Basic english writing questions and answers

Answer the following questions from your reading assignment. You must answer in complete sentences.

A. Answer the following questions from the reading assignment.

1. What is a paragraph?

A paragraph is a distinct unit of the text, which may consist of several or even one sentence. A paragraph performs the function of dividing the text into logically connected segments, which help the reader to see the organization of the piece of writing. Each paragraph supports some idea and can have one or more topical sentences.

2. Why is specific evidence important in an effective paragraph?

The aim of an author is not just to share his/her idea with the reader, but also to make this idea clear and understandable. Specific evidence should cover detailed and precise information for supporting an author’s claim. A variety of sources makes the evidence stronger, which, in turn, will persuade the reader and deserve his/her confidence.

3. To write an effective paragraph, what 3 things must a writer do?

A writer must assert the point he/she wants to present in the paragraph, then find the quotes and examples to illustrate it, and lastly, analyze all the above mentioned points in a way of explaining the significance of this paragraph.

4. What are the four goals of effective writing?

The transition will help the reader to transfer his/her attention from the previous idea to the next one. In effective writing, there must be a claim or a topic sentence to encourage further reading. The third thing is evidence, which is needed for upholding the writer’s views. The last goal is an analysis of the information, evidence, thesis, and ideas given in the paragraph.

5. What two things does an effective topic sentence do?

An effective topic sentence defines and states the concept of the paragraph as concisely and clearly as it possible. At the same time, it directs the reader to the following information.

B. Complete the activities. Yes, it’s a lot, but these kinds of exercises are essential to becoming an effective writer.

Also, complete the selected activities below.

6. Which sentence expresses the main idea? (choose the correct answer by highlighting it using the highlight function in Word):
a. Instead of talking on the phone, we send text messages.
b. People rarely talk to one another these days.
c. Rather than talking with family members, we sit silently in from of TV sets all evening.
d. In cars, we ignore our traveling companions to listen to the radio.

7. In each sentence below, substitute the general words in italics with specific words that you come up with.
a. The floor in the front of my car is covered with things.
(lots of stuff, all sorts of odds and ends, rubbish, bits and pieces, oddments)
b. It took her a long time to get home.
(a good deal of time, a lot of time, much time)
c. Nia’s purse is crammed with lots of stuff.
(things, bric-a-brac, knickknacks, trinkets, trifles)

8. Add two supporting details for each of the topic sentence: Our neighbor’s daughter is very spoiled.
a. Our neighbor’s daughter, Kate, is very spoiled.
b. Our neighbor’s daughter through her misconduct seems to be very spoiled.

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Answer the following questions from your reading assignment. You must answer in complete sentences where appropriate.

1. Why is clearly organized support necessary for effective writing?

Writing is effective if it is clear and understandable to the reader. The given information must be organized and supported by evidence, so the reader could effectively deduce the main idea from the paragraph or the whole text.

2. Describe the listing order. Why do writers usually save the most important/interesting item for last?

Listing order is used to enumerate some facts or events which are connected logically. First of all, a writer should present his/her point of view (topic sentence) in order to intrigue his/her readers and encourage for further reading. Listing order signals, supporting sentences and logical reasoning will make the content representative and definite. The conclusion is needed to demonstrate the results of the written material, where the most important conclusions can appear. This method by saving the most fascinating item for last is used, on the one hand, to make a stronger effect on the reader. On the other hand, the reader should be prepared for the informational innovation by means of grasping all existing information.

3. Describe time order. What are some of the transition words used in time order?

In paragraphs, ideas, evidence, examples are obeyed by temporal variations and chronological order. It means that a writer will need certain words and phrases to indicate this temporal phenomenon. Such words and phrases are called transitional and can specify not only time (when, now, afterward, as long as, meanwhile) but also sequence (and, also, next), comparison (in the same way, likewise), place (above, near, here), contrast (on the contrary, but, although) and so on.

4. Why should an effective writer use transitions?

All sorts of information, especially complicated one, will be better perceived with the help of transitions. They regulate this information and make the impression of organization and order, which facilitate the cognitive process.

5. Label each group of sentences as showing time order or listing order. Also, underline or highlight the transition words.

a. The karate class I took last week convinced me that martial arts my never be my strong points. For one thing, there is the issue of balance. Secondly, there was the issue of flexibility.
This group of sentences represents the listing order.
b. On December 7, 1941, Japan attacked the United States at Pearl Harbor. First, they got their aircraft carriers as close to Hawaii as possible. Next, they launched on attack on the American fleet near Honolulu.
This group of sentences represents the time order.

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Do you agree or disagree with this statement: “People who speak grammatically correct English are sometimes looked down upon by certain segments of society.” Write a paragraph that explains your point of view.

Ironically enough, speaking grammatically correct English can be a mistake. A native speaker encountering with the phenomenon of perfectly spoken language will feel uneasy. Such literary language indicates the intention of the spoken person to be understood by the interlocutor. However, the only effect that it causes is sounding rather odd and unnatural. In most cases, there can be tourists or immigrants, but in one word – foreigners. There are a number of reasons why this word arouses a lot of negative emotions. Perhaps, the most significant of these is that the English do not trust them. As a result, it is also sometimes suggested that a foreigner always be a foreigner, because this distrust gives rise to a great variety of stereotypes. Nevertheless, the situation is not so terrible and hopeless.

Everyone will face with the problem of stereotypes. It is believed that the first impression is difficult to change. It is true, but it is possible. The English will look somebody down because of the correct grammar – sounds rather generalized. Some will do, but some of them will not. If a foreigner is worthy, he/she is capable of doing his/her best. Grammatically correct English also can be different, for example, one will use ten tenses in dialogue and another will use five. So, it is important not to overdo.

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Another situation can occur, when a black man speaks proper English. It is not a problem connecting with the situation of foreigners anymore. Moreover, a foreigner will do everything not to be a black sheep. It is a higher level of difficulties, if a man consciously decides to speak in such a way. Indeed, people around one rarely respect the choice to speak without slang. With time, social surroundings will make this person feel uncomfortable and press him. In “Talkin’ White” by Wayne Lionel Aponte such a situation is described. A black boy was pressed to lose himself. On the one hand, it is strange for an average English man to speak proper English all the time. On the other hand, the language is deformed in something terrible, which cannot exist without vulgarisms, slang and swearing. So can grammatically correct English be a mistake? Yes, it can. But prejudice, narrow-mindedness, stereotypes, laziness and a rush for new fashion trends in the language is a bigger mistake.

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