What are the key features of writing to describe?. Present tense2nd/3rd personSnapshotsFive sensesAdjectivesVerbsAdverbsShowing not telling. Variety of sentence lengthsUse of imagery (personification/similes/metaphors)Develop an air of mystery Structure into logical sequence. Activity One - planning.
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GCSE English Revision: the descriptive writing task!
2. What are the key features of writing to describe? Present tense
Showing not telling
Variety of sentence lengths
Use of imagery (personification/similes/metaphors)
Develop an air of mystery
Structure into logical sequence
3. Activity One - planning
4. Planning Create a paragraph plan before you write; every paragraph should be a different snapshot view of the bigger picture.
Here’s an example….
5. Sample task: describe a doctor’s waiting room PLAN
Busy reception desk – phones, forms
A worried mother with child on lap
Toddlers fighting over toys
Notice board – signs, warnings, appeals
Rising tension – how people react to waiting
View outside window
6. Your turn – describe a school yard during lunchtime PLAN
7. Activity Two – observing closely
8. What is unimpressive about this description?
A girl sits on her mother’s lap. She has blue eyes and brown hair.
That’s right – it isn’t interesting. Thousands of girls have blue eyes and brown hair! Try to point out something special, some individual feature, when you describe people….
9. Why is this better? A schoolgirl lounges on her mother’s lap. Her eyes are red-rimmed as if she has been rubbing them and her long hair is tangled.
10. Improve this description… A toddler plays with some building blocks. He is wearing a green shirt and blue trousers.
Compare your rewritten sentence with your partner’s and decide on the best one to share with the rest of the group.
11. Activity Three – using the senses
12. Using the five senses Why is it important to use the five senses in your description?
Imagine you are sitting in the waiting room. Note down ideas in response to the prompts on the next slide.
(Your aim is to create a tense and unhappy atmosphere.)
13. Sensory prompts You read a poster – what does it say?
You hear a sound from outside – what is it?
A sound inside catches your attention – what is it?
You watch a pensioner reading a newspaper. What do you notice about him?
What do you begin to imagine about the life of a worried looking teenage boy?
How does your seat feel?
What can you smell?
14. To sum up so far… Break the view into snapshot scenes by planning
Describe specific details – not the obvious and everyday
Use the senses to create atmosphere