~ Contents ~ Writing ~ Topic 1~06 ~ Community ~

TLW ~ English Writing Basics ~ Structures and Forms


Listening and


1) Community


2) resources


3) assistance

Vocabulary: Look up, translate, and talk about the words. Add your own words to the list.

4) online (social media)


5) local (business)


6) events (festivals)

7) meetings


8) petitions


9) organizations

10) leaders


11) volunteers


12) outsiders

~ How to Make a Lesson ~ Procedures ~


1)   To begin with, as a class, in groups, in pairs, or by yourself, look up, talk about, and practice the vocabulary

2)   Then, begin to make sentences relating to the topic (assisted by students, the teacher, or the internet)

3)   After that, organize your sentences into a paragraph (use the information below and/or consult others)

4)   Next, proofread your text to identify questions/errors ~ Remember, mistakes are a way for us to learn

5)   Finally, read your text to the class. Give and receive feedback from the teacher and other students

       (You may wish to rewrite your text or prefer to move on to the next topic. Enjoy the process)


Though some traditional grammars have treated articles (the, a(n) as a distinct part of speech, contemporary grammars more often include articles in the category of determiners.





names a person, place, or thing

pirate, Caribbean, ship, freedom, Captain Jack Sparrow


takes the place of a noun

I, you, he, she, it, ours, them, who, which, anybody, ourselves


identifies action or state of being

sing, dance, believe, seem, finish, eat, drink, be, become


modifies a noun

hot, lazy, funny, unique, bright, beautiful, healthy, wealthy, wise


modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb

softly, lazily, often, only, hopefully, softly, sometimes


shows a relationship between a noun (or pronoun) and other words in a sentence

up, over, against, by, for, into, close to, out of, apart from


joins words, phrases, and clauses

and, but, or, yet


expresses emotion and can usually stand alone

ah, whoops, ouch, Yabba dabba do!

To begin, every sentence has a subject and  predicate:


1) The subject tells who or what the sentence is about: The restaurantThe lobster, My friend from Spain.


2) The predicate tells what the subject is or does: The restaurant is popular, The lobster is fresh, My friend loves lobster.


Adapted from Study and Exam: Two Types of Clauses


1)       Main or Independent Clause   

          expresses a complete thought and can stand alone as a sentence

I met the boy   who had helped me.
She is wearing a shirt  which looks nice.
The teacher asked a question   but no one answered.
He takes medicine   because he suffers from fever.
He became angry   and smashed the vase into pieces.


2)       Subordinate or Dependent Clause

          does not express complete thought and depends on the Main Clause to express complete thought 

          A sentence having a subordinate clause must have a main clause


            I met the boy  
who had helped me.
            She is wearing a shirt 
which looks nice.
            The teacher asked a question   
but no one answered.
            He takes medicine  
because he suffers from fever.
            He became angry  
and smashed the vase into pieces.


Exercise: As a class, in groups, or in pairs, create and identify both types of clauses.


Types of sentences:


1) Simple: Contains a single, independent clause.


I don’t eat green eggs and ham.


2) Compound: Contains two independent clauses that are joined by a conjunction (but, or, and, so, because).


Many people came to the party, so we had to go to the liquor store.


3) Complex: Contains an independent clause plus one or more dependent clauses


(A dependent clause starts with a subordinating conjunction: that, because, while, although, where, if)


Paper is good for taking notes, although computers are the best tools.


Although computers are the best tools, paper is good for taking notes.


Note: When the subordinate clause follows the independent clause, no comma is needed

unless the clause expresses contrast or exception (although, while, whereas).



Adapted from Learn to Speak English: English Paragraph with Family Members - Four Types of Sentences


1) The Topic Sentence expresses the main idea and the meaning of a paragraph.

           It functions as the parents in a family of sentences.


2) Supporting Sentences provide additional information in strong support of the main idea.

           They function as older brothers or sisters that show respect for and obey the main ideas of their parents.


3) Detail Sentences are small bits of information or facts relating to a specific supporting sentence.

           This is similar to a younger brother or sister following an older one's example or trying to help in some way.


4) A Closing Sentence (or conclusion/summary statement) provides closure to the paragraph.

          Giving closure is like a person saying goodbye in a proper way: a visitor or a friendly aunt or uncle.


Exercise: As a class, in groups, or in pairs, create a paragraph using the four sentence types above.


Adapted from The Write Stuff: Four Types of Paragraphs


1) Narrative Writing ~  Tells a story ~ It usually follows a sequence of events and is written in the first person.

          It can be fiction or non-fiction. Example: a What I Did Last Summer writing assignment.


2) Descriptive Writing ~ Provides a vivid picture ~ The goal is to help the reader picture in their mind’s eye.

          It’s like painting a picture with words. Descriptive language is very detailed. Example: describing a photo.


3) Persuasive Writing ~ Expresses an opinion ~ It provides arguments as to why this opinion is correct and

           tries to convince the reader. It often mentions the opposing view but provides statistics, facts or proof

           that supports the opinion held. Example: Why Uniforms Are Good (or Why Uniforms Are Bad).


4) Expository Writing ~ Focuses on the facts ~ The goal is to provide explanations, information or definitions.

          There are no opinions, just clear, hard facts. Example: a Wikipedia entry.


Exercise: As a class, in groups, or in pairs, create a paragraph using one of the four paragraph types above.


Links for further study


1) Sentence Openers

2) Sentence Connectors

3) Subordinate Clauses and Conjunctions

4) Essential and Nonessential Clauses

5) Punctuating Compound and Complex Sentences

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