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The Clever Compositions Club

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This teaching idea deals with composition writing in a new and amusing way. Have you ever thought of the great amount of work marking compositions involves? Don´t you feel frustrated
when your students read their marks (and that´s that!) the next day? Why not give them an insight into the whole process while catering for diversity at the same time? Read on!
Students often find it difficult to write compositions; they are usually afraid of their teacher´s comments, as they fear low marks coming. The following suggestions will contribute to relieve their tension. The students are in charge all the time, while the teacher supervises their work discreetly and is always available to help when needed.

Divide the class into groups of 5/6. Distribute these roles according to the students´ abilities: writer, proofs reader, language expert and editors (there should be at least 2 of the latter.)
Note that different students could play different roles at different times. Alternatively, if you want to keep everybody busy, ask your students to write a short composition each and try one (or more) of the other roles afterwards. Hand out the cards below accordingly:


Write a story on the topic of your choice. Use about 100 words.
Then pass on your work to the proofs reader.


Check your classmate´s composition. Tick (X) a box every time you spot a mistake. Then pass this card to the language expert.

( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )

( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )


Read your classmate´s work and the proof reader´s card. If you disagree with the number of mistakes s/he has found, discuss the matter with him/her. Then find the mistakes and correct the sentences.
Pass the corrected version to the editors.


You must evaluate (awarding between 1-10 points) your classmate´s composition. Be fair! Discuss your marks with your colleague editor/s and reach an agreement.

When you are all done, read the composition out and aloud and see how you like it.

If the students´ inspiration fails, the teacher should provide a handful of topics to write about. Some authors give you an opening sentence. Instead, I am going to give you some final sentences
to fire the students´ imagination: 'Sorry, darling, I don´t love you any more.' ; 'When he woke up, he realized he couldn´t move.' And how do you like 'She felt really proud of herself '? Writing can be fun. Get your students started now!

Devised by Joan M. Díez Clivillé
IESI Ramon Berenguer IV
Amposta, Tarragona (SPAIN)
[email protected]
[email protected]

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