At Orewa College we have recently finished our senior Practise Exams. I asked my students to reflect on how they did in their exams and also asked what they would find useful as a revision activity. A few students asked for help on how to develop a body paragraph. I teach PEEL (Point, Example, Explanation and Link) but the request got me thinking about what more I could do to help them.
What I have done previously:
After a bit of research and discussion with my colleague and friend, Althea White, I discovered some further ideas to incorporate:
- Explain the point, explain the evidence, add and explain more evidence.
- Include transitional phrases.
- Refer back to the essay topic at the end of the paragraph.
- Explain what human behaviour/nature is.
- Include tips on what the marker will look for and what Excellence level thinking is.
- Have a checklist to tick off each part of the body paragraph.
I have really enjoyed researching and thinking about how to do this and feel like I have learnt quite a lot. It has also affirmed what I was already doing as a good place to start.
Here are the presentations that I made:
Some helpful links that I found:
- Step by step explanation: http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/paragraphs/
- Transitions: http://www.aims.edu/student/online-writing-lab/tools/transitions.php
So hopefully this will help my students, I’ll let you know how it goes.