Last month, we hosted Gareth Davies’ webinar, ‘Making the Impossible Possible: How to get your students writing’. During the webinar and on his previous blog post, we called for questions for Gareth that we could ask him post-webinar, to delve deeper into creative writing in the EFL classroom. Here’s the full transcript of this interview:
What is your opinion on teachers writing a sample text for students to get used to writing?
This is a good question, reading and writing go hand in hand and there is evidence to suggest that the more reading a student does the better their writing will become, so in general having as much exposure to different texts can only help students.
Having or not having a model is often the cited as the major difference between process and product writing. In process writing the students study a sample text and use it as a model and is a good approach for students who are preparing for an exam or who need to write formulaic emails or reports. However, sometimes I think this can impose restrictions on students. So if I am doing a creative writing exercise I might avoid giving students a model at the start of the activity, to allow their creative juices to flow.
Have you ever tried to channel the positive energy of these creative writing tasks and turn them into positive academic writing performance?
How could we use these ideas to writing for exams? I mean, IELTS, Cambridge exams?
Thanks for this question, let me try to give you an analogy. When someone trains to run a marathon, they don’t only run long distances.