Speaking and Writing Giving your opinion with a clear structure in both speaking and writing Background Information



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Speaking and Writing

  • Giving your opinion with a clear structure in both speaking and writing

Background Information

  • Proficiency Level:
  • High Intermediate in EFL setting
  • Aim:
  • The aim of this lesson is to enhance students’ speaking and writing skills using content-based instruction.

State your opinion first

  • In speaking when we are asked to give our opinion about something—such as, “Do you believe the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are good or bad?”—we need to first clearly state our opinion.

Structure in Speaking

  • An opinion could be: “In my opinion, the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are great because they are humorous, beautiful and friendly.” ---We should also provide some supporting ideas for our opinion.
  • Supporting ideas explain why we have this opinion.

Providing Support

  • “I believe monkeys of Monkey
  • Mountain are an asset for Kaohsiung because monkeys are
  • humorous, beautiful and friendly
  • Monkeys are beautiful creatures and we are so lucky to be able to witness their natural wondrous beauty.
  • First state our opinion
  • Second,
  • provide
  • support

Structure in Speaking

  • Is studying overseas worthwhile?
  • State your opinion and provide some support (reasons) for your opinion
  • You have three minutes

Useful Phrases for Speaking

  • State your opinion immediately
  • In my opinion,……
  • Personally, I feel……
  • I strongly believe……
  • As far as I’m concerned……
  • Support—explain a point clearly
  • What I’m trying to say is…
  • In other words,……
  • The thing is……
  • Transitions: furthermore, moreover, in addition….

Is studying overseas worthwhile?

Writing our opinion

  • The opinion about monkeys we had is called our thesis sentence. A thesis sentence is where we state what we believe about a question. In this case it
  • is our opinion about monkeys.
  • As with logical speaking we need to provide support sentences for our thesis sentence.
  • Support sentences explain why we have this opinion.
  • They are sentences that provide reasons

Writing your opinion

  • Write paragraphs that support your thesis sentence. These paragraphs are called the “Body” of the essay
  • Write a conclusion
  • Thesis sentence
  • Supporting paragraph
  • Supporting paragraph
  • Supporting paragraph

The introduction

  • In the introduction we need to state our opinion clearly; that is, we need to state our thesis sentence. This sentence should be the last sentence of the introduction paragraph.
  • Before we write the thesis sentence we need to write at least one sentence to introduce the subject of our writing. In this case we need at least one sentence to introduce the given subject--“Do you believe the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are good or bad?”

The introduction

  • It is very common these days to hear people arguing as to whether the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are a nuisance or an asset. I personally believe the later to be true. I believe the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are an asset because those monkeys are humorous, beautiful and friendly
  • Sentences to introduce the subject
  • Thesis sentence

Body paragraphs

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means.
  • Monkeys are beautiful creatures and we are so lucky to be able to witness their natural wondrous beauty.
  • If we understand monkeys , we know that they are very friendly creatures who can show love, affection and friendship.
  • Just like in speaking one should provide reasons for our thesis sentence.
  • In this writing I have divided the three reasons provided into the main subject (or topic sentence) of three paragraphs.

Body paragraphs

  • Each topic sentence (or main idea) of a paragraph should be explained in greater detail with supporting sentences. In one body paragraph we should have at least four supporting sentences.
  • What are some possible supporting sentences for the first topic sentence:
  • “Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means.”

Supporting sentences

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means.

Supporting sentences

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means. For example: it is so funny watching monkeys constantly running and chasing one another.

Supporting sentences

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means. For example: it is so funny to watch monkeys constantly running and chasing one another. What is more, their expressions are so human like and comical that one cannot help laughing at their expressions.

Supporting sentences

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means. For example: it is so funny to watch monkeys constantly running and chasing one another. What is more, their expressions are so human like and comical that one cannot help laughing at their expressions. Furthermore, the strange sounds they make and the freedom in which they make them make us all for some reason smile.

Supporting sentences

  • Monkeys are the symbol of humor and freedom; besides, without monkeys how could we understand what fooling around really means. For example: it is so funny to watch monkeys constantly running and chasing one another. What is more, their expressions are so human like and comical that one cannot help laughing at their expressions. Furthermore, the strange sounds they make and the freedom in which they make them make us all for some reason smile. Similarly, the beauty in which these monkeys live somehow makes us smile.

The conclusion

  • For the first sentence of the conclusion we need restate our thesis sentence. In restating our thesis sentence we must write it in a different way, where possible using different words and sentence structure.

The Conclusion

  • Restate the thesis sentence
  • I believe the monkeys of Monkey Mountain are an asset because those monkeys are humorous, beautiful and friendly
  • To conclude, as I have shown, the humor, beauty and friendliness of the monkeys of Kaohsiung makes them a great asset for the city.

The Conclusion

  • We can also add another sentence that may emphasize an action that you would like the reader to take.
  • To conclude, as I have shown, the humor, beauty and friendliness of the monkeys of Kaohsiung makes them a great asset for the city.
  • For example
  • I suggest that we need to respect the monkeys of Monkey Mountain and continue to assure that they will be cared for.

The Conclusion

  • We can also make a sentence that makes a final comment about the essay’s main idea.
  • For example
  • To conclude, as I have shown, the humor, beauty and friendliness of the monkeys of Kaohsiung makes them a great asset for the city.
  • I suggest that we need to respect the monkeys of Monkey Mountain and continue to assure that they will be cared for.
  • It is quite sad that many people are unable to understand that monkeys do not wish any violence toward their human cousins; rather, through coming to know them, they can become our good friends

Writing: Is studying overseas worthwhile?

  • In your groups of four put the opinions and supporting sentences you made for the question “Is studying overseas worthwhile?” into an outline for an essay.

Outline “Is studying overseas worthwhile?”

  • Introduction)
  • -Sentence(s) to introduce subject
  • -Thesis sentence
  • Body paragraphs:
  • Paragraph One) Topic sentence
  • a) Supporting sentence
  • b) Supporting sentence…etc
  • Paragraph Two) Topic sentence
  • a) Supporting sentence…etc
  • Conclusion: -Restate thesis -Final comment
  • -Suggested action

Home Work

  • Then for homework, I would like you to use this outline to write a 250 to 350 word essay


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