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course. The 5 semester. Lesson 12. Theme: Writing styles. Objectives: The students will Identify the different tones found in correspondence (formal, neutral and informal)

The 3rd course. The 5th semester. Lesson 12.

Theme: Writing styles.

Objectives: The students will

  • Identify the different tones found in correspondence (formal, neutral and informal)
  • identify the reason for writing different correspondence
  • look at how the style of writing changes the tone

Visual aids: cards, handouts.

The type: combined

Procedure

I. Introduction.

Good morning students! Your home task was to write a letter to your favourite teacher. You may appreciate her or invite to somewhere, etc. Use parts and layout of b/l.

Is anybody ready? Thank you.

In this lesson you look at different types of styles of writing in terms of tone (being formal, neutral or informal). You may be surprised to find out that nowadays letters are less than formal than in the past, and that a friendly but business-like tone is more important.Business letters

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Look at the letter you wrote to your favourite teacher. Is there any difference in the style of writing?

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Here are six different types of correspondence. Read each one and decide why each one has been written. Choose from the list of reasons below.

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Which of the above is

• complaining about something • advertising
• giving a personal message • apologising
• providing information • asking someone to do something

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Read the six types of correspondence again and decide which of the above is
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• very informal (the two people know each other very well)
• very formal (it is written to an individual the writer does not know)
• neutral (the two people are work colleagues)
• informal (it is written as if the writer knows who they are writing to)
• formal (it is written to an individual the writer knows but not very well)
• very formal (the two people know each other well)

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Anita Keedwell, a training officer in Sri Lanka, wants to arrange a course on negotiations. She is writing to a lecturer at Trentville University who is not an English teacher but who has had a great deal of experience in training. She would like him to help her. Read the two correspondence below (A is an e-mail and B is a letter) and answer the following questions.

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  1. Which message is written to somebody the writer knows well, and has an informal tone?
  2. Which message is written to a stranger, and has a very formal tone?
  3. Which message is more personal?
  4. Which message uses standard phrases?
  5. Which message uses contractions? (I'm, we're, I've and not I am, we are, I have)
  6. Which message uses a lot of exclamation marks? (!!!!)
  7. Which message uses the first person singular more? (I)

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It is important to know when to write formally, neutrally or informally to somebody. If the tone is too formal, especially if the reader is somebody you have met, the writer can seem unfriendly.
Match the two parts of the sentences to make important statements about business writing. One has been done for you.

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Business letters

Mary McCartney works for an international publishing company (Blackbird Books) which have their headquarters in Liverpool. She works in the sales department of a branch in Delhi. Last week Mary McCartney went to Liverpool for a conference. During the conference she met the director, Paul Harrison, of her department for the first time. Now back in Delhi she has written him an e-mail.

Read the e-mail: what are her two reasons for writing?

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Read the e-mail again. Do you think the tone is a) formal, b) neutral or c) informal?

Do you think the tone is correct for this e-mail?

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Now look at a neutral version of the same e-mail:

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Look at the main differences between the first e-mail which is formal, and the second e-mail which is neutral. Fill in the chart below. The first one has been done for you as an example.

Formal Neutral
Dear Mr Harrison Dear Paul
It was a great pleasure
I trust you have fully recovered
I am writing to thank you
These will be very useful indeed
If you are ever in Delhi please do not hesitate to contact me.
Yours sincerely

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The following e-mail is to your boss. However, as you have worked with your boss for a number of years now it is far too formal. Rewrite the same e-mail but use a more neutral tone. Decide which information can be omitted. Your boss is called Sarah Wellington.

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Look at the letters you wrote for homework again.

The letter to your teacher needs a more formal tone as she is somebody you do not know. There are examples of formal correspondence in Activities 2, 4, 6 and 9. Look at these again and, if necessary, rewrite the letter.

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Remember that when writing to people you know it is better to use a neutral tone
rather then a formal tone even if they are more important than you.

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In this lesson you have:

Business letters identified the different tones found in correspondence (formal, neutral and informal)
Business letters identified the reason for writing different correspondence
Business letters looked at how the style of writing changes the tone

Home task: Writing a letter

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Which of the above is
• complaining about something C • advertising F
• giving a personal message D • apologising B
• providing information A • asking someone to do something E
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Read the six types of correspondence again and decide which of the above is
• very informal (the two people know each other very well) D
• very formal (it is written to an individual the writer does not know) C
• neutral (the two people are work colleagues) A
• informal (it is written as if the writer knows who they are writing to) F
• formal (it is written to an individual the writer knows but not very well) E
• very formal (the two people know each other well) B
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1 Which message is written to somebody the writer knows well, and has an informal tone? A
2 Which message is written to a stranger, and has a very formal tone? B
3 Which message is more personal? A
4 Which message uses standard phrases? B
6 Which message uses contractions? A
7 Which message does not have complete sentences? A
8 Which message uses a lot of exclamation marks? A
9 Which message uses less phrasal verbs? B
10 Which message uses the first person singular more? A
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She is thanking him a) for his help for her presentation, and b) for showing her around Liverpool.
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The tone is formal.
It is too formal: they have met and spent some time together. Although he is her boss she needs to write using a more neutral tone. This will make the e-mail friendlier.
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Formal Neutral
Dear Mr Harrison Dear Paul
It was a great pleasure It was very nice
I trust you have fully recovered I hope you're feeling better
I am writing to thank you Many thanks
These will be very useful indeed These will really be useful
If you are ever in Delhi please do not hesitate to contact me. If you come to Delhi please let me know
Yours sincerely Best wishes
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Business letters

1. Here are six different types of correspondence. Read each one and decide why each one has been written. Choose from the list of reasons below.

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Business letters

2. Which of the above is

• complaining about something • advertising
• giving a personal message • apologising
• providing information • asking someone to do something
3. Read the six types of correspondence again and decide which of the above is
• very informal (the two people know each other very well)
• very formal (it is written to an individual the writer does not know)
• neutral (the two people are work colleagues)
• informal (it is written as if the writer knows who they are writing to)
• formal (it is written to an individual the writer knows but not very well)
• very formal (the two people know each other well)
4. Anita Keedwell, a training officer in Sri Lanka, wants to arrange a course on negotiations. She is writing to a lecturer at Trentville University who is not an English teacher but who has had a great deal of experience in training. She would like him to help her. Read the two correspondence below (A is an e-mail and B is a letter) and answer the following questions.
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Business letters

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6.

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7.

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Formal Neutral
Dear Mr Harrison Dear Paul
It was a great pleasure
I trust you have fully recovered
I am writing to thank you
These will be very useful indeed
If you are ever in Delhi please do not hesitate to contact me.
Yours sincerely
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