Thursday, November 17, 2011

Competition and Cooperation

Idioms:

"get up on the wrong side of the bed"
Getting up on the wrong side of the bed means you wake up and start the day in a bad mood for no real reason.

Example: "He must have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. He is in a particularly nasty mood today." Today Sameth talks out loud to everyone who talks to him. He must have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.


"pie in the sky"
When an idea or scheme is pie in the sky, it means it is utterly impractical.

Example: "His ideas are always of the pie in the sky sort." Errik told me that to learn English is not important for reading and talking. His idea is pie in the sky sort.

Competition: [n] the act of competing as for profit or a prize
Cooperation: [n] joint operation or action

Questions:

1. discuss the following:

- A horse never runs so fast as when he has other horses to catch up and outpace. ~Ovid -

Competition is a
by-productive work, not its goal. A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others. ~Ayn Rand

- It seems as though all creatures can exist singly and alone. For example, a tree can exist solitary and alone on a given prairie or in a valley or on the mountainside. An animal upon a mountain or a bird soaring in the air might live a solitary life. They are not in need of cooperation or solidarity. Such animated beings enjoy the greatest comfort and happiness in their respective solitary lives. On the contrary, man cannot live singly and alone. He is in need of continuous cooperation and mutual help. For example, a man living alone in the wilderness will eventually starve. He can never, singly and alone, provide himself with all the necessities of existence. Therefore, he is in need of cooperation and reciprocity. ~Abdu'l-Baha

2. Can you think of an instance where you were involved in a healthy competition? Can you describe what made it healthy?

3. When do you feel competition ceases to be beneficial?

4. How can competition be protected from becoming unhealthy?

5. Can you think of a good example of people cooperation to achieve a common goal?

6. what are some ways in which cooperation can be improved in a group of people? It might be helpful to llok at the workplace, family or classroom as the group desiring to work together.

7. How can we contribute to developing group cooperation?
____________________
Vocabularies

*outpace (v) surpass in speed
*by-product (n) a secondary and sometimes unexpected consequence *soaring (adj) moving to great heights with little apparent effort
*prairie (n) an extensive, level or slightly undulating, a tract of grassland; meadow
*solitary (adj) alone; without companions,; unattended
*solidarity (no) a union of interests or purposes or sympathies among members of a group
*animated (adj) having life or vigor or spirit
*starve (v) die of food deprivation
*reciprocity (n) a relation of mutual dependence or action or influence

Planning


"Keep your ear to the ground"
If you keep your ear to the ground, you keep informed about something, especially if there are rumours or uncertainty.

Example: I will keep my ear to the ground and tell you if I hear of any vacancies in our apartment building. I always keep my ear to the ground when I hear the news about earthquake.

"Keep your eyes peeled"
If you keep your eyes peeled you are watching carefully for someone or something. Origin: This is another way of saying keep your eyes open as in keep your eyes lids open or peeled. When you peal something you take its cover off like the eyes and their eyelids.

Example: keep your eyes peeled for the bus. We wouldn't want to miss it while we are busying our coffee. My friend keep his eyes peeled while he is waiting for me.

Planning: [n] the act or process of drawing up plans or layouts for some project or enterprise.

Questions:

1. Discussion the following:
Good fortune is what happens when opportunity meets with planning. ~Thomas Edison

In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower

2. Do you often make plans for the things you need to do? Why or why not?

3. Why do you think planning is important?

4. When we make plans for ourselves, we focus on what we need to get done and how we can best achieve our goals and meet those needs. When we makes plans for others - like planning a party for our friends, or plans for our children - what do we need to consider?

5. Group Activity: In your groups, please plan a party for your friends. Please describe the steps required to finalize your plan.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Theatre

Idioms:

"out of sorts"
To be out of sorts means you are feeling a bit upset and depressed. Example; "I am sorry I was rude to you. I am feeling a little out of sorts today."

My brother was out of sorts yesterday. He yelled at me when I asked him for help. Whenever I can't understand English I feel out of sorts.

"gravy train"
To be gravy train means you have found an easy way to make lots of money. Example: "With this job I have to do so little to get paid so much. It is a real gravy train."

Jack works only five hours a day to get much paid. He rides on gravy train. Some people are lucky, they are not working hard but they get a lot of money. They are always on gravy train.

Theatre: [n] the art of writing and producing plays. [n] a building where theatrical performances or motion-picture shows can be presented.
Play: [n] a dramatic work intended for performance by actors on a stage. [n] a theatrical performance of a drama.

Questions:

1. Discuss the following:

-I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being. ~Oscar Wild

-You need three things in the theatre -- the play, the actors and the audience, and each must give something. ~ Kenneht Haigh

2. What form of live theatre exist in your own culture?

3. Have you ever performed in a play? If so, can you describe your experience?

4. Can you describe some of the plays you have seen? What did you enjoy most about them?

5. With the increasing popularity of movies do you feel live theatre is still a relevant art form? Why or why not?

6. What types of plays do you enjoy to watch? Would you be interested in doing to a play as a group?

abase - abnegate

*abase (v) to humiliate or disgrace
Synonyms: degrade, demean

Example: The elementary school teacher abased her students by drawing attention to their physical flaws. He abased himself by drinking so much; in fact, the whole family was ashamed.

*abate (v) to diminish in intensity
Synonym: ebb, lapse, let up, moderate, relent, slacken

Example: The storm gradually abated overnight. Luckily, the little girl's fever abated by midnight.

*abdicate (v) to renounce or give up a position or right
Synonyms: cede, quit, relinquish, resign, yield

Example: Despite the opposition, the chairman would not abdicate his position. The king finally decided to abdicate his throne in consideration of the public outcry.

*aberrant (adj) departing from what is normal or accepted
Synonyms: abnormal, anomalous, deviant, divergent, errant, irregular

Example: Max was a gentle dog so the aberrant barking was quite surprising. Normally a straight A student, her C and D grades struck her teachers as aberrant.

*abeyance (n) a state of temporary suppression or suspension
Synonyms: deferral, delay, dormancy, postponement, remission

Example: My sister kept her admirer in abeyance; she was just not that into him. The man kept his temper in abeyance while the children were present.

*abjure (v) to formally renounce, recant, or reject
Synonyms: forswear, recall, retract

Example: The knight abjured his allegiance to the kind. The businessman abjured his citizenship and headed for more profitable, foreign lands.

*abnegate (v) to deny or renounce
Synonyms: abjure, shed, surrender

Example: A true Buddhist could not find it hi himself to abnegate the Buddha's Teachings. A true Christian could not find it in himself to abnegate his God. She planned to abnegate her professional responsibilities for more carefree lifestyle.

To improve my English I must not abnegate my effort for learning it.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Although / though / even though / inspite of / despite

a) Study this example situation:
Last year Jack and Jill spent their vacation at the beach. It rain a lot, but they enjoyed themselves. You can say:

Although it rained a lot, they enjoyed themselves. (It rained a lot, but they....) or: In spite of / Despite the rain, they enjoyed themselves.

b) After although we use a subject+verb:
  • Although she smokes 20 cigarettes a day, she seems quite healthy.
  • Although it rained a lot, we enjoyed our vacation.
  • I didn't get the job, although I had all the necessary qualification.

After in spite of (or despite) we use a noun, a pronoun (this/that/what, etc.), or -ing:

  • In spite of the rain, we enjoyed our vacation.
  • I didn't get the job, despite my qualifications.
  • she wasn't well, but in spite of this she went to work.
  • Despite what I said last night, I still love you.
  • I am not tired, in spite of working hard all day.

Note that we say "in spite of," but despite (without of). You can also say in spite of / despite the fact that...:

  • In spite of the fact that I was tired, I couldn't sleep.
  • She seems healthy, despite the fact that she smokes 20 cigarettes a day.

Compare although and in spite of / despite:

  • Although the traffic was bad, I arrived on time.
  • I couldn't sleep, although I was very tired.
  • I couldn't sleep, despite being very tired.

c) Sometimes we use though instead of although:

  • I didn't get the job, though I had all the necessary qualifications.

In spoken English we often use though at the end of a sentence:

  • The house isn't very nice, I like the garden though. (= but I like the garden)
  • I see him everyday. I've never spoken to him though. (= but I've never spoken to him)

Even though is a stronger form of although:

  • Even though I was really tired, I couldn't sleep.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Prefix "In"

The prefix "in" is used with many words to indicate the negative or opposite meaning of the word. Read the definition beside each "in" prefix below, then chose the appropriate word from those listed below. We've done the first one to get you started.

Active; audible; capable; complete; consistent; conspicuous; correct; credible; curable; edible; efficient; eligible; excusable; expensive; sensitive

1- in_active_ not moving; idle
2- in_______ not fit to eat
3- in_______ not easily heard
4- in_______ not working well
5- in_______ not highly priced
6- in_______ not easy to forgive
7- in_______ not even or regular
8- in_______ not not able to be healed
9- in_______ not finished
10- in_______ not able to do
11- in_______ not qualified to do; unfit
12- in_______ not caring about others
13- in_______ not right; in error
14- in_______ not easily noticed
15- in_______ beyond belief
_____________________________
Answer:

2) inedible; 3) inaudible; 4) inefficient; 5) inexpensive; 6) inexcusable; 7) inconsistent; 8) incurable; 9) incomplete; 10) incapable; 11) ineligible; 12) insensitive; 13) incorrect; 14) inconspicuous; 15) incredible.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Culture


Idiom:

"knee-jerk reaction"
To have a knee-jerk reaction means to have an instant or instinctive response to a situation. Example: "Sorry, I didn't mean to yell. It was a knee-jerk reaction. You scared me."

"cutting edge"
When something is cutting edge it is at the forefront of progress in its area. Example: "His cell phone is cutting edge. It has all the latest technology."
..........

Culture: [n] the taste in art and manners that are favored by a social group.
[n] all the knowledge and values shared by a society.

Questions:

1- Discuss the following:

The individual is able to think, feel, strive, and work by himself; but he depends on much upon society --in his physical, intellectual, and emotional existence--that it is impossible to think of him, or to understand him, outside the framework of society. It is 'society' which provides man with food, clothing, a home, the tools of work, language, the forms of thought, and most of the content of thought; his life is made possible through the labor and the accomplishments of the many millions past and present who are all hidden behind the small word 'society'. ~Albert Einstein

2- Can you think of some of the characteristics of the own culture?

3- What are some of the benefits a strong culture provides? What are some drawbacks?

4- Is it possible for these cultures to adapt to the needs of our present day society?

5- How will you teach your children about your culture? Why will you teach them this way? ..........

Vocabularies

1- strive [v] to exert much effort or energy
2- society [n] an extended social group having a distinctive cultural and economic organization
3- framework [n] a structure supporting or containing something
4- drawback [n] negative result
5- adapt [v] adjust

Food & Nutrition

Idioms:
"Take something with a grain of salt"
If you take something with a grain or a pinch of salt, you consider that thing not to be completely true or accurate. Origin: This idiom is based on the idea that food tastes better and is easier to swallow if you add a little salt. So, if you add a little salt to an idea it will be easier to accept. Example: "You should take everything that he says with a grain of salt, because everyone knows that he likes to exaggerate
(1) things when he is speaking."

"eat your cake and have it too"
To have your cake and eat it or to eat your cake and have it too is to want more than you can handle or deserve, or to try to have two incompatible
(2) things. This old English Proverb(3) means that if you eat your cake you won't have it any more, so you need make a choice. Example: "Rick wants to have his cake and eat it too. He wants to be single but he does not want me to date anyone else."

Food: [n] any solid that is used as a source of materials in living things.
Nutrition: [n] the scientific study of food and drink


Question:
1- Discuss the following:

-It's amazing how pervasive(4) food is. Every second commercial is for food. Every second television episode takes place around a meal. In the city, you cannot go ten feet without seeing or smelling a restaurant. There are twenty food high hamburgers up on bill boards. I am acutely aware of food, and its omnipresence(5) is astounding(6). ~Adam Scott

-He that takes medicine and neglects diet, wastes the skill of the physician. ~Chinese Proverb

2- What is your favourite food? Can you make it yourself?
3- Is there a kind of food you would like to learn to cook?
4- How important is it for you to eat healthy foods?
5- What eating habits will you teach your children?
Why will you teach them these habits?
6- What role do you feel food plays in your family and culture?
7- Would you like to try new food from different culture? would you like to go to a restaurant together as a group or have pot-luck dinner where everyone can bring their favourite food?
..........

Vocabularies

1- exaggerate [v] To enlarge or overstate the truth about something.
2-
incompatible [adj] not able to exist adn act together in harmony
3-
Proverb [n] a saying about some important fact of experience that is accepted as true
4-
pervasive [adj] most frequent or common
5-
omnipresence [n] the condition of being everywhere at once (or appearing to be everywhere at once)
6-
astounding [adj] so surprisingly impressive that is stuns.

..........

Please share your idea on the idioms, quotes, proverb and answers any questions you want to share from your experience and your thought! Your ideas will be much helpful for world wide!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Ten Steps to Teaching Perfect Writing

By Cheryl Frost

With the rapid expansion of the Internet, it is clear that the quality of English writing—both American and British—has taken a dive for the worst. “Netspeak” is obtrusively taking over most electronic communications, making good writing practices increasingly scarce. With such a strong influence the Internet has over the world today, it is no wonder so few children can write. Even the most intelligent and successful business leaders seem small and insignificant when they distribute e-mails full of spelling errors and non-capitalized sentences. Therefore, it is more vital than ever to teach our children to write well before they are released into a relentless and competitive world.

The best way to learn to write is to practice. People learn best by making mistakes and correcting them for themselves. The following method of teaching writing enforces that very concept. It will work for established writers who need to polish their skills, and it will work for the struggling student who was absent the day they taught grammar. Whether you are a teacher, a homeschooling mom, or a tutor, you can teach anyone to be a better writer with a little patience and a lot of persistence.

With this writing technique, you as the teacher will act as an editor. You will give out the assignment, give the writers the freedom to write in their own style, edit their work, and return the work to the writers for revisions. You will edit the revisions, return the work, and await another revision. This will go on, back and forth, until the writing is flawless. Be consistent and unyielding in your editing process, and soon you will have a perfect writer (or a class full of perfect writers) on your hands.

Step One: Assign the Writing Task.
Have the student (or students) write something at least a page long—a story, a biography, a TV review, or a book report. For more advanced writers, assign a research paper or longer story. For students who hate to write, don’t pressure them into writing something massive, just whatever comes to mind. If it’s only two paragraphs, that’s still a good start. Depending on the student’s skill, this may be the only assignment he or she gets for the entire school year. But it will last the entire school year. Explain to the students that they will revise their writing assignments over and over until they are perfect, even if it takes all year. They need to understand this ongoing process or they might feel like each edit is a rejection.

Step Two: Assign a Deadline for the First Draft.
For the first draft, one week should be enough. You may have students (or if you are a mom, your one child) who will hand in nothing or just a sentence. Do not be discouraged by this. Chances are, the child is self-conscious about his or her writing and is reluctant to show you. It is vital that you address these students individually. Question each one until you find something he or she is interested in. That will be the topic you will assign. If they are still reluctant, have them start with one paragraph. Accept that paragraph as the first draft with the intention of building it up.

Step Three: Mark It Up
Edit each paper meticulously, using red pen or, if the paper was submitted electronically, the word processor’s markup feature. For every markup, however, you must include an explanation. If the error lies with subject/verb agreement, for example, explain what that means or refer the student to a page in his or her grammar book. Mark every missing punctuation and cross out unnecessary capital letters.

Step Four: Be the Editor
In addition to simply proofreading a paper, offer suggestions to the writer. Tell the writer to write more details about a specific subject. Request more adjectives or less repetition of the same words. Ask questions in your editing to prompt the student to clarify. Return the paper to the student to revise.

Step Five: Set Another Deadline
If necessary, allow the students to work on their revisions in class so they can ask questions if they need to. If you make them revise their work at home, you may never get it back. In class, as long as they know exactly what to change, the task should be easy for them.

Step Six: Editing with Praise
In this next edit, be sure to note how well the writing is coming along. Comments like “Did that really happen?” or “That’s funny!” will go a long way to boost your student’s confidence. Make more suggestions to improve the readability of the piece.

Step Seven: Don’t Give Up
After three revisions, you might be tempted to say, “This is good enough.” But remember that you are not looking for “good enough.” You are looking for perfect. The students may groan and complain, but you are doing the best thing in the world for them. Don’t give up now. Mark it up, send it back, set another deadline.

Step Eight: Get Picky
The student has done everything you’ve asked. It is time to nitpick, to find the most common and almost unnoticeable errors. Find errors that adults or even businesses commonly make. Make sure the paper has a good introduction and a satisfying conclusion. Make sure the title is catchy and the student’s name and headings are exactly as instructed. What about content? Is the story interesting enough?

Step Nine: Have the Student Read Aloud
When you think all the revisions are complete, have each student read his or her paper out loud, either in front of you or in front of the class. Make notes where the student stammers or hesitates. This might indicate a section where the sentence flow is poor. Your critique of their readings will mark the final edit of the piece.

Step Ten: Finalize and Congratulate
After the students read their papers aloud, have them make last minute revisions based on your critique and hand in the final copy. By this time, every paper, whether it is one page or twenty, should be nearly professional in quality. Congratulate each student, and congratulate yourself.
This hands on method of teaching students to write will stay with them throughout each of their lives. Each time they read a business letter or log onto the Internet, they will subconsciously mimic you in picking out mistakes.

Writing is a skill that takes practice. But that practice sometimes needs a little guidance. If you guide your students through one single writing assignment and stay with them from beginning to end, you will be giving them the gift of a lifetime. Not only will you improve the writing skills of a group of young students, but you will be contributing to the literary betterment of the world.

__________________________________

This source is copied from http://www.englishgrammar.org/ten-steps-teaching-perfect-writing/

Advice for Students: 10 Steps Toward Better Writing

Writing well is easily one of the most sought-after and useful skills in the business world. Ironically, it is one of the rarest and most undervalued skills among students, and few professors have the time, resources, or skills to teach writing skills effectively. What follows are a handful of tips and general principles to help you develop your writing skills, which will not only improve your grades (the most worthless indicator of academic progress) but will help develop your ability to think and explain the most difficult topics. Although directed at students, most of this advice applies equally well to any sort of writing; in the end, good writing is not limited to one context or another.
  1. Pace yourself. Far too many students start their papers the night before they are due and write straight through until their deadline. Most have even deceived themselves into thinking they write best this way. They don’t. Professors give out assignments at the beginning of the semester for a reason: so that you have ample time to plan, research, write, and revise a paper. Taking advantage of that time means that not only will you produce a better paper but you’ll do so with less stress and without losing a night of sleep (or partying) the evening of the due date. Block out time at the beginning of the semester — e.g. 2 weeks for research, 2 weeks for writing, 2 weeks to let your draft “sit”, and a few days to revise and proofread. During your writing time, set aside time to write a little bit each day (500 words is incredibly doable, usually in less than an hour — a short blog post is that long!) and “park downhill” when you’re done — that is, end your writing session at a place where you’ll be able to easily pick up the thread the next day.
  2. Plan, then write. For some reason, the idea of planning out a paper strikes fear deep into the hearts of most students — it’s as if they consider themselves modernist artists of the word, and any attempt to direct the course of their brilliance would sully the pure artistic expression that is their paper. This is, in a word, dumb. There is no successful writer who does not plan his work before he starts writing — and if he says he does, he’s lying. Granted, not every writer, or even most, bothers with a traditional formal outline with Roman numerals, capital letters, Arabic numerals, lowercase letters, lowercase Roman numerals, and so on. An outline can be a mindmap, a list of points to cover, a statement of purpose, a mental image of your finished paper — even, if you’re good, the first paragraph you write. See the introduction to this post? That’s an outline: it tells you what I’m going to talk about, how I’m going to talk about it, and what you can expect to find in the rest of the paper. It’s not very complete; my real outline for this post was scribbled on my bedside notebook and consisted of a headline and a list of the ten points I wanted to cover.

    Whatever form it takes, an effective outline accomplishes a number of things. It provides a ruler to measure your progress against as you’re writing. It acts as a reminder to make sure you cover your topic as fully as possible. It offers writing prompts when you get stuck. A good outline allows you to jump back and forth, attacking topics as your thinking or your research allows, rather than waiting to see what you write on page six before deciding what you should write about on page seven. Finally, having a plan at hand helps keep you focused on the goals you’ve set for the paper, leading to better writing than the “making it up as you go along” school of writing to which most students seem to subscribe.

  3. Start in the middle. One of the biggest problems facing writers of all kinds is figuring out how to start. Rather than staring at a blank screen until it’s burned into your retinas trying to think of something awe-inspiring and profound to open your paper with, skip the introduction and jump in at paragraph two. You can always come back and write another paragraph at the top when you’re done — but then again, you might find you don’t need to. As it turns out, the first paragraph or so are usually the weakest, as we use them to warm up to our topic rather than to do any useful work.
  4. Write crappy first drafts. Give up the fantasy of writing sterling prose in your first go-around. You aren’t Jack Kerouac (and even he wrote some crummy prose) and you aren’t writing the Great American Novel (and Kerouac beat you to it, anyway). Write secure in the knowledge that you can fix your mistakes later. Don’t let the need to look up a fact or to think through a point get in the way of your writerly flow — just put a string of x’es or note to yourself in curly brackets {like this} and move on. Ignore the rules of grammar and format — just write. You can fix your mistakes when you proofread. What you write doesn’t matter, what you rewrite is what matters.
  5. Don’t plagiarize. Plagiarism is much more than lifting papers off the Internet — it’s copying phrases from Wikipedia or another site without including a reference and enclosing the statement in quotes, it’s summarizing someone else’s argument or using their data without noting the source, it’s including anything in your paper that is not your own original thought and not including a pointer to where it comes from. Avoid ever using another person’s work in a way that even suggests it is your own.

    Be sparing in your use of other people’s work, even properly cited. A paper that is essentially a string of quotes and paraphrases with a minimum of your on words is not going to be a good paper, even though each quote and paraphrase is followed by a perfectly formed reference.

  6. Use directions wisely. Make sure your paper meets the requirements spelled out in the assignment. The number one question most students ask is “how long does it have to be?” The real answer, no matter what the instructions say, is that every paper needs to be exactly as long as it needs to be to make its point. However, almost every topic can be stretched to fill out a book, or condensed down to a one-page summary; by including a page-count, your professor is giving you a target not for the number of words but for the level of detail you should include.

    Contrary to popular opinion, writing shorter papers well is much harder than writing longer papers. If your professor asks you to write 8 – 10 pages, it’s not because she doesn’t think you can write more than ten pages on your topic; more likely, it’s because she doesn’t think you can write less than eight.

  7. Avoid Wikipedia. I admit, I am a big fan of Wikipedia. It is generally well-researched, authoritative, and solidly written. But I cringe when students cite Wikipedia in their papers, especially when they use the worst possible introductory strategy: “According to Wikipedia, [subject of paper] is [quote from Wikipedia].” Wikipedia — and any other general-purpose encyclopedia — is really not a suitable source for college-level work. It’s there as a place to look up facts quickly, to gain a cursory understanding of a topic, not to present detailed examinations of academic subjects. Wikipedia is where you should start your research, but the understanding that forms the core of a good academic paper (or nearly any other kind of paper) should be much deeper and richer than Wikipedia offers. But don’t take my word for it: Jimmy Wales, one of Wikipedia’s founders, has very openly discouraged students from using his creation as a source.
  8. Focus on communicating your purpose.Revise your paper at least once, focusing on how well each line directs your readers towards the understanding you’ve set out to instill in them. Every sentence should direct your reader towards your conclusion. Ask yourself, “Does this sentence add to my argument or just take up space? Does it follow from the sentence before, and lead into the following sentence? Is the topic of each paragraph clear? Does each sentence in the paragraph contribute to a deeper understanding of the paragraph’s topic?” Revising your paper is where the magic happens — when you’re done with your first draft, your understanding of your subject will be much greater than it was when you started writing; use that deeper knowledge to clarify and enrich your writing. Revision should take about the same time as writing — say 15 – 30 minutes a page.
  9. Proofread. Proofreading is a separate thing entirely from revision, and should be the last thing you do before declaring a paper “finished”. This is where you’ll want to pay attention to your grammar — make sure every sentence has a subject and a verb, and that they agree with each other. Fix up all the spelling errors, especially the ones that spell-checking misses (like “there” and “their”). Certainly run your word processor’s spell-checker, but that’s the beginning, not the end, of proofreading. One good trick is to proofread your paper backwards — look at the last word, then the second-to-last word, then the third-to-last word, and so on. This forces your brain to look at each word out of its original context, which means that your memory of what you wanted to write won’t get in the way of seeing what you actually did write.
  10. Conclude something. Don’t confuse a “conclusion” with a “summary”. The last paragraph or two should be the culmination of your argument, not a rehash of it. Explain the findings of your research, propose an explanation for the data presented, point out avenues for future research, or point out the significance of the facts you’ve laid out in your paper. The conclusion should be a strong resolution to the paper, not a weak recapitulation tacked on to pad out the page count.

The best way to improve your writing is to write, as much as you can. The tips above will help give you direction and point out areas where you are likely to find weaknesses that undermine your written work. What tricks have you come up with to make the process of writing more productive and less painful?

_____________________________________

This source is copied from http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/advice-for-students-10-steps-toward-better-writing.html

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