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Monday, November 1, 2010

WR7.2 Writing a descriptive text: dine out in Paris


WR7.2  Writing a descriptive text: dine out in Paris                     4-5 level   45 min.

GOAL. To enhance your writing skills practising with a creative text based on real life characters. In this working sheet we will see a 300-word written assignment.

Writing stage.
You are following the steps to prepare the task of writing a text about their evening out with particular emphasis on the meals and building their relationship.
WARMING UP
TASK 1. When you have to create a text you have to weigh the pros and cons of your composition. You can envisage different problems and possibilities about this task. Which do you consider it the most difficult to write? And the least?
a)    Imagine a possible setting
b)    decide to write a dialogue or a narrative tesxt
c)    with particular emphasis on the meals
d)    building their relationship.

TASK2. Underline the charming qualities you see in the authentic message.


Subject: Dinner.   6.6.45. Paris. France
To: Miss Ingrid Bergman

Part 1: This is a community effort. The community consists of Bob Capa and Irwing Shaw.
2: We were planning on sending you flowers with the note inviting you to dinner this evening but after consultation we discovered it was possible to pay for the flowers or the dinner, or dinner or the flowers, not both. We took a vote and dinner won by a close margin.
3: It was suggested that if you did not care for dinner, flowers might be sent. No decision has been reached on this so far.
4: Besides flowers we have lots of doubtful qualities.

5: If we write much more we will have no conversation left as our supply of charm is limited.
6: We will call you at 6:15
7: We do not sleep.

Signed:
Worried.


Bigger than life. That very day the pair met and a romance started that lasted in and  out a couple of years. You read in the previous page that Capa wanted a photograph of Ingrid Berman in the bath and after the successful meeting he couldn’t believe his luck.

TASK 3. When you have to make up a story you have to have in mind the content. In this case underline how can you picture your story.
I. Where will you set the dinner? 
     a) the Ritz hotel b) a cozy eatery by the Sena river  c) her favourite diner in down town
II. The length of time of the plot?
     a) having a drink before dinner  b)  detailing the conversation   c) going somewhere afterhours
III. Development of  the characters
     a) the role of both friends   b) Mr Shaw leaves early    c) others (waiter, flower seller, etc)
IV.  taking some pictures as climax of the plot
     a) when to make proposal    b)  acceptance or refusal    c)  glamourous details
V. The ending
     a) they depart after eating   b) ends with a long walk by the cobbled streets     c) unexpected

Language activation
TASK 4. As you might have guessed, part of the story takes place in an eatery, answer these:
activity one. How succesful would you consider these fragments from a learner’s text (1<3<5<7).

a1> the waiter appeared asking for dinner. Quickly, it was a free quality dinner; Capa read the menu and decided to take soup and Pekinese duck à l’orange. By the other way, the actress asked for a noodle salad.                      >> ................
 b1> “an ending sweet?”, asked a waiter’s voice. Pie, apple pie, replied Ingrid, “ there’s a delicious apple pie here, you can’t leave the hotel without taste it”. > ............


activity two. Underline the differences between the excerpts above and those below.

a2> it was an unusual quality dinner; Capa read the menu and decided to take soup and an oranged duck. By the other way, the girl asked for a noodle salad with salmon swimming in raisins cream. Delicious.
b2> “Pie, apple pie with vanilla whipped cream”, replied Ingrid, “ there’s an unforgettable apple pie here, you can’t leave the hotel without tasting it”.



activity three. Write your menu now:

............................................................................................................................................
............................................................................................................................................
............................................................................................................................................
............................................................................................................................................


Assessment. Some learners are more gifted than others to write a full text in 40 minutes!

TASK 5. Read the first text in annex 1. How succesful would you consider the composition in these three categories? (From 1 to 7 : 1 the least, 7 the most)

activity one. Overall assessment > ........  Language richness >......  Language accuracy > .......
activity two. Underline all the interesting language items in the text. Copy 8 here.
…………………………………. ………………………………….
…………………………………. ………………………………….
…………………………………. ………………………………….
…………………………………. ………………………………….

TASK 6. Read this excerpt  and answer the grammar activities below.
A happy smile lighted Capa’s face when he receives the note; so he spend the last money sending flowers to the girl, and a meeting time note.
Close to 6:15, they meet at the hotel hall, with great expectations, although masculine expectations. After the first encounter they decided going to dinner to the hotel’s Restaurant, but first, they would take a drink at the hotel’s lobby-bar.

activity one. Did you find problems in the underlined tenses?  ………………………………….

activity two.  Rewrite the same content with your own words, changing all the needed tenses, punctuation, links, etc.
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
PRODUCTION STAGE
TASK 7. Read this lines in the next paragraph of the text  and answer the activities below.


After a while, Ingrid Bergman begun a chat about the new film she had played called “Casablanca”, a lovely place where Capa spend some bites of his life. So, he followed the conversation, but although the film was placed in the same Casablanca and Paris, it was filmed on Hollywood, so Ingrid Bergman never visited the place.


activity one. Did you have problems in understanding what the learner tried to convey here?
Underline the words related to places, towns or locations in the passage.

activity two.  Rewrite the same content with your own words, changing all the needed nouns;  punctuation and relative pronouns; links, etc.
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
………………………………….………………………………….……………………..………
TASK 8. How can you include interesting twists in the plot?
Capa wanted a photograph of Ingrid Berman in the bath and after the successful meeting he couldn’t believe his luck. The writer creates a suspense along the text as how to ask for the photo.
 Read these lines in both columns  and  underline the improvements.

After some previous deliberations, the community decided to ask the girl for the photograph. But it would be better if only be asked by a man alone. So, Robert Capa and Ingrid Bergman, with no community went to the Restaurant. Then R. Capa was ready for the question, and beginning the first two words when the waiter appeared asking for the dinner. [...]
After a while, Ingrid Bergman begun a chat about the new film she had played called “Casablanca” [...]. That was the moment of make the question, when “an ending sweet?”, asked an untimely waiter’s voice. Pie, apple pie, replied the girl, “ there’s a delicious apple pie here, you can’t leave the hotel without taste it”.
After all, Capa was sure of asking the question.

After some previous deliberations, the community decided to ask the actress for the coveted photograph. But it would be better if it would be only asked by the ‘best photographer in the world’. So, Robert Capa and Ingrid Bergman, with no community company as he left for the toilettes, head for the restaurant. Taking the seat Capa was ready for the question, and as he had just uttered  the first two words the waiter appeared asking for the dinner. [...]
After a while, Ingrid Bergman begun a chat about the new film she had played recently called “Casablanca”, [...].  That was the right  moment to make the dreadful question, when “a savoury sweet to top the dinner, perhaps?”, asked an untimely waiter’s voice. [...] After all these events, Capa was absolutely decided to pose the question .


TASK 9. Write your own version for the task of writing a text about their evening out with particular emphasis on the meals and building their relationship, trying to include any cute twist in the plot.
Length aprox 300 words / set time  50-60 minutes

FOLLOW UP.
Read the annex with some other interesting compositions from other learners. If interested, google more about the characters.
Capa in http://www.photo-seminars.com/Fame/capa.htm

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