Thursday, June 18, 2009

Shibaura Institute of Technology Writing 1A: Students write about their special places

The students in the Writing 1A class at Shibaura Institute of Technology are doing great work this year. Over the next few weeks I'm going to post some of their work on this blog. We are using Writing from Within Intro by Curtis Kelly and Arlen Gargagliano. I really like this textbook, and I usually don't like textbooks.

In class we do the exercises and tasks in the textbook and then the students write a first draft. They send their first drafts to me by e-mail. I check them and error code them. The students then edit their first drafts using a bilingual English - Japanese Grammar Error Code Key that I have given to them. After that we review some points in class. Then the students exchange their first draft with a partner for peer feedback. Finally, they write a second draft and e-mail it to me for final assessment.
The examples below are edited versions of the students' second drafts. Most did not require much editing. Sometimes I have left in some vocabulary that might seem a bit unnatural when I'm not sure exactly how to interpret what the writer wants to say. I have tried to respect each student's voice. I have decided to edit them for two reasons. First, I hope that my students will compare the edited version with their second draft and notice the differences. I think this will help them to improve their writing. The second reason is that the students are sensitive about their mistakes. They don't want them dispalyed to the whole world. Even great writers have editors to help them. I don't see a problem with editing my students' writing before it is published. So then, here are some examples of my students' writing. Enjoy!

Yuko's Special Place

My special place is my elementary school, which is about 3 minutes on foot from my house. What happened there was when I was in 2nd year. I was playing with my friends after school. I don’t remember exactly what we were doing, but I think we were playing on the monkey bars. Then, I slipped from a bar, and fell. I slammed my left arm into the ground, and my bone broke. It hurt so bad, and I cried a lot. This is one of my most painful memories, though it’s also a nice memory, because when it happened, my friends helped me, and I knew the preciousness of friends.
Yuko I.

Yuri's Special Place

My high school is in the country. There are a lot of trees and fields near my school. I was going to school in the morning, and I saw my friend sitting in the street. I was worried about her, so I ran up to her. When I got to her I was very surprised. There was a tanuki with her. She was feeding a rice ball to the tanuki. I asked her, "What are you doing? Is that your lunch? She said to me, "Yes, but he looks so hungry. Look! He's eating it. He's so cute. I felt happy too. This is my funny memory from high school.
Yuri K.

Masako's Special Place

When I was a junior high school student, I went to an elementary school for a work experience as a teacher. I taught second year students, and read a picture book to them. I had a very good time. After my stay at the elementary school, all the students in the class gave me a lot of letters, and I became very happy then.
Masako I.
Tomohiro's Special Place

My special place is a park in front of my house. When I was a child, I practiced riding a bicycle without the training wheels with my father in the park. I disliked this because I fell down many times. I was discouraged many times, but my father encouraged me. At last, I could ride a bicycle alone. When I could ride a bicycle for the first time I felt very refreshed. I thanked my father. Now I like riding a bicycle because of this experience.
Tomohiro K.

That's all for now. I'll post some more soon. Please leave a comment. I know my students would appreciate hearing what you think of their writing.

1 comment:

  1. Really good writing. Better than some of my first year university students who I used to teach! The playground story took me back to my childhood. Keep it up.