Information structuring

In this activity, students will be asked to find different ways to express a similar meaning. You may be surprised at just how many different ways you can find! The activity is based on an idea from Max Morenberg’s book Doing Grammar (3rd edition, Oxford University Press, 2002).

Goals

Lesson Plan

The teacher explains that today, we will look at information structuring. That means that we will look at different ways of expressing the same idea.

Slide 1 in the Activity page in the right hand menu displays a pair of sentences.

How many other ways can we think of to express the same meaning? Slide 2 provides three examples.

To create these variations, we can use different grammatical words (small words with mainly grammatical meanings or uses, like bywhatfor). We keep the same content words or closely related ones (e.g. latelatenessannoyedannoying). Students should try to identify for themselves the content words that have remained constant in each sentence, and the grammatical words that have changed. 

Now, ask students to think of as many additional variations as they can. Slide 3 provides a list of additional possibilities.

The students should consider the following questions:

Slide 4 presents a new example. Taking the two sentences below as their starting point, students should think of as many single sentences as possible that express a very similar meaning, without using completely new content words.

Tips:

How many variants did the whole class come up with? Did different people think of different variants? Again, discuss the different patterns that you found in terms of form and meaning:

The activity was open-ended, and you may well have found different variants. You may like to compare your list of variants against ours, which is also displayeda cross the last slides in the Activity page.

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Information structuring: Activity

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SKIP