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Organise the students into groups of 3 or 4. Hand out the scenarios (RTF 10KB) and ask the students to think of the complaints that may ensue.
Now ask the students if they know what a letter of complaint entails. Emphasise the following:
Explain to the students they are going to read a letter of complaint to get an idea of the layout, content and register.
Hand out the model_letter (RTF 388KB) and explain that the letter concerns travel plans again.
Students read the letter or the teacher reads it with them.
Students must annotate the letter, making note of the various components (see learning task 1, Task D, ) of the letter of complaint. They also need to identify one example of emotive language. Explain to the students that emotive language is the use of strong words or phrases whose aim is to provoke a particular emotional response from the person receiving the letter. Often, the purpose of using emotive words or phrases is to elicit empathy and to cause action to be taken. For example:
In addition to the similar layout and tone to a letter of request, the letter of complaint has the following features:
Go to the BrainPop_Quiz (RTF 11KB) Web site. Make sure the top right box has 'Business Letter'. Click on 'Play Quiz' and get students to answer the questions on a business letter.
(The answers to the quiz are: c; b; a; c; a; b; a; c; b; c)
If you have access to the web in class, get students to watch the movie. Click on 'Play Movie'. Here are some questions you could ask once the movie has been viewed:
1. How does Tim describe a business letter?
Go back to the homepage of BrainPop. Click on the 'Activity Page' and get students to do the sequencing exercise. Here are the answers for the sequencing exercise:
Note: The complimentary closing on the letter in the movie is: 'Sincerely yours'. Be sure to point out that in NZ it is more common to write: 'Yours sincerely'.
This complaint (RTF 5KB) has some errors in layout, as well as some errors in tone. The students must read the letter and correct the mistakes.
Task D: Proofreading
Explain to the students how important it is to proofread any writing that will be read by someone else.
For customisable student check-lists, see these Assessment Resource Bank resources:
Published on: 07 Apr 2009