English & EAL

The root to the best text responses

Lyn Nguyen

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Go ahead and tilt your mobile the right way (portrait). The kool kids don't use landscape...

There is a common misconception about text response; the more essays you write, the better you become. However, this may not be the case, for often it is the lack of understanding of a text which may be at the core of the issue. Yes, this is the problem faced, of course, by those who don’t even read or expose themselves to the set text. At the same time, it can very well be the reason why you’re essays are idle in the same grade range. You will, without a doubt, reach a point where you are receiving the same feedback or same scores for your text response. And for those who are already in the top box… knowing more will only add more weight to the effectiveness of your writing, as well as expanding your knowledge to boundaries unexplored by others. So how do we fix this?

It sounds tricky, but it comes with knowing the text ‘inside out.’ Not only will you be way ahead of other students who barely even touch the text, but will also ready yourself for absolutely any topic that the exam will throw at you. Constantly exposing yourself to the text, re reading or re watching, having a go at critical essays by academics analyzing your text, or even merely discussing it with a friend when you get a chance. There are multiple ways to about it, and anyway is better than none at all. For every extra little bit of effort you put into learning and connecting your text, is effort that many other students have not even considered.You have to constantly water your knowledge of the text- engaging yourself with it in order to improve the quality of your essays. So how can you keep growing your foundations?

Text Response

Re-watch/re-read your textsDiscuss your texts with your friends or teachersFind and read critical literature (essays by academics/scholars on your text)

You may surprise yourself with how interesting the ideas explored in texts are, and everyone knows that the work will become easier with interest! Just think about all the benefits:

Reminding yourself of key ideasPutting you ahead of other studentsGiving you more to write withEnsuring you are ready with any topic you may come acrossHelping you memorise key quotes or scenesMaking the text more interesting

So give it a go, especially with the upcoming holidays handy, ask yourself- do you have any excuse not to try?

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