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07

25

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Quick Write 072511 “Presentation on Salon: Since You Asked”

Today was the presentation day for the students who’ve been taking my reading/writing class for non-English majoring students. They take two English classes a week, one by a native speaking English teacher and the other by a Japanese bilingual teacher, both of which are conducted in English. This semester, my students have been reading “Since You Asked” articles on Salon for a Quick Write prompt. They read a letter from an anonymous reader who has a personal issue, identify the problem through group discussions, brainstorm the advice or solutions to the problem just like its columnist Cary Tennis on Salon does, and do Quick Writing for 10 minutes individually. To wrap up this writing practice, they were assigned a new “Since You Asked” article to give a group presentation explaining the issue and proposing solutions. After two weeks of preparation period, seven groups gave 8 minute-presentations today. Some groups created hand-drawn illustrations to explain the issues visually, some groups made eye-catching PowerPoint slides. They did a fairly good job even though the preparation period was rather short. Plus, it wasn’t an easy task for them because the articles I’d chosen for them were pieces that English speaking readers had written to an English speaking columnist seeking for advice or help for their personal issues. They were not something fictional, modified, edited for educational purposes. They were real, unmodified, unedited, written for an online magazine. I was glad to observe that my students actively and bravely participated in group discussions trying to identify the issues in the assigned article, and eventually came up with their own advice or solutions, no matter simple or unelaborated they may be, to the readers who’d sent the letter to Salon. I was very proud of them for striving to give their best on this difficult task.

(20 min for writing / 301 words)

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This is the "Since You Asked" columnist, Cary Tennis.
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Aya

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