of complaint, a letter of condolence, or a business letter. The author needs to decide whether the goal of the writing is to inform, persuade, or entertain, and who the target reader will be.
  • Academic research papers have to be written in a specific format. The accuracy in following a particular essay writing format is an indicator of a good and well versed writer. There are different types and formats of term papers suitable for various topics and subjects. Following the proper format and adhering to the rules will help a student earn a higher grade on your term paper. Format deals with the structure of writing and the way it is presented. Depending on the different types of writing it could include headings, bullet points, greetings…

In summary, the assessment of Communicative Achievement will focus on how appropriate the writing is for the task and whether the candidate has used the appropriate style

Publicado en Alumnos, Artículos de interés, Mejorando tus habilidades | Etiquetado , , , , ,

Consejos para mejorar la comprensión de un texto

reading

Are you one of those people who sees reading as a tedious task rather than one of those simple pleasures of life? If this rings true to you, you may want to rethink your view of reading as it is one of the best ways to build your vocabulary  and consequently improve your English as a whole. English Connection tells you how to do it!

  • Choose reading material that interests you and that is appropriate to your level. You are much more likely to get more out of your reading sessions if you pick something you’re keen on.
  • Skim the text for its gist: simply read through it quickly to find its main idea. What is it talking about? Who is involved?
  • Read it again and this time, take your time and underline any words, phrases or expressions you aren’t familiar with. First try to figure out what they mean by using context clues, then later on check whether you’re right or wrong by looking them up in the dictionary.
  • It would be ideal to keep a vocabulary notebook where you could write down all the fresh, new words you’ve come across in your reading endeavors.
  •  You could also write your own version of what you’ve read by rephrasing. For instance, if you’ve read an article, rewrite it in paragraphs. If you’ve read a novel, summarize it in

leer molachapters. With this you’ll also be helping your writing skills out.        

Perhaps turning yourself into a bookworm with impressive comprehension skills isn’t the easiest thing in the world. It’s by  no means an impossible feat, either. With a bit of interest, a little patience and a dash of hard-work, you’ll be flipping through those pages like the wind.

by Kara Formoso

Publicado en Alumnos, Artículos de interés, Textos traducidos (inglés- español) por párrafos | Etiquetado , , , , ,

Cómo tener una conversación en inglés y no morir en el intento

silencio embarazoso

Además de las clases, la vida nos ofrece muchas oportunidades para practicar el inglés en nuestra vida cotidiana, sin necesidad de irte al extranjero. Una reunión, un bar, conferencia, una comida entre amigos. Aquí van unos cuantos consejos y ejemplos de cómo iniciar una conversación (y mantenerla) en inglés y no morir en el intento. Si utilizas estas fórmulas en las clases cuando hagamos pair work (trabajo en pareja), harás la conversación mucho más natural.

Comienza presentándote. Un simple hola acompañado de una sonrisa para romper el hielo es un buen comienzo. Di tu nombre y haz alguna pregunta. No tengas miedo, a todos nos encanta hablar. Seguramente la persona extranjera se sienta más tímida que tú, recuerda que tú estás en tu país, en tu hábitat.

– Muestra interés. No monopolices la conversación desde un principio. Si comienzas intentando hablar mucho o hacer frases muy elaboradas puede que te atasques y el flujo de la conversación se corte, lo que te hará sentir mal contigo mismo. Mejor que sean frases cortas al comienzo. Veamos un ejemplo:

-What do you do?

– I am a teacher

– Really? /How interesting! I am a nurse, I work near here. Do you like working with children/teenagers?

– Yes, I do, I love my job. I mean they are sometimes very tiring, but it´s a very rewarding job.

– I see / I understand/ I know, I … (da alguna información sobre ti en relación a esto).

Como ves debes intentar que la conversación sea dinámica. Lo ideal es hacer alguna pregunta, dar alguna información sobre ti a cambio, mostrar interés con las fórmulas de arriba y realizar otra pregunta. O bien puedes dar algunos detalles. Para ello el uso del I mean (literalmente: “quiero decir”) es perfecto. Se usa para explicar mejor algo que hayamos dicho antes.

Sin embargo, una de las situaciones más embarazosas en una conversación en inglés es cuando estás hablando, y de repente, no sabes qué decir. El silencio hace acto de presencia, ¡no!. Te quedas atascado, todo el mundo te mira…


No te preocupes, es normal, así que aquí tienes unas cuantas ideas para salir airoso de la situación:

1-    Expresa tus ideas de manera concisa y precisa. Si no te expresas claramente, la conversación no prosperará o se irá perdiendo.

2-Intenta conectar tu idea con lo que estaba hablando tu interlocutor, de ese modo tendrás tiempo para desarrollar tu siguiente pensamiento

3-Muestra interés a tu interlocutor, expresando sorpresa con interjecciones como “Oh”, “Wow” ; agreement  “I think so”, “I see what you mean” or maybe you want to express empathy:”oh what a pity”, “that’s too bad”.

4-Por último, aquí tienes algunas palabras que son muy útiles para rellenar esos silencios: FILLERS

Los fillers son palabras o sonidos que se usan en la conversación para indicar a los otros que ha hecho una pausa para pensar pero que no ha terminado todavía de hablar.

Los sonidos fillers más comunes son: uh /ʌ/, er /ɜ: / y um /ʌm / y las palabras son “you know”, “I mean”, “I’m telling you”.

Usando estos consejos te aseguramos que te librarás de esos silencios incómodos!

By Vanesa Honrado, centro de Getafe1 y María José Cordero Raffo

Publicado en Alumnos, Artículos de interés, Mejorando tus habilidades | Etiquetado , , , , ,