Highlighted Key Writing Guidelines for ESL Foundation Learners

“True teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross; then, having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create their own.” � Nikos Kazantzakis

As a recurring experience for several years in language education, effective writing instruction to English as a Second Language (ESL) learners could be probably attained through the constant incorporation of knowledge, language and organization (KLO) where information is obtained through guided reading reinforced by understanding vocabularies and grammar points for them to be able to assimilate and convey authentic ideas. To ensure the acquisition of this written proficiency, it is advised that teachers should have systematized methods of instructions instead of directly and confidently tasking the students to write without preliminary instructive- conditioning measures.

This proposed strategy attempts to organize and immerse students to garner enough knowledge on what to write, familiarize the target language to be manipulated while being led to practically systematized organizations of writing.

Introductory procedures

To allow a clear interplay of the three cited elements, a prioritized reading passage must be prepared. It is recommended that an authentic material which interweaves these components prior to writing must be processed. In here, advanced writing students will be engaged in any fitting springboard as sensibly procured. To elucidate this suggested concept, general and specific procedures with corresponding rudiments are hereby highlighted.

Procedure (1) one fundamentally involves the preparation of a right reading passage. The teacher searches for a reading material that suits the level of the learners, checks on the possibility of integrating expressions that are to be activated, simplifies or customizes embedded thoughts for easy comprehension of knowledge in the material if needed, and weighs and considers the probabilities of tasking and prescribing structures for intended written outputs. These four major moves are expected to be overtly embodied in everyone’s teaching objectives and are expected to be reflected under a prepared writing rubric for the assessment of written results.

Procedure (2) two occurs through the involvement between the teacher and students on reading, vocabulary studies that require exemplification of difficult words through visuals, realia, examples, translations using the students’ native language if necessary, word relationships through hyponyms, word structures, word classifications, or even through context analysis. For comprehension, they will be instructed to read the passage, answer the comprehension questions which were tailored in a way that the answers are to be sequenced according to how they occur in the text for easy writing organization. It is expected that the questions have been formulated in varied dimensions or levels to be able to substantiate understanding of the whole passage. As a basic approach in text understanding vocabularies are to be unlocked through the utilization of any possible methods towards terminology difficulties. As a final test of comprehension, a schema is suggested in which the students are made to fill-in missing details; a flow chart can replace it upon teachers’ discretion. Other supplementary related-activities to accentuate can be beneficial under this step.

Procedure (3) three composes prewriting activities whereby the teacher incorporates the processing of the target language to be used in the writing exercise. All these language whether they are content or functional must be elucidated through examples which in turn serve as models or patterns for in-depth understanding leading to appropriate management of the language focuses. Additionally, the students’ responses from the comprehension questions must be reviewed for the purpose of stressing the right points which will give way for them to make some corrections should some have been misconstrued. These are necessary procedural components since they will aid in writing knowledge. As a final step before writing, other useful cues must be highlighted such as capitalization, indentions, spelling, and logical sequencing of events, cohesion and coherence, the number of paragraphs, the parts of the paragraphs (topic sentence, supporting details, and concluding statements), introduction and conclusions, among other pertinent matters that encompass writing organization. These are to be managed when they were not taken as previous lessons and to be reviewed if they were exemplified formerly to refresh the students.

Procedure (4) four provides students’ opportunities to write by using the comprehension questions and other related-exercises as guides while they manipulate the given target languages. Moreover, this integrates the three components namely: knowledge, language and organization by following the rudiments of the specific writing guide.

Procedure (5) five prepares teachers to create an evaluation scheme to assess the performance of the students. All the procedural contents are expected to be overtly embodied in everyone’s teaching objectives and are expected to be reflected under a prepared writing rubric for the assessment of students’ written outputs.

Emphasis of procedures

To ensure their relevance under any appropriately chosen reading materials prepared, it is best to explain these procedures.

Procedure (1) one allows teachers to reflect on the following questions gearing towards the achievement of knowledge, language and organization. Does this material involve effective reading? Does it suit the level of my learners? Is the topic interesting to them? Is it possible to integrate transitional expressions? Can the content words be transformed into similar forms to relay varied meanings? Can I incorporate other language focuses? Do I need to simplify this material? Can the students apply the rudiments of writing that is to be prescribed? Can they develop paragraphs out of the details present in the chosen passage?

Procedure (2) two deals with exercises for the purpose of emphasizing knowledge. In here, students are asked to read the text. In the reading process, teachers monitor and address the vocabulary difficulties observed from the students. It is suggested that they simplify this part by visuals, realia, examples, translations using the students’ common language, word relationships through hyponyms, word structures, word classifications, or even through context analysis. Also, vocabulary comprehension by given statements to exemplify meanings based on the passage should be another priority.

The students are tasked to read and identify the words that have the closest meanings to the main words. To get a favorable feedback, there is a need to elicit students’ responses. The sentences formulated here are for the purpose of ensuring thorough understanding of the vocabularies together with additional words that relate to them. It is also suggested that teachers explicate the relationships of every major term that produces similar meanings through varied ways such as some of the examples below.

1. University

It is called a university because it is a higher education institution.
Higher education includes colleges and universities.
In higher education, the students are secondary graduates intending to do a degree.
Usually, a degree runs from three to four years.
The university offers many degrees for students to learn.

2. Established
It is an established higher education institution.
It is well-known university for many students receive degrees.
It is recognized by educational groups from the government.
Numerous people know about this university because of the course offered.
Many students have excelled in many fields of learning.
It has a good reputation when it comes to learning and teaching.
It has shown its ability to produce better if not the best graduates.
This university has produced successful graduates.

3. Act
It is an established and a recognized institution because of a decree from the government.
An act is a decree coming from the government.
A decree is also an order from the government.
A decree is an order or a mandate from the government.
A mandate is the same as a decree.

4. Recognized
The university is accepted and honored to offer courses in the country.
It is accepted by many parents sending their children in a university.
Acknowledged is the same as recognized.
The government accepts this university to offer varied courses.
If the government accepts, then it is a recognized higher education institution.

5. Diverse
It has different courses for students to choose.
The courses have varied specializations.
Different, varied and many have the same meanings.
Many specializations mean many skills.
Specializations varied are areas of knowledge, skills or focuses under a degree.
6. career
When you enroll in this university, you’ll soon land a job.
Your future occupation is film editing because you are a film editor.
Your future livelihood will be film editing.
Your future position will be a film editor
A career is your profession.
A job is similar to occupation.

7. Options
It offers different courses; you’ll have many choices.
Maybe, your decision is film editing instead of film producing.
You can choose your preference from any of the specializations.
Preference is what you like or what you opt from the specializations.

8. Leading
It is a top university when it comes to medicine.
It is a top educational institution for medical courses.
If it is a top school, then it must be a major school for varied degrees.
It’s a leading school for medicine.

9. Programs
The courses offered by this university are its programs.
As a student, you can enroll in any of its program.
You can choose one of the many specializations in this program.
The medical program has different specializations.
One specialization is general medicine.
Specialization means an area of concentration.
The program contains what you are going to learn.
The program is the curriculum itself.

There are other suggested alternatives to process numerous vocabularies in a reading text. First, is vocabulary development through role-action relationship of which the students are going to match the skills or jobs being done under given statements. Additionally, we can possibly use vocabulary understanding through word transformation. In here, the students are made to write the degree subjects of the stated jobs. Furthermore, we can inspire comprehension of vocabularies by paragraph completion. The students are tasked to complete the paragraph by using the above vocabularies through the given words for them to choose as responses.

Under the reading process, comprehensions of ideas are also of major significance. Some of these can be highlighted through varied methods such as through levels of questions. The students are requested to answer varied- leveled questions in complete sentences. These have to be answered to aid in the writing activity and likewise, comprehension by completion of profiles is suggested which allows the students to fill-in the blanks in the profiles found at profiles A and profiles B. answers are based from the information obtained from the reading passage.

Procedure (3) involves review and discussions of language points and organizational elements which usually happen after absorbing details from the reading passages by way of comprehension and vocabulary studies. All reading passages do have different language focuses. It will depend on the curriculum which the students are being set into by their language instructors. Some of these languages are similar to the ones below.

The simple tenses may involve simple past, present, future and even the past participle. The transitional words such as moreover, furthermore, additionally, to add, also, besides, likewise, additionally, comparably, similarly, equally, among others are relevant to be stressed. Also, subject verb-agreement rules have to be underscored for these are needed in the enumeration of skills. Singular and plural nouns are pertinent to subject- verb agreement and they should be reviewed. The vocabularies with its transformed words have to be referred to the activities. Capitalization, indentions, spelling, logical sequencing of events, cohesion and coherence, the parts of the paragraphs (topic sentence, supporting details, and concluding statements), introduction body and conclusions are among the priorities of discussion. Above all, it is advisable to review the comprehension questions’ responses for the emphasis of knowledge brought about by the passage. When these cues are well observed, they can yield a written output vested with explicit knowledge, language, and organization principles.

Procedure (4) four incorporates the writing proper loaded with targeted grammatical and structural emphasis which is modeled from the selected passage. It has to have specific writing guides such as the example that follows.

1. Write Considering a Degree in College, as your title.
2. Write a profile of this university focusing on course offerings. Write presuming that you’re a student in this university. Feature all the best in it to persuade fresh secondary graduates to enroll any specializations.
3. Reflect on the following points to develop your contents per paragraph.
3.1 What would be the (2) two important things they have to consider in preparing for college degrees.
3.2 What will be your advice to these incoming college freshmen?
3.3 Why do you recommend the said university? Provide reasons per paragraph.
3.4 What professions will these graduates have?
3.5 What skills do graduates acquire after completing their specializations?
3.6 What are some success stories on taking a degree that you can share?
4. Use the completed comprehension questions and activities as guides in sequencing your contents.
5. Your composition should contain a minimum of 400 words with an introduction and (5) five paragraphs for the body.
6. The conclusion has been made.
6.1 Provide topic sentences, supporting details.
6.2 Relate topic sentence and the supporting details in every paragraph.
7. Use transitional expressions.
8. Use subject-verb agreement.
9. Use appropriate verb tenses.
10. Transform and employ vocabularies to elucidate ideas.
11. Use proper indentions capitalization and punctuations.

Procedure (5) embodies the rudiments for performance assessment indicators. The following are some suggested evaluation criteria of the written works which may form the main components of a rubric to be distributed into numerical equivalents.

A. knowledge
1. Did the writer explore the content of the passage by following the instructions?
2. Did the writer have enough knowledge of the passage?
3. Did the writer use the exercises in sharing knowledge?
4. Did the exercise manifest importance to the writer in coining the knowledge Shared?
5. Was the specific writing guide helpful for knowledge assimilation?

B. language
1. Did the writer appropriately use the target language reemphasized by the teacher?
2. Did the writer use the proper tenses?
3. Did the writer use transitional expressions?
4. Was the subject -verb agreement properly utilized?
5. Did the writer use cohesive devices?
6. Did the writer focus more on functional words?
7. Was the writer able to transform words to express the difference between the positions and specializations?
8. Was the writer able to capitalize and punctuate appropriately?
9. Were the exercises helpful in aiding the writers’ composition?
10. Was the specific writing guide helpful for language use?

C. Organization
1. Did the writer respond for the purpose of writing regarding the choice of career?
2. Was the writer’s composition address to fellow students?
3. Was the writer an agent of spreading the ideas of what was written?
4. Was the writer’s tone formal or informal?
5. Did the composition manifest cohesion within sentences found in every paragraph?
6. Were the paragraphs coherent in the discussion of the topic?
7. Did the paragraphs contain topic sentences with corresponding supporting details?
8. Were the numbers of prescribed paragraphs followed?
9. Did the writer observe correct indentions?
10. Was the specific writing guide helpful in the organization of the written output?

Writing instructions’ behavioral objectives are desirably realized when knowledge, language and organizations (KLO) are explicitly contained under students’ written works as results of cautious and emphatic teachers’ facilitations. These three factors are the major reasons why writing imparts ideas clearly. In as long as an educator deals with ESL learners with less background or exposures to the language, it is recommended to process students’ activities with elaborated procedures. Through the concept of reinforcing writing instructions via any text-inspired comprehension exercises, we are made to understand that writing is being reinforced by reading and immersing with other background information- intensifying designed activities. In other words, an appropriate reading passage facilitates students’ accumulation of sufficient information background and knowledge of the target language/s before the introduction of writing rudiments. To attain this goal, a suitable chosen text must be served as a springboard to connect all identified teaching procedures stressed from the interactions between teachers and students.