All posts by Sheffner

Part-time instructor of Academic Writing in English @ Kyoto Prefectural University, Kyoto, Japan.

AW1: week 5, May 25th, 2018

Homework

  • Read the “Outlines” handout (black and blue) and see how I re-wrote the thesis statements and conclusions.
  • Look at the comments I made about your draft #2.
  • Re-write your draft #2 (this becomes draft #3)
  • Email me your draft #3 (Word document or RTF files only please, no PDFs)
    • Document and email title: AW1 Essay1 Draft3 Your Name
  • Print out your draft #3 and bring it to class.
  • Find an essay written in any European language (see the links below for some suggestions),
    • read it (in Japanese translation is fine)
    • make notes of your impressions – things you notice about the style, the structure, the topic, etc.
    • bring your notes to next week’s class to discuss with classmates.

Links to lists of famous essayists

Today’s class

  1. Using your notes and any Internet resources, write a short paragraph about
    1. what the liberal arts are and why they are taught in Western colleges/universities
    2. what an essay is and why essay writing is taught in Western schools and universities
  2. 1-to-1 conferencing to discuss your essay #1, draft #2.

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AW1: week 4, May 11th, 2018

Update: Next class will be Friday May 25th.

Homework

  1. Rewrite your draft #1. This will be Essay1 Draft2
  2. (Email me your draft ONE if you did not give it to me in class Friday May 11th).
  3. Title the file and your email <AW1_Essay1_draft2_(Your Name)> (without the <>)
  4. Email it to me by next Friday.
  5. Research
    1. What are the liberal arts?
    2. What is an essay, and why is it used in the West for academic training?
  6. (Optional) Leave a comment on this blog about today’s class

Today’s class

  1. Read classmates’ outlines and re-write the thesis statement and conclusion if necessary.
  2. Read the sample essay’s thesis statement (p. 4) and conclusion  (p. 5)
  3. In small groups, read and comment on your classmates’ draft #1.
  4. Read p. 29 “Hooks”
  5. Read p. 30 “Conclusion”

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AW1: WEEK 3, APRIL 27TH, 2018

Announcement

Email problems have been fixed. Apologies for the inconvenience.

Update: New essay titles have  been added to the list. See below.

Homework (for May 11th)

  1. Email me your outline for your essay #1 (Explanatory essay)
    1. For my contact details, see the handout from week 1
  2. Write draft #1 of Essay #1 and bring it to the May 11th class.

Today’s class

Summary of what academic writing is.
  • Start with a research question
    • e,g, what are academic skills?
    • what is academic writing?
  • Define your terms,
    • e.g  original meaning of “academic”
    • history of academic writing – where does it come from
  • Collect evidence
    • Observations (what you saw/read with your own eyes)
    • objective facts (dates and names of people, places, etc)
    • make careful notes of what you find
  • Decide your answer (conclusion) to your research question
  • present / publish your answer (conclusion, findings, research results) including your facts which support your conclusion.
    • get feedback from audience (listeners & readers) so that you can
      • correct your language (grammar)
      • correct your thinking (logic)
      • improve your communication to make it more effective
  1. Sample corrected student essay  “I collect women” – grammar errors highlighted
  2. Sample student essay re-written
  3. Sample student essay “How I got to be interested in reading a book”
    1. What academic writing guidelines did she follow or not follow?
  4. Textbook p. 16 Practice 1
  5. Textbook p. 21 “The Thesis Statement”
  6. p. 19: choose a topic
  7. p. 26: write your outline
  8. Here are some of the titles of Explanatory essays written by Academic Writing I students in former years. Feel free to steal their ideas for your own essay. If you would like to read the original essay, please email me and I will send you a pdf.
    1. Year 3
      1. I collect Women
      2. How I got to be interested in reading a book
      3. My part-time jobs
      4. My part-time job
      5. Dogs
      6. The Reason Why I Like Public Baths
      7. Traveling with My Family
      8. One of my hobbies: Cooking
      9. -My Life With Crutch
      10. What I felt in Gunkanjima
      11. My part-time job at Matsumoto Kiyoshi
      12. The driving school
      13. My Respectable Family
      14. My favorite artist
      15. My memory of last summer vacation
      16. My accomplishment: Electronic organ lessons
      17. What is a tradition
      18. Twitter addiction
    2. Year 4
      1. My school excursion in Singapore
      2. Saikyo Zensen has changed me
      3. Recommendation to drink tea
      4. Why People in Japan Like twitter?
      5. Is Bicycle Just a Tool?
      6. My English Life
      7. About my favorite dance
      8. Why I am studying European and American culture and language
      9. The True Thing Studying Abroad Made Me Realize
      10. How to cool down in Japan
      11. Most important things in life
      12. The point that I changed
      13. The words of a blind man
      14. A person who influenced me
      15. An event that changed my life
      16. Gift my teacher gave me
      17. What fencing gives you
      18. Do you know the mandolin?
      19. I graduate from oneself weak
      20. Always a mother affects a daughter
      21. “Ohigan” is a Japanese custom
      22. Abhorrent Handball
      23. How I got interested in my hobby
      24. What Pinocchio says
      25. Beyond Mathematics
      26. A connection when I got interested in sewing
      27. About Benjamin Franklin
      28. A great teacher in my schooldays
      29. Lego Bricks
      30. Let’s Play Musical Instruments
      31. Brass band’s effect: an event that changed my life
      32. A person who influenced me: Shinsaku Takasugi
      33. A great pleasure with pain
      34. How I got interested in dancing
      35. The happiness of my family
      36. My grandmother’s diary
      37. Why I am studying Public Policy

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AW1: Week 2, April 20th, 2018

Homework

  1. Read the sample essay in the textbook pp. 15-16.
  2. Review the textbook sections we read today (see below).
  3. Option: Leave a comment about today’s class on this blog.  Comments and questions are always welcome. If you prefer, you may contact me privately by email (see the “About this course” handout from week 1).

Today’s class

  1. Background to academic writing. (Download the handout here: what is academic writing_short_v4  )
    1. origin of the word “academic”
    2. history of academic writing in the West
      1. the trivium
      2. the scientific revolution
    3. Textbook practice 1 (pp. 4-5)
    4. P. 6 C,  purpose of essays
    5. p. 7 Practice 2
    6. P. 2-3, I, A  Define an essay
    7. P. 3 B, Essay format
    8. P. 8, II, A, Audience
    9. p. 19 Your Turn – read the list of topics. You will start writing in class next week. For now, just think about these topics. Which one might you want to write about in class, next week?

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AW1: week 1, April 13th, 2018

Welcome to Sheffner’s Academic Writing I (AW1), Friday 4th period.

Homework

  • Leave a comment on this blog about today’s class.
    1. Your name is public, but your email is private. Any email address that you regularly use is ok. Do not write your email address in the comment!
  • Read the sample essay in the textbook, pp 4-5.

Today’s class

  1. Small-group discussion and individual written answers: What is “academic writing”?
  2. Mini-lecture on the history of academic writing (download a basic PDF worksheet: What is academic writing_short
    1. summarise your notes of the mini-lecture
  3. Introduce yourself in writing; explain how you came to be here, in this class, in KPU.
  4. Outline of the course (handout). You can download the outline of the course here: aw1, 2018 – course intro

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AW2: week 15, February 2nd, 2018

Todays’s class

Write an essay for 2 of the following topics. Choose topics you did not use in the January 19th class. You have 85 minutes. Double-space your writing and add a suitable title. You may not use dictionaries or electronic or internet devices.

  1. If you could change one important thing in your city or town, what would you change? Use reasons and specific examples.
  2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Consumers should have to pay for every song they download from the Internet.
  3. Discuss the similarities and differences in the student-teacher relationship for young children (grade school) and for young adults (high school through college).

I’m sorry I can’t be there today, guys, but am in hospital for an emergency eye operation.

it was fun teaching you, and I wish you all the best in your future. Enjoy this life.


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AW2: WEEK 12, January 12th, 2018

Homework

Read the textbook chapter 6, pp 133-136 (Section C) and p. 137 Section D.

Today’s class

  1. Make sure you know how to format your Bibliography or Works Cited.
  2. Make sure you clearly introduce the article you are responding to in your introduction.
  3. Clarification of the meaning of “negative correlation/relationship” in the Kohn article.
  4. Free writing: your winter vacation
  5. Sentence combining worksheet (download it here: SENTENCE COMBINING wksht
  6. Read again your free writing. Can you find sentences which could be or should be combined? Combine them.
  7. Every claim needs evidence. Read again your free writing and add evidence that you could provide to prove that you did what you said you did in your vacation.

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Happy New Year

Best wishes for a peaceful and prosperous year.

 

 

 

 

 

“There is never a stop to the sunrise. Sunrise happens all day long. Somewhere on this earth the sun is rising. Somewhere on this earth the sun is setting. That was just where YOU were. It never stops. It keeps happening all day long. And what is your night, somewhere is daylight.”


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