英文

A Test Taker's Journey:IELTS Writing Task 2: Organising your answer (4)

【明報專訊】Last time we discussed how to open the first argument paragraph. We came up with this:

(0) Admittedly, streaming can facilitate teaching, and this can make a teacher's job easier in an educational setting.

Now, let us carry on from here. Here we continue to explain how streaming can ''make a teacher's job easier''. At this point, it is important to bear in mind that the question is about the ''disadvantages'' and ''advantages'' of streaming, and these two words are in the plural. Therefore, you are supposed to talk about at least two advantages, both of them supported by examples.

A well-advised strategy is to name two advantages that are related to both students and teachers. The first advantage we can think of is probably how streaming allows teachers to spend less time on catering to different educational needs, and we have to offer some explanation. Here is an example:

(1a) To begin with, streaming allows teachers to spend less time on catering to different educational needs. When students are divided into groups of similar academical abilities, it is less likely for a teacher to have to help an ''outlier'' catch up with the rest of the class.

After the explanation (or elaboration) part, give an example:

(1b) Just imagine how much teaching time can be saved in an English lesson about the present continuous when all students have a reasonably good understanding of the present simple.

We will then write about the second advantage, which will be about students:

(2a) When teachers have more time to spare, students will benefit as well, as they will enjoy more opportunities to engage in productive interactions with teachers.

Again, we have to supply an example:

(2b) Their questions are more likely to be responded to, so is their feedback.

By now we have laid out what we have to say about the advantages. We can add another sentence to conclude the paragraph:

(3) Judging from these advantages, streaming does seem to be a preferable pedagogical practice.

We use the word ''seem'' to suggest our reservations. The alliteration (preferable pedagogical practice) is coincidental.

We have now finished writing the first argument paragraph. We can see that it basically includes a topic sentence, a point, elaboration, an example, and a small conclusion. The key is to ensure that your train of thought is as clear as possible. Always remember that you have to guide the reader (examiner) to your conclusion step by step.

We will discuss the second argument paragraph. Until then, happy Chinese New Year.

(For previous issues, visit: link.mingpao.com/61866.htm

■Writer's Profile

Terence Yip (葉凱楓) is passionate about English more than anything else. Never has he studied or worked in an English-speaking country, but he scored 8.5 in IELTS nevertheless, and is ceaselessly honing his skills as a test taker with the aspiration to score 9 someday.

(Email: terenceyipmingpao@outlook.com)

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