Creative Writing in the EFL Classroom/Teaching Ideas/Many Ways to Tell The Same Story

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Many Ways to Tell The Same Story[edit]

  • Aim: To practice writing using different genres
  • Rational: Texts are fluid and can be deconstructed. Students need to be made aware that texts can be recontextualized. In short, there are many ways to tell the same stuff.

Materials: pens, paper, brains

  • Steps
  1. Select a fable (can be any generic type of texts such as news articles or short stories)
  2. Ask students to shorten it, making it as short as a mini saga --- exactly 50 words.
  3. Correct their wording and grammar. Make sure that it is a mina saga!
  4. Read and discuss.
  5. Ask them to transform a mini saga to a Janpanese-style syllabic poem or haiku (5-7-5).
  6. Read and share.

Example:

The North Wind and the Sun

The North Wind and the Sun were disputing which was the stronger, when a traveler came along wrapped in a warm cloak. They agreed that the one who first succeeded in making the traveler take his cloak off should be considered stronger than the other. Then the North Wind blew as hard as he could, but the more he blew the more closely did the traveler fold his cloak around him; and at last the North Wind gave up the attempt. Then the Sun shined out warmly, and immediately the traveler took off his cloak. And so the North Wind was obliged to confess that the Sun was the stronger of the two. (113 words)


The North Wind and the Sun (Mini Saga: 50 words)

The North Wind and the Sun decided to compete to see who was stronger. Whichever could make a man take off his cloak would win. The wind blew and blew, but the man wrapped his cloak tighter around him. Then the sun shone, and the man took off his cloak.


Haikunized Text


        The Sun, not the wind (5)
          Makes the man take off his cloak (7)
           Kindness triumphs force (5)

Note: You may choose to dramatize this fable.