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IGCSE Directed Writing: An exam question a week

We're going to look at the next option of writing you could be given: Discursive

This type of writing is where you create a balanced argument.

You are trying to show that you can work from a wider viewpoint and understand a range of different opinions, which can be a tricky task.

For example - A discursive piece of writing on unhealthy food would have to show the positive sides of unhealthy food. You could discuss that:

Although unhealthy food can be harmful, in moderation it can bring great comfort after a hard day's work. Everyone is allowed a treat now and again.

The key here is to keep things balanced. You're not writing to persuade so don't be biased. Make a quick four point plan of views on both sides of the argument. If you are a struggling try and create a persona that may represent the other side of the argument.

You need to ensure that you follow the five points of writing though. It is always good to make a plan and tick of the areas as you meet them in your writing.

Aim to develop 6 sections with balanced paragraphs:

This lovely little Prezi has a great explanation using boxing terms : http://prezi.com/snh4ewrh2cj9/boxing-to-argue/

You always get 2 options of questions (don't do both) and it is worth 25 writing marks in total addressing the following objectives:

Articulate what is thought, felt and imagined.
Order and present facts, ideas and opinions.
Understand and use a range of appropriate vocabulary
Use language and register appropriate to audience and context.
Make accurate and effective use of paragraphs, grammatical structures, sentences, punctuation and spelling.

You should spend an hour on this.

Here are some potential questions:

a) 'Hard work brings rewards' discuss this statement.


b) 'Students today don't work as hard as their parents did at school' argue for or against this statement.

Good Luck

Mr Milne
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