August 22nd, 2013
Today, I learned about what is the topic sentence. Sometimes, I am very confusing which one is which. Is that “too general” or “too specific?” I want to know more about that how the difference between those two. I think so far so good:) I am very excited to learn more about Academic writing, especially how to write essay. Because I never learned that before. Therefore, I am very excited to study now. Writing is my weakness point. I should study more and more. I also thought that the diagnostic pre-test was very interested to me. I did not know what is the “Plagiarism” and “citing.” I want to learn more about that as soon as possible. The seven steps of the writing process was easy to understand the structures of basic writing. I want to write good strong supporting sentences for my writing. This is very difficult for me. Lastly, I want to write some essays with correct grammar sentences. Thank you!!
This is a good reflection of what you have been learning in 341W this week! I think there is no end to learning about academic writing. There is so much to it, but that is also the fun part of it. One advice to improve or get new ideas to write, is to read academic papers written by other people (this is from my own experience). I think it opens up your possibilities to write, organize, and express in different ways. That’s why peer feedback will be a good practice! I will do my best to support your learning :)
Hi Eri!! Thank you for sharing your reflection:)) I agree with you!! Yaaa, sometimes, I have been confusing which sentence is “too general” or “too specific.” My week subject is also writing because we didn’t learn how to write in Japanese colleges!! Right?? Do our best and let’s study together:))
August 27, 2013
Today, I learned about what is the topic sentence. Topic sentence contains three main points, main topic and controlling idea, complete sentence, and clear sentence. We did some exercise to write about the topic sentence from each paragraph. It was a little difficult to write a sentence clearly because the contents of the paragraph was little difficult. However, it was a good practice for me. When I write a topic sentence, it is important to write a good controlling idea concisely. This is a key of the topic sentence I think. To use some transition word is also important of a paragraph more coherently. I want to learn more about how to use those transition words in my writing. Sometimes, it is confused me which transition word is correspond with the sentence. I want to learn more about that part. I have a question, Hami! When I write a paragraph in your class, how many words should I write? If you have time, please tell me about it. Thank you!
Hi Eri, Yaaa I think so. We already learned how to write last year, but I thought I didn’t improve it….However, you can write a good tpic sentence because almost answers of homework are yours!! Right?? I really like your sentences:))
The exercise we did to practice writing a topic sentence required a little bit of your reading skills. I think you did a good job though! You grasped the main idea (or the big picture) of the paragraph, and wrote a clear topic sentence. I agree that a coherent paragraph needs some transition words. Just be careful not to use it too much, and always use it with a purpose.
As for the number of words in a paragraph: is this for the assignment or for any homework in general? Let me know :)
Thank you for your comment:)
I means in general.
200-250 words will be a good amount. It should probably be no more than 300 words :)
Also, try to click on “reply” when you reply to someone. It will make it easier to see the connection between the conversations ;)
August 29, 2013
These two days, I learned about how to write a concluding sentence. Concluding sentence has two main points, it signals the end of the paragraph, and the other is the most important idea to remember, such as summarize the main point or repeat the topic sentence in a different way. Concluding sentence has many signal words on it. I want to write a good concluding sentence for my writing. Peer editing was also help me to realized my grammar mistake. I know my grammar skill is not good enough. I always miss the verb…. especially verb tense, subject-verb agreement, and verb voice. Hami, how can I fix my writing. How can I write a complete sentence with correct grammar?? I want to practice more. If you have some ideas or thought, please let me know. Feedback was good to read other classmate’s paragraph. I found out how to write a good sentence from their paragraphs. It is also important to find their main topic and supporting idea. In my writing, this is hard to connect all my idea or example to the main topic. I want to learn this thing more.
From my personal experience, writing the topic sentence and concluding sentence has always been a challenge for me too. You can write a lot for the supporting sentences, but to think about how to make a concise, clear, and “not-so-wordy” topic/concluding sentence takes so much time (at least for me)!! Practicing with many different paragraphs is one way, but editing and revising the same paragraph is also helpful. This is because you can explore multiple ways to express the sentence. Maybe you can give it a try some time. As for grammar… that’s a tough question! I think there is no “correct” answer to this. However, I believe that practice helps AND you have to aware of (or notice) those points. It’s the small moments when you suddenly realize, “Wait a minute, that’s not right!!” that takes you to another level. Of course, I will help too :)
Hi Eri, I agree with your reflection!! Today, someone gave me advice that my paragraph need a stronger topic sentence and concluding sentence. I’ve really appreciated someone because it is difficult to analyze objectively our paragraph ourselves. If you have a time, would you like to check it each of us???
Hi Yuka, please click on the “reply” button, so that the layout will look like you are on the same thread as Eri next time :)
Hami, sorry… I mistook and didn’t know how to change.. I’ll be careful next time.
September 3, 2013
Today, I learned about Unity and Coherence. Unity means that one main idea of a paragraph. I should discuss only one idea but not other things. It is a little difficult to write about only one topic. Because I usually write more another ideas in my writing. That means my topic is not unity. I want to learn more about this that how can I write only one main idea in my writing. The other thing is coherence. Coherence has 4 main points, repeat key noun, use consistent pronoun, use transition signals to link ideas, and arrange your ideas in logical order. I am not good at finding a meaning of pronoun that is replace the main meaning. I want to practice more in your class. Also I want to learn more about how I can write a logical and smooth sentence.
September 5, 2013
Today, I learned about how to use transition signals. Transition signals have some rule when I write some sentences. For example, FANBOYS (Coordinating conjunction, or Compound sentence) only use for Complete sentence which means two independent clauses are connect it. On the other hand, Subordinating conjunction is only use for dependent clause(main sentence) such as although, after, as soon as, since (etc). Complex sentence are independent clause and dependent clause. Dependent clause is not complete sentence.
I understand the rule a little bit, however, when I use this signal word, I always confusing which one is right transition signal. I have to focus on Grammar more. If I understand more about noun clause, Adjective clause, and Adverb clause, I think it is more easy to use those transition words. I guess I should work on that :)
This is a good summarization on the transition signal lesson we had on Thursday. There are a lot of rules you need to learn in order to master it. However, mastering it will mean less mistakes! Transition signals are confusing because they all have different meanings and requirements for punctuation or grammar. As you mentioned, understanding these and being able to identify them in a sentence will be a good practice for you BEFORE you start writing. Hopefully, they will serve as examples for you.
September 10, 2013
Today I learned about how to write a essay. Usually, essay has 5 paragraphs. Each essays contains of three parts, introduction, body and conclusion. Especially, thesis statement is very important for all kinds of essays, because this is the key of the main idea of the essay. It is usually the end of the last sentence of the introduction paragraph. Before I write my essay, I should always think about who is the reader, this message is for whom. I have to think about the audience first. I am so ashamed that I did not notice the important thing until now. When the reader see the thesis statement in my writing, they can find out briefly what I want to going to write about. It has to be complete sentence and not to write vague or question sentences. Writing is so difficult and profound. I guess I need your help and feedback, Hami:)
I hope you were able to get a good overview of what an essay is. It’s very important to understand the general idea of each part. They are all crucial for an essay!! We will start writing an essay very soon. Don’t forget them :)
September 12, 2013
These two days, I checked my classmate’s assignments and feedback their writing. I noticed that most difficult aim of the assignment is that I should think about the audience first, then I write down my essay. Because if I do not know the reader, my essay is meaningless. I did not focus on the reader from the first time. That was my BIG mistake, I notice that! I learned that many essays have some kinds of purpose for the audience. I was totally not think enough about this. It was a good lesson for my writing. When I look through my classmate’s essay, I tried to think about who is their audience? This message for whom? I inquired myself first. After that, I realized that maybe this message for people who live in Hawaii, and maybe this message for people who want to live in Hawaii. I understood their writing more when I thought their reader first. My essay is the same as this too. I tried to write for people who want to study in the US. I tried to think that these messages are enough to tell my audiences.
This peer review activity was really helpful for my writing on the fact.
This is great!!! I am really happy to know that there was a big realization for you. I think you have realized that the way you write changes depending on who your audience is. Any type of studying or skill will have a PURPOSE. Always understand what the purpose is, and it will change the way you study/learn.
(PS: I’m doing all the activities in class for a purpose too!!)
September 17, 2013
Today I learned about what the thesis statement is. Usually, thesis statement comes at the end of the introduction paragraph and should be one sentence. Thesis statement is a very important of all kinds of essays, because the audience can easy to understand the main idea, and what is the writer exactly want to talk about. All essays are connecting to the thesis statement. That is why (I suppose) thesis statement is the key of the whole essay. If my thesis statement is not clear, my essay is also vague. Thesis statement has three important keys that is divide the topic into subtopics, indicates logical division, and guide the reader from one subtopic to the next. It seems like narrow down the main topic and after that is spread it out each subtopic. Then, conclusion has to be the same topic of the thesis statement. I think that is the most difficult one to think about how to connect to the main topic in my essay. I want to practice to write an essay more. Thank you!
September 19, 2013
These two days, I learned about what the concluding paragraph is. Concluding sentence is the final paragraph in an essay. It has three purposes. It signals the end of the essay, it reminds the reader of the main points (it has two ways to do, 1, summarize the subtopics, 2, restate in a different way) and it leaves the reader with the final thoughts on the topic. Concluding paragraph have to be connect all the subtopics and thesis statement in my essay. That is why, thesis statement is very important in whole of the essay!! Concluding paragraph is seems like leave your ideas and main topic to the reader again. That means the reader understand what is the main topic and what is the writer want to exactly say that. Concluding paragraph has main rule to restate the whole essay again. It has 3 or 5 sentences in the paragraph.
I’m sorry for the late response to your learning journal entries! I read your past two entries, and they reflect/summarize what we have learned very well. I hope this process is helping you to review what we are learning.
The thesis statement is very important because it is like the back-bone of your essay. Strong thesis statement will help you AND the reader! There are basic rules that you should follow in writing, but don’t forget that writing helps you to express your ideas. Don’t let it restrict you from being creative. There are always ways to get around the rules :P
September 24, 2013
Today I practice writing about my hometown. First, I think about many ideas as much as possible, then I wrote these ideas in brainstorming and outlining in the class. After that, I did some peer editing each other. My classmate pointed it out that my ideas are not connected to the main topic. I should think about the ideas again. I think how to connect those ideas to the main topic is so difficult. I need to work on that more. On the other hand, brainstorming map is easy to notice what the writer want to talk about. It is easy to come up with many ideas. But to organize these ideas are difficult I think. Next assignment is comparison essay. I will try to organize my ideas and topic before I write the essay. That work makes me a good practice to organize in my writing.
September 26, 2013
These two days I learned about how to organize the comparison/contrast essays. First, it has two different types of organizations. One is point by point organization, and the other is block organization. Point by point organization is more easy to understand because the reader can see how the difference and similarity between two aspects at once. This pattern is more similar to the logical division version. Block organization is more complicated I think. I have to organize well before I write the essay. This type of organization is to arrange all the similarities put into one block and all the differences put into another block. It should be write separately (similarities block and differences block). In this organization, I think how to use the right or appropriate transition word is important for the compare/contrast essays. If not, my essay is not smooth and flow then reader might be confused a lot. However, I will try to write this organization style in the last assignment!!
Thank you for diligently posting your learning journal! I enjoy reading it because I understand how you guys are learning in class. Brainstorming is useful to freely jot down the ideas that come up to your mind and organize them. The venn diagram (the one with two circles) will be useful when you want to organize the ideas for a comparison/contrast essay. If you have time, re-organize your venn diagram for your ideas on Christmas. You had many ideas, but it looked like it might be a bit difficult to see.
Good luck writing your outline!
October 1, 2013
Today I learned about how to connect two sentences to use the contrast signal words. Usually, that signal words have two main groups, one is called “CONCESSION” or Unexpected result, the other is “OPPOSITION”. “They are many different transition words, however they are very useful in my writing.” For example, above the sentence I wrote just now is wrong! Because when I use “Transition words and phrases” (however, nevertheless, nonetheless, in contrast, in(by) comparison, on the other hand) those transition words cannot connect two sentences to use only one comma. I need to use semicolon and comma or separate the two sentences. “They are many different transition words; however, they are very useful in my writing.” is a correct sentence. I always confused when I use these transition words, but it is important to know these rule again. It was good practice for me!
Yay! You’re reflecting on what you have been learning. And yes, be careful how you use the transition words or phrases. The difficult part about the rules in writing is that it seems flexible, which can be confusing. Keep in mind there are general rules (like how to use transition words or use punctuation). I hope you will be able to notice some “errors” when you proofread!
October 3, 2013
Today I had peer-edditing and checked my classmates’s essay. This activity is good to know somebody’s strength and weakness from their writing. I am not good at Grammar therefore, I always had many mistakes in my essay. Luckily my partner is very good at Grammar so she can mix some parts for me. I really appreciate that. When I read her essay, I could know what was the main topic and what was the message in her writing. I think more important things is that make sure the reader can understand my essay easily and understand the main topic or main message. So I always think about is that enough information to them? Is that enough examples for them. I always try hard to think by myself. Hopefully I could write better for my second draft.
October 8, 2013
Today I practiced find some errors and correct to the right sentences. Many mistake sentences has parallel structures, fragments, run-on sentences, comma splices, choppy and stringy sentences. I noticed that I made some mistake of these problems. In this work sheet, it was a good to know why this sentence is not good, how can I change the correct sentences. After finished the work, I look through my essay one more time with very carefully, and checked it whether I did the same mistake or not. Especially grammar structures! It was a good practice to find my mistake sentences on that work. I will try to do my best to submit the final draft.
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