February 24, 2020 2

Teaching with Easy English Writing Steps – FREE Textbook EFL ESL

Teaching with Easy English Writing Steps – FREE Textbook EFL ESL


– What’s that? – What’s what? – That, is it a bird? Is it a plane? – No, it’s Easy English Writing Steps! – Oh! (chuckles) – What are you on? Come on, pull yourself together, Ralph. We’ve got a video to do. – Ooh, Teaching with Easy
English Writing Steps? – Yeah, that’s why we’re
looking at it on the screen, and it’s just gone into second edition. – What does that mean, Justin? – It means we’ve cut out all the crap and put a load more good stuff in. – Ooh, can we say that? – Say what? – I mean, is it politically correct? – What, do you think
I might get impeached? – Impeached? That sounds quite nice; I like peaches. – Oh, please. In this video, we’re
going to tell you about the features of Easy
English Writing Steps. Then we’ll briefly go through the pages, and finally, I will show
you how I use the steps in the classroom. – Don’t forget the very
important point, Justin. – Yes, this book is absolutely free. You can download a copy right now at the link below this video. Okay, Ralph, let’s begin. – First off, it’s very student-friendly. – Yeah, it can be used to self (stumbles over words)
(laughs) a self-study reference book. – It has lots of examples, and they’re all in easy English. – Yeah, and there’s no technical jargon and the vocabulary is all
around pre-intermediate level. – Like the videos? – Yep, that’s right. – And there’s a checklist
for common mistakes? – With the videos to help
with more difficult points. – Do you think it really
works as a self-study book? – Yeah, I know it does, because some of my
students do the whole thing as a homework assignment. – How do you do that? – I give them a copy
of the grading rubric, show them the website and videos, and ask them to write a paragraph referring to steps two through six. – And how are the results? – Surprisingly good, Ralph. I was quite amazed the
first time I did it. – They must be really good students. – Yeah, good, but not great, and I did give them three weeks. Obviously it works much better with the help of a
teacher, so let’s move on. – Teacher Freedom! – Yeah, Easy English Writing
Steps is very, very flexible. – So you don’t need to worry
about the level of the class and the book being appropriate? – Well, my students are first year university students in Japan. They have been taught English
writing at high school, so their level could be anything from sentence level to short essay level. – That’s quite a wide range. – Yeah, but the steps work
with that range of students, even if they’re all in the same class. So I don’t need to wrestle
with CRTA before the course. – C-R-T-A? – Yeah, Choose the Right Textbook Agony. – (chuckles) I’ve never
heard that one before. – No, because I’ve just made it up. (chuckles) Next! – It’s attainable. – Yes, at 14 pages, it’s far less than intimidating for the students. They think, “Yes, I can do
this, I can learn this.” – And the goal is to master the steps. – Yes, to make it their own,
and they can do that because… – Of the grading rubric, that constantly refers the students to their weaker points. – And finally, some very fine videos to use in the classroom
or at home for review. Next! – Right, let’s have a look at the pages. Here we are, all 14 of
them, including the cover. Is this really enough for a year’s work? – Yeah, 30 90-minute
lessons, yeah, it’s enough. Don’t forget, Ralph, this is
a student-centered course. At the end of the year, there will be many more
pages in their file, pages that they have
created and worked on. – Using the writing steps, yeah, I get it. Wow. Would you call this a
revolutionary method, Justin? – Well, it’s got my head spinning, Ralph. (chuckles) Next! – Hand writing format; do people still use
handwriting these days? – Not so much, but it’s still important because they might have
to use it for some tests, such as IELTS or TOEIC. – So, each of the steps
has a brief introduction? – Yeah, it is a guide,
and it tells the student why they are doing that, but of course, a teacher could introduce it
in a much more dramatic way or funny way, to get
the students’ attention and focus them on the task. There are two important
points to remember here. Go on, Ralph, you do it. – Yeah, make sure that the students know that the double-space
is only for classwork so that the teacher can do the marking. In an exam, they should use single space unless told otherwise. – And the other point is the size of the students’ handwriting. Some students write very
small and very faintly. This is not good if they
do this in the test. They are likely to get a very low score. – Why?
– Because the examiners, believe it or not, are
only human; they get tired. If your writing is very difficult to read, they may just give you a low
score and go to the next one. (gasps) Shock horror! Next! – Step two, I think this is
quite self-explanatory, really. – Self-explanatory? It’s intergalactic! Next! – Step three, the writing checklist. This one’s really important. – You can say that again, Ralph. – This one’s really important. – Now this checklist is made for first year
university students in Japan. These are the most common
(frustrated shouting) and annoying mistakes
(frustrated shouting) they consistently make.
(frustrated shouting) When they stop doing it
through use of this checklist, their writing is noticeably better. – Nice recovery, Justin. – Don’t worry, Ralph. I’m just trying to emphasize the point. – (chuckles) And you did. – For example, look at checklist four. Now, we all know that it’s possible to start the sentence with
and, but, so, because. But in Japan, they do it all the time, and they do it badly, and that is why it’s in the checklist. – Hang on, Justin, I’ve
just had a brainwave. – Ooh icky! Would that be a microwave, or a tsunami? – A tsunami, I think. – Come on then, Ralph, let’s have it. – Well, every country will probably need a different checklist. – A little bit different, yeah. – So, what we could do is
put a Microsoft Word document of the checklist on the
teaching page for the steps at EnglishClip.com. – Yeah?
– And then, teachers could make changes to suit the students in their country. Then they could mail it back to us, and we could put it on the teaching page so that other teachers from
their country could use it! – Ralph, just when I’m
beginning to worry about you, you come up with an idea that
is absolute genius, yeah! – Yeah!
– High five, my friend! – Yeah!
– Ralph, watch out! – Ooh ooh!
(clattering) – Ralph, what you doing? I said “High five!”, not
destroy the blooming studio! – Sorry Justin, I missed your hand. – You walk the line, don’t you? – What line? – The very thin line
between idiot and genius. – Um, thanks? – Next! – PC format, step by step. – There are probably better ways to start a document than this, but it works and the video is very useful. – How do you use it? – I take my students into a PC room and get them to open up a new
document in Microsoft Word. Then I show the video on the screen. I pause the video after each step and tell them to do exactly the same. No more, no less, and I
go around the classroom constantly checking that
everybody is on track. – And their work should
look just like the example at the bottom of the page? – Yeah, and then they print it out. – So everyone leaves the computer room with a perfectly formatted
piece of writing. – Yeah, that’s right, so after this, I will be quite strict
when grading format. This video is going to
be very long, Ralph. – Don’t worry about it. This is seriously good information, and the viewers are
teachers, they want to know. – Okay, my genius friend,
I will trust your judgment. Next! – Step five, topic sentence. Self-explanatory? – Um, well, it’s pretty straight forward, but as with step two, I’d
like to explain this step in the next part of the video,
when we’re talking about how we progress through the course. – Okay, and step six? – Yeah, it’s pretty obvious
what we’re trying to do here, and I will mention it again later. – Okay, so step seven, the OREO worksheet? – Yeah, this is a pre-writing
task for step seven. So you can see there’s a paragraph at the bottom of the page and in groups they would work together and put all the sentences
in the right places. – So this is the same
paragraph as used in the video? – Yeah, so they can watch the video and check their answers. Then get them to make an
OREO table in their notebooks and make notes about their opinions. After that, they make yet another OREO table in their notebooks and write the sentences
about their opinions. – And rewrite in PC format for homework? – Yes indeed, Ralph. Next! – Step eight, contrast essay. – This is pretty straight-forward if you think your students are up to it. – Do you give them this topic? – The topic I give them is “All students must study
abroad for one year “in order to graduate”. So they all have different points of view and it makes it a bit more interesting. – And step nine? – Yeah, this is where
flexibility really comes in, if you think it would be
helpful for the students do step nine just after step seven, using their paragraphs to
make five-paragraphed essays just the same as we did
in the step nine video. Or, you can make it more challenging by getting them to write
about a different opinion. – So the steps don’t have
to be done in that order? – That’s right, Ralph. The steps represent the skills that the students need to master, not necessarily the order
that they are approached in. – And step 10? – As you can see, this
is a reference paper with some very useful words. They should be using these
from step seven onwards. Who-ee, thank god there’s only 10 steps. I don’t think I could go up any more. – You should have written a book called the Writing Elevator, that’d have made it much easier. But you’ve still got two more pages to do. – All right, bring it on, Ralph. Onwards and upwards! – Writing emails. – If your students will be
mailing you on the course, then you should do this very early. – You could get them to all write their emails on the board, and then practice writing
emails to each other, and replying. – Emphasize that they
must use the subject box and include their name in
English and their class number. Next! – And finally, the grading rubric. – It’s certainly a last but
not least situation here, because this humble paper
is the driving force behind Easy English Writing Steps. – Yeah, the grading rubric
really helps the students, because it’s always pointing
them back to their weak points. They know what to do if they
want to improve their grade and improve their writing. – They know exactly where they stand. – We’re on the last leg now, Justin. – Oh, that’s a coincidence, because I’m on my last legs. – How to use Easy English
Writing Steps in the classroom. – Okay, let’s rock and roll. – Lesson one. – There are tons of things that you need to do in the first class, but if it’s a writing class, the most important thing you can do is get a writing sample from the students and give them their
first graded assignment to download and print in color, Easy English Writing Steps. – We’ll tell you more about
that at the end of the video. Lesson two. – Get them to look at the
self-introduction example in step two. Give them some time to think about ways to improve their writing. They can swap their work
with their partners, and help each other. The teacher can walk around the class and look at the students’ work briefly and give them some hints. – This is a good time to
get to know the students, isn’t it, Justin? – Yeah, and it’s a good time for them to get to know each other. So it’s very important, on a social level. – Then introduce step
one and do the gap fill. – This looks very easy to the teacher, but for the students it’s
really quite a challenge, so I would be constantly
moving around the classroom and pointing out their
mistakes and making fun. – Finish it for homework and lesson three. – Introduce step three and quickly go through
the checklist points. Another good chance for me to be moving around the
classroom and helping them, and getting to know them a bit better. After that, take them to the PC room. Do as I described earlier. – Lesson four. – Introduce step five
and show them the video. I let my students use their cellphones. It’s good because they
can bookmark the page and they always know where to find it if they need to watch it again. In these early classes, it’s
good to find opportunities to mix the students up
so that they can meet all the members of the class. – We haven’t covered pre-writing
activities in this video but here’s an example. – Yeah, to do this fun quiz, I would count the students
into random groups. – Give the students a few minutes to come up with answer one. – One student from each group comes and writes the
answer on the blackboard. – The first questions are very easy so most of the students get full points and you can compliment
them on their smartness. – But the later questions
are much more tricky and that’s where the fun begins. The homework is write a paragraph
about a person you know. – Don’t you show them the video? – The step two video, no, not yet. – Why not?
– Well, it’s case by case. I might do, but the focus of
this lesson was topic sentence and they have already watched one video so two videos might be overload. Also, some of the smarter students may have noticed the video in step two and might have a look at it at home. This is very good. – Okay, lesson five. – The students check their work and check their partner’s work with the check list. – Then they watch the
video on their phones. – Yeah, show them the video and tell them that this is going to
be a graded assignment so they have to think of ways
to improve their writing. Teacher walks round class,
chats with students, and tries to help them by
giving them hints and tips. – When you ask them to
do rewriting in class, do they really do it? – Some do, some don’t, but
you have to bear in mind that coming to university
is a big step for them. They’ve left all their
high school friends behind and it’s really important for them to make good friends at
university, so I don’t mind. Another thing is that I give
them quite a lot of homework, so if they don’t do
the rewriting in class, they have to do it at home. That’s okay, and they
don’t seem to complain. – Moving on to lesson six. – Students check their own
work, check their partner’s work and introduce them to step six. Watch the video on their phones, then they check their work for short or poor sentences. – This will be a great time
to do another quiz, Justin. – That’s right, Ralph, and it’s even easier than last time. This time, all you have to do is write a really poor short
sentence on the blackboard and get the groups to
work on improvements. The teacher awards points from one to five for the best sentences
and Bob’s your uncle! – Homework, rewrite and submit your final draft next week for grading. – And hopefully their final drafts will look nothing like this. – Oof, Justin, that’s rough! (chuckles) – No, they’ll be much
better than this, trust me. I wrote this one, just to
show you how I mark them. It’s the best worst writing I can do. – It shows very clearly how
well the student has studied. – Yeah, and what the
student needs to study more. – So the student needs to study format, checklist, and step
six, to make improvements. – Yeah, it’s that simple,
and for the other things, I just gave an average grade. I don’t want to discourage the student by putting red ink all over the paper. Next! – (chuckles) I like this. This is great. – Yeah, it’s a beautiful thing, because when we’ve completed step six, we’ve set up a learning cycle. The teacher is completely
free to choose the direction that will be best for
the class as a whole. – And everything the student writes will be tested against the steps. – Yes, so they become
more and more familiar with the writing steps. – So in the end, they will have completely
learned the writing steps. – That is the goal. They will make those skills their own. – Okay, let’s just talk
about student level. How about level one? – Go slower, spend more time on the steps, don’t go beyond step six, introduce different topics, do lots of practice and
come out with students who are at strong paragraph level. That is a great achievement. – And level two? – Definitely do step seven. Do steps eight or nine in a
way that suits your students. It all depends how strong they are. – What about level three? – Of course, everything
will move at a faster pace but be careful not to leave any of the weaker students behind. Classes are rarely streamed by writing, so some of the students
might not be that good. Do steps eight and nine, do more topics, run everything past the
writing steps and the rubric. Is that it, Ralph? – No, there’s just one last thing. – Is that a Steve Jobs one last thing? – No, it’s a Ralph MacBook one last thing. – Go on then, get on with it. The cows are coming home. (cattle bellowing)
– If your students are reluctant to download the book just write this on the blackboard. Compare Easy English Writing
Steps with all the other books they have bought for university this year. Show them your example
and stress these points. – This really works and they will feel quite good about it in the end. – Can I ask you a question, Justin? – Sure, go ahead. – Why do you do this? – Fear, Ralph. – Why, what are you afraid of? – Not my fear, the fear
on the students’ faces when you walk into the first class and they’re sitting there
with a big fat textbook full of words that they don’t understand and already they are saying, “I can’t learn this, I can’t learn this.” It cost them an arm and a leg, and it will only help
about 50% of the class. The other 50% will be left behind. – No, I meant why do you make all these English learning materials and give them away for free? – Oh, it’s my philosophy, Ralph. I’ll explain it very briefly. There are many big bad
things in this world that I can’t change, because
I’m just a little person. But one thing that I can change is my little corner of this world. My motto is, “It’s got to be fun.” I meet a lot of students every week and if that can be a fun time, then things are good in my corner. – So, you want to share
this with other teachers? – Yeah, help them to make
their corner more fun, and thereby making the
world a better place. – Yeah, learning English
doesn’t have to be like going to the dentist. – You wouldn’t use that
expression if you saw my dentist. – What do you mean? – She’s beautiful. (Ralph chuckles) If you have any questions about using this book in the classroom, please feel free to ask
them in the comments. We will be glad to answer. Are you ready?
(upbeat music) One, two, three! – [Both] Please help
us to spread the word. – Subscribe and hit the bell button. – Press the like button. – Press the dislike button. – No, no, no, no. – I don’t care! – He said, “Please share!”

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