I wanted to encourage my Writing students to include information from their own country to support their ideas in their essays. If done well, this kind of information can be very enthralling for anyone who reads their papers. (See • The Huge Advantage International Student Writers Have Over Their American Classmates )
The problem was that, when they tried to do this, the information was often too general, which made it sound kind of trite. So, I decided to write an exercise in which they would see how effective detailed information could be.
For the exercise, I wanted to juxtapose weak short paragraphs with few details to strong ones with more , and then have students identify each type. The challenge for me was to come up with stimulating content for these short paragraphs.
Fortunately, I had a treasure chest filled with interesting content that I could draw from. And as I’ll demonstrate below, this treasure chest has been my go-to place when writing materials for all the other skills too.