Get writing right now04-Oct-2013
We’re all very excited because in October, we’ll be adding manually marked writing activities to our blended learning platform, the Macmillan English Campus! This will increase the kinds of interactions students can experience when using the English Campus, and will give teachers even more opportunities for enhancing their students’ skills.
Perhaps more than any other skill, writing gives teachers a really accurate insight into their students’ true ability, especially when it comes to grammar, syntax, spelling and awareness of native forms. This is probably why it’s many students’ most hated activity type! So how can you make your students enthusiastic about applying pen to paper?
One of the reasons that writing is quite unpopular with students is because it is the least communicative skill and tends to be seen (and implemented) as a solo activity, often set as homework to be done alone. Make it a collaborate experience to engage students more successfully. This lovely lesson by Jessica Watson on onestopenglish is all about collaborative story writing and takes you through an in-class writing activity that would be so much fun, especially when they’re all read out at the end!
The great thing about writing is that it can always, always, always be improved! At the start of term, ask students to write a piece based on a popular topic, and every few weeks, once they’ve learnt new general vocabulary and more complex grammatical structures, you can ask them to edit their original text, correct any mistakes and make new changes. This can again be done collaboratively, so that students share their knowledge and help each other. This would also be a great way of consolidating all the new things they’ve learnt, like a unit review! This idea is also recommended by Jackie McAvoy in her onestopenglish ‘Writing tips’ article.
If you’d like a more structured syllabus for really strengthening your students’ writing skills, check out our featured title, Skillful. Providing plenty of ideas, model texts, useful vocabulary and new grammatical structures, the Reading and Writing Student’s Books, available at four levels, will give you unlimited opportunities for getting your students writing.
And if you’ve got any proven ideas that have produced fantastic results from writing activities, please share them with our other readers in the comments section below!