Persuasive texts for NAPLAN

As we are all aware, the writing task for NAPLAN in 2011 will be a persuasive text, not a narrative.

Here are some ideas about how to understand the features of a persuasive text and how to teach it. These postings will be updated with examples for each subject over the next few weeks.

What is a persuasive text?

It is writing that persuades or makes someone do something or think something. There are many types of writing that can be persuasive.

“Get over here now!”

This is an instruction or command. An instruction is very persuasive, especially if someone in authority is telling you what to do!

“Could you please lend me twenty dollars?”

This is a question and it can be persuasive, depending on who is doing the asking.

Persuasive types of writing also include complaint letters/emails, letters to the editor, debate notes, all kinds of advertising (direct mail, print ads, radio ad scripts, TV ad scripts)… and so many more.

However, for NAPLAN, it seems that students will be most likely write an EXPOSITION. They will have to take a point of view or develop an opinion about a topic and write a series of arguments in favour of their point of view.

The structure of an Exposition is:

THESIS

State the main point of view

ARGUMENTS

Present a series of statements to support the main point of view, using examples or evidence to support the statement. Each argument should be in a separate paragraph.

REINFORCEMENT

Finish with one final paragraph restating the point of view and summarising the main arguments.

If you have Literacy Works resources, you can look at Expositions in Book 2 and in Paragraphs and Text Types. The next posting will cover Language features of persuasive texts. If you have any specific questions, email me trish@literacyworks.com.au and I’ll send you a reply as well as posting answers on the blog.

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