DEVELOPING LANGUAGE ACCURACY IN ESL WRITING: Part 2 (PAWS)
Language accuracy had always been given much emphasis when I was teaching at SMK Kulim. PAWS or Paragraph Writing Scheme which was developed in 2015, reinforces DIVER FORMS. DIVER FORMS focuses on language accuracy at sentence level whereas PAWS deals with language accuracy at paragraph level. PAWS is necessary because learners must progress. They cannot be constructing sentences all the time. Learners have to move on to paragraph writing activities. Later on, they proceed with essay writing.
PAWS is carried out at least once a month. If the teacher plans to carry it out more than once a month, the teacher has to add other starting lines on his or her own.
Teacher gives the starting line to the learners. Teacher is encouraged to change the starting line based on the learners’ interest (what they prefer to write about). However, the grammar focus in the paragraph should be retained.
In 5-10 minutes, they write the paragraph. They can write about anything as long as it is related to the given starting line.
Length: 40-80 words. The length depends on learners’ proficiency and readiness.
Paragraph writing can be done individually, in pairs or small groups.
The paragraph is written on a piece of paper as a draft.
Possible ways to highlight language accuracy through PAWS: .... well to find out more, please click this: PAWS.
OTHER VIEWS ABOUT THE IMPLEMENTATION OF PAWS:
PAWS is also encouraged in weak classes. The aim is not to produce error-free paragraph but to reduce multiple-word errors. Teacher must highlight MWEs in PAWS and suggest ways to the weak learners how to reduce MWEs.
For potential A and B learners, teacher can ask learners to include 2-3 merits in each paragraph - they have to use sophisticated words or relevant idiomatic expressions. Of course, having merits in each paragraph is significant for a better essay mark.
The implementation of PAWS, just like DIVER FORMS, must involve all forms. PAWS should be implemented from Form 1 until Form 5. As you know, some learners need to be told again and again about grammar rules. Imagine, if SVA and basic tenses are reinforced year in year out, gradually, many of the potential A, B and C learners will have a better grasp of grammar, hence, errors can be reduced in their written work as well as spoken English.