Tag Archives: week 3

Academic Writing II, week 3: October 17th, 2014


  • Is your topic controversial? Avoid non-controversial topics for your persuasive essay.
  • Read again your introductory paragraph.
  • Change topics if you want to.
  • Plan your persuasive essay. Write your first draft. Bring it to class next week.

Today’s class

      1. Read the sample persuasive essay, “School Uniforms Should Not Be Required” (click link to see the essay)
        1. What is the writer’s opinion about school uniforms?
        2. Where (in which paragraph and where in the paragraph) is the writer’s opinion stated?
        3. What is the purpose of paragraph 2?
        4. Does the essay persuade you? Why or why not?
      2. Read the sample persuasive essay on Teen Drivers.
        1. What is the writer’s opinion about teen drivers?
        2. Where (in which paragraph and where in the paragraph) is the writer’s opinion stated?
        3. What is the purpose of sentences A and B?
        4. Does the essay persuade you? Why or why not?


    1. Look at the sample essay in the textbook on pages 90-1
      1. What is the writer’s opinion about babies in Japan?
      2. Find the objections (=counterarguments) and match them with their answers (= arguments) (see page 93 Practice 1, 3)
    2. Students typically choose non-controversial, boring topics for the persuasive essay. Here are some sample controversial essay topics:
      1. Global warming is not happening.
      2. All drugs should be legalized.
      3. The government should withdraw funding for all education.
      4. The sale and possession of guns should not be restricted.
      5. Separating plastic bottles from other trash is a waste of time.
      6. Subsidies on rice should be abolished.
      7. Wearing a seatbelt in a car should be optional.
      8. Driving licences should not be required.

Academic Writing I, week 3: April 25th, 2014

Kamogawa River, Kyoto, looking north. April 25th, 2014


Write (type)  your explanatory essay, print it out & bring it to the next class, Friday May 9th.

In today’s class

  • Students read each other’s homework writing
  • textbook p2, 3 (format), p6 “purposes for essays”,  p7 practice 2,  p 9 practice 4, p11 practice 6, p12 practice 7,  p 19 example topics, p25 the outline, p 29 “The Hook”.
  • Michel de Montaigne  (1533-1592) is considered one if the fathers of the essay form. Read about him in Japanese on Wikipedia
  • Some students gave me their homework from last week (I asked for it after class had finished, and some students had already left the room). If you typed your “Place” and “Person” writings, then please email them to me. If you wrote them by hand,  give them to me next time (May 9th).


Here is a powerful TED talk by Eric Whitacre, creator of the virtual choir. On a computer you can watch it with English subtitles (I don’t know about on iPhones) on the TED website: https://www.ted.com/talks/eric_whitacre_a_virtual_choir_2_000_voices_strong or watch the YouTube video below (no subtitles):

Academic Writing II – week 3, October 18th, 2013

Choose a topic for your next essay (read textbook p94 Section D and the model essay on pp 91-2), and write the first draft. Bring it to class next week (October 25). We will read and comment on each others’ drafts. Handwritten is ok at this stage.

today’s class:

  1. we read and analyzed the short model essay (click here to download)
  2. textbook p90: answer questions 1-3 in writing
  3. read and analyze the model essay on pp 91-2
  4. read p 92 section C & p 93 Practice 1

Academic Writing I – week 3, April 19, 2013

[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlfKdbWwruY’]

Homework: (click here to read what we did in today’s class)

  1. Read these pages and sections in the textbook, and answer the questions in the textbook:
    1. p. 3 section B
    2. p. 4 practice 1
    3. p. 6 section C
    4. p. 8 section A
    5. p. 9 practice 4
  2. Read this short essay by French economist and thinker Frederic Bastiat called “How Paris is Fed” (bonus points if you can find an online Japanese translation) and write some your answers to these questions:
    1. Was it interesting? Why (or why not)?
    2. Did you feel you wanted to read more? Why (why not)?
    3. Did you enjoy reading it? Why? Which parts (sentences, words, images, etc) did you enjoy?
    4. What did you notice about the
      1. grammar (vocabulary, etc)
      2. logic (what order or organization does the writer use?)
      3. rhetoric (how does he convince or persuade the reader? How does he encourage the reader to read more)?

Today’s class: Continue reading Academic Writing I – week 3, April 19, 2013

Academic Writing II – week 3, October 19th, 2012

It’s just a first draft
  1. Freewriting 1: 5 mins
  2. Freewriting 2: same but for a neighbour: edit your freewriting #1 to create a piece of writing that you would be happy to let your neighbour in class read (or write something completely new, or mix the two, it’s up to you)
  3. Freewriting 3: same but for whole class – edit your freewriting #2 (if necessary, if you want to) to create a piece of writing that could be read by the whole class.
  4. Freewriting 4: how did your writing change? Did it change? Which was easier to write? Which was most interesting to read?
  5. Get back  your last week’s papers
  6. Random groups of 5-6 students: share your list of possible topics, then say which one you chose & why. Make suggestions, ask questions, give feedback.
  7. Changed your mind about topic? If so, change it now.
  8. Each person told the whole class about their topic ( title only, not reasons)
  9. Freewriting 5: about today’s class.
  10. Hmwk:Comparison/contrast essay draft #1 – don’t worry about format, or grammar, or spelling. These can be dealt with later.
    1. I just found this short essay comparing private and public universities in Egypt. It’s not a great example (I’m sure you can write something better), but it might give you some ideas.
  11. Schedule for this semester:
    1. Nov 2 – compare/contrast due
    2. Nov 30 – persuasive essay due
    3. Jan 11 – “responding to a reading” due.
First draft - a handwritten example
First draft
Hemingway quote: "The first draft of everything is shit."
Hemingway quote: “The first draft of everything is shit.”

Academic Writing I – week 3, April 27th, 2012

Today’s work

Thanks to Ms. Iguchi for the report, and to Ms. Kimura for the photo.

  1. We did in the textbook Practice 4, 5, 6, 7 on pages 9, 10, 11, 12
  2. We did “Think about the sample of essay topic” on page 14
  3. We learned “Basic Reference Citations in the MLA Handbook” (handout)



  1. Find out about C.S.Lewis and W.T. Kirkpatrick.  Who are they, and where did you find the information?
  2. Find “Politics and the English language” in English and in Japanese. Write the details using MLA format.
Homework for May 11th, 2012
Homework for May 11th, 2012. Photo by Ms. Kimura. Click on photo to see a larger image.