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IELTS General Training Task 1 Planning your writing - ielts lesson plans pdf

IELTS General Training Task 1 Planning your writing-ielts lesson plans pdf

IELTS General Training Task 1 Planning your writing
An activity which helps students plan their writing for IELTS General Task 1 and use a process which
helps them maximise their marks in each criteria.
Time 60-70 minutes
Additional sample task - one copy for each student:
materials http://www.ielts.org/pdf/115029_General_Training_Writing_sample_task_-
required: _Task_1.pdf
Worksheet 1 - one copy for each student
Worksheet 2 - one copy for each student
Worksheet 3 - one copy for each student
Aims: to enable students to plan their writing to get good marks for task
achievement and coherence
to provide students with some useful lexis that will increase the formality
and cohesion of their letters
to help students paraphrase the rubric
to raise students' awareness of the marking criteria and what they can do to
help their grade for each one
1. Introduce the topic of room-mates and write the following questions on the board. Ask students to
discuss them in pairs for two minutes:
Have you ever had a room-mate? What are some good and bad things about having a
How can a room-mate make it difficult for you to study?
What kind of accommodation do you think college students prefer?
Ask a few students to share their answers in open class.
2. Distribute the sample task face down and tell students not to turn over. Tell students they are
going to see an IELTS General Writing Task 1 question and they have 30 seconds to decide who
they have to write to and what three things they must do in their letter. Ask students to turn the
paper over then after 30 seconds they must compare their answers with a partner. In feedback,
elicit that they are writing to the accommodation officer of the college and that they have to cover
the three bullet points.
3. Ask students to discuss the questions on Worksheet 1, Part 1 in pairs or small groups. Feedback
as follows:
Do you need to write in a formal or informal style? How do you know?
? UCLES 2015. For further information see our Terms and Conditions
IELTS General Writing Task 1
Formal. You are writing to the college accommodation officer. You are told to start
`Dear Sir or Madam'.
How many paragraphs do you think you need and what information will go in each
One for each bullet point, plus a closing paragraph. Tell students this makes it really
easy for the examiner to decide if you have done everything you need to, which is
the first thing they look for.
How can you make it clear to the examiner that you are beginning a new paragraph?
Leave a line. Start with a topic sentence.
The first bullet point says `describe the situation'. Do you think it's OK to do this by copying
the rubric and changing the pronoun, like this?
I live in a room in college which I share with another student. However, there are many
problems with this arrangement and I find it very difficult to work.
No, you must paraphrase.
Do you think there needs to be a connection between the problems you have, the reasons
it's difficult to work and the kind of accommodation you prefer?
Yes. It makes the letter easier to follow.
4. Tell students they are going to prepare to write the first paragraph and have them discuss the
questions on Worksheet 1, Part 2. Feedback as follows:
We usually start a formal letter by saying why we are writing. Do you know a useful phrase
for that?
I am writing with regard to ...
Your letter is not good news for the accommodation officer. Do you know a useful, formal
phrase for introducing bad news, or a problem?
I regret to inform you that ...
Do you know any words or phrases that mean the same as these?
a room in college = college accommodation
another student you share a room with = my room-mate
problems = issues/difficulties
difficult = hard/not possible
work = study/
5. Give students five minutes to write the opening paragraph using the phrases and words from the
previous stage, then ask them to compare their work in pairs or small groups. Hand out
Worksheet 2, paragraph 1, for them to compare.
? UCLES 2015. For further information see our Terms and Conditions
IELTS General Writing Task 1
6. Elicit the possible consequences of having a room-mate who plays loud music (can't concentrate
on your work), then elicit what type of accommodation you'd prefer if you have this problem (quiet).
Focus students on the table in Worksheet 3, and have them brainstorm two more issues along
with the difficulties they create and the possible solutions.
7. Focus students on the sentence in Worksheet 2, paragraph 2 and elicit the cause-effect
structure. Elicit that the other two sentences in this paragraph (bullet point 2) will have the same
structure. Elicit other phrases for introducing the effect (As a result; This means; As a
consequence; Consequently).
Elicit what markers they could use when introducing the other problems (Another issue is; The final
problem concerns).
Then ask students to complete the second paragraph in the space provided on Worksheet 2.
8. Ask the students to discuss the questions on Worksheet 3 (below the table), then feedback as
Paragraph 3
Why do you want to change to a different type of accommodation?
Because of the reasons in the previous paragraph. Therefore, you need to make the
link clear. Elicit phrases for doing this:
`As a result of these problems ...'
`In light of the problems described above ...'
How can you say `I want' in a formal letter?
e.g. `I would be grateful if you would consider + VERB+ing ...'
Paragraph 4 and close
Paragraph 3 is asking the accommodation officer for help, so you need to thank them. What
formal phrase can you use here?
`I would be very grateful for any assistance you can provide with this matter.'
How do you finish a formal letter that starts `Dear Sir or Madam'?
`Yours faithfully'
Ask students to use these phrases to finish paragraphs 3 and 4 in the boxes provided on
Worksheet 2.
9. Elicit the four marking criteria (task achievement; coherence and cohesion; grammatical resource;
lexical resource) and make sure students understand what each one means. Ask students to look
at their completed letters on Worksheet 2 and discuss what features of their letters would help
them get good marks in each criteria.
? UCLES 2015. For further information see our Terms and Conditions
IELTS General Writing Task 1

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