英语写作水平怎么提高?

英语
能力评估

好的英语作文,不是一想写就能写成的,也无法通过阅读几篇秘诀就功力大增的,而是需要经过漫长的训练,逐渐地一步一步地提高。

但大多数学生,训练中没有方法,因而练得很痛苦,进展缓慢,甚至很多学生一提到作文就头痛不已,根本无法下笔,在混乱的思维中,随便拼凑些句子就敷衍了事。

好的训练方式,可以降低任务难度,使学生能够开始练习,坚持练习,并逐渐进步。

一、汉译英练习

我们在大脑中,一般都是使用母语来进行各种思维活动。作文的本质,是把大脑中的思维内容,用英语表达出来。因此,有意识地进行一些汉译英练习,有助于我们用英语来表达自己的能力,也就有助于提供英语写作的能力。

当然,汉译英,对大多数人来说,也是一件困难任务。

面对困难任务,我们最好不要奢望一躇而就,而是把任务分解成几个步骤,转换为几个更容易的小任务。

翻译一个汉语句子时,不要急着去产生最终结果,而是:

①先把汉语句子分解成几个简单句;

②再把汉语简单句翻译成英语简单句;

③最后把英语简单句组成一个复杂的句子。

例如,翻译句子:

这个游戏的独特之处在于它让孩子学会如何应对现实生活中的问题。(What)

先把句子拆分为简单句:

这个游戏很特别;

这个游戏让孩子学会一些东西;

孩子们能应对现实生活的问题。

再翻译这几个简单句:

This game is special.

This game let kids learn something.

The kids can deal with the problems in real life.

翻译并不难。

最后,我们把这几个简单英语句子适当地省略和组合,使用要求的连词,生成完整的长句:

What makes this game special is that it let kids learn how to deal with the problems in real life.

接着再看另一个翻译的实例:

申请材料需精心准备,这样你心仪的学校才会对你的能力有全面、准确的了解。(in order that)

先从句子中提取几个简单句:

申请材料需精心准备;

你心仪的学校能够了解你的能力;

学校的了解是全面的、准确的。

再把简单句翻译成英语的简单句:

The applications should be carefully prepared;

Your favorite school can have the knowledge of your abilities;

The knowledge is total and accurate.

最后适当地省略和组合,并使用要求的连词,形成一个完整的长句:

The applications should be carefully prepared in order that your favorite school can have a total and accurate knowledge of your abilities.

可以看到,分解成几个步骤以后,汉译英其实并不难。

平时的练习,不一定去找一些困难的句子进行练习,可以直接找出课文的中文译文,尝试去翻译成英文。

在翻译的过程中,同样可以先写出一些最简单的句子,再把句子组合成长句复句。翻译完成后,再和原文对比,去发现原文的精妙之处以及自己还存在哪些不足。

二、课文改写:

刚开始进行写作练习时,如果水平较低,可以先不急着直接写作文,可以先对学过的课文进行改写练习,等到写作能力提高到一定水平之后,再练习怎样写出作文。

1、摘要写作

对于任何一门语言,我们都可以使用数十上百种不同的方式,来表达相同的意思。语言的这种多样性,既是语言的魅力,也带来不少学习中的困难。能够用不同的语言、用自己产生的话来重述课文的内容,应该是语言学习者必须拥有的能力。

为了提高写作能力,我们可以在学完一篇课文以后,尝试对课文内容进行改写。

在初学阶段,学习者完成课文改写的任务可能会有困难,这时,我们可以使用各种提问作提示,降低写作的难度。

在新概念二的教材中,每篇课文后提供的“摘要写作(summary writing)”的作业,就是一种很好的改写课文的方法。

在摘要写作中,先提供几个问题,然后让学生来回答这些问题,最后把回答的内容汇总,就形成一篇短文。

例如,在第一课的摘要写作中,提供了8个问题:

1 Where did the writer go last week?

2 Did he enjoy the play or not?

3 Who was sitting behind him?

4 Were they talking loudly, or were they talking quietly?

5 Could the writer hear the actors or not?

6 Did he turn round or not?

7 What did he say?

8 Did the young man say, “The play is not interesting,” or did he say, “This is a private conversation!”?

学生尝试用一句短句来问答每一个提问:

1 The writer went to the theater last week.

2 He didn’t enjoy the play.

3 A young man and a young woman were sitting behind him.

4 They were talking loudly.

5 The writer couldn’t hear the actors.

6 He turned round.

7 He said, “I can’t hear a word!”

8 The young man said, “This is a private conversation!”

然后,把这些回答放在一起,就变成了一篇短文:

The writer went to the theater last week. He didn’t enjoy the play. A young man and a young woman were sitting behind him. They were talking loudly. The writer couldn’t hear the actors. He turned round. He said, “I can’t hear a word!” The young man said, “This is a private conversation!”

最后,数一数短文的字数,共53个单词。作业的要求是不要超过55个单词。

这个摘要写作中的提问和回答方式,和我曾介绍口语分组训练中,由主持人提出封闭性问题,让组员用简短的完整句子来问答,所使用的技巧是差不多的。所以,在口语的分组讨论中,也可以围绕着课文的内容来进行讨论,并且直接使用这些提问,作为讨论中的素材。

2、关键词造句

除了摘要写作之外,我们还可以在课文中选择5-10个关键词,写到纸上,然后利用关键词来造句,从而复述出课文的大概内容。

还是以这篇课文为例,我们可以选取单词:theater, play, enjoy, loudly, angry, turn round, hear, rudely, private。

再用这些关键词作提示或造句,写出一些简单的句子:

Last week I went to the theater.

I was watching a play.

I couldn’t enjoy the play.

A young man and a young woman sat behind me.

They talked loudly.

I became angry.

I turned round.

I said that I couldn’t hear a word.

The young man replied rudely that that was a private conversation.

然后,把这些句子用连接词连系起来,尽量用自己的话写出文章的大概意思。例:

Last week I went to the theater to watch a play. I couldn’t enjoy the play, for a young man and a young woman sitting behind me talked loudly. I became very angry and turned round to say that I couldn’t hear a word. The young man replied rudely that that was a private conversation. (55 words)

除了使用关键词作提示以外,也可以用中文译文作提示,来逐句翻译,或写出文章的大概内容。

3、改变时态

这篇课文讲述的是上周发生的事情,因此文章中的句子基本上都是过去时态。我们可以旋转时间轴到观看戏剧的前一天,然后假想自己就是作者,来展望即将到来的表演。

Tomorrow night I will go to the theater. A play which I expect to see for a very long time will be performed there. The play will be very interesting. The audience of course will be very gentle and polite. They will not talk loudly when watching the play. Everyone will enjoy the play. I can hardly wait to watch the play.

同样,我们可以旋转时间轴到正在看戏的当时,假设作者气冲冲地到洗手间休息了一会,然后忍不住给朋友发信息抱怨。在这些信息中,我们尝试尽量去使用现在的时态:

Tom, I feel very bad now. I am watching a play in the theater. The play is very interesting, but I don’t enjoy it. A young man and a young woman sitting behind me talk loudly. So I can not hear the actors. I turn round and angrily say, ‘I can’t hear a word!’ But the young man replies rudely, ‘This is a private conversation!’

尽管在发信息时,事情已经发生了,似乎需要用过去时态,但为了在抱怨中向朋友强调这件事情刚刚才发生(主要是我们想训练现在时),仍然可以用现在时态来讲述。

有些课文主要使用现在时态,我们就去构想用将来时态或过去时态来描述课文内容的场景。

有些课文主要使用将来时态,我们就去构想使用现在时态或过去时态的场景。

例如新概念二第13课:

The Greenwood Boys are a group of pop singers. At present, they are visiting all parts of the country. They will be arriving here tomorrow. They will be coming by train and most of the young people in the town will be meeting them at the station. Tomorrow evening they will be singing at the Workers' Club. The Greenwood Boys will be staying for five days. During this time, they will give five performances. As usual, the police will have a difficult time. They will be trying to keep order. It is always the same on these occasions.

可以假想多年以后,回忆当时看演唱会的经历:

The Greenwood Boys was a group of pop singers when I was a child. One year they had visited all parts of the country. They arrived at my hometown on a weedend. They came by train and most of the young people in the town met them at the station. They sang at the Workers' Club. The Greenwood Boys had been staying for five days. During that time, they had given five performances. The police had a difficult time for they tried to keep order. It was always the same on those occasions.

4、转换角色

我们还可以转换角色来复述课文的内容。

例如,我可以假设自己就是看戏的那个年轻人,在第二天向朋友讲述(或写信)昨天发生的事情:

Last night I went to the theatre with my girlfriend Mary to watch a play. I paid little attention to the play because I was very exciting to be with Mary. When we was talking, the man sitting in front of us turned back and said angrily that he couldn’t hear a word! I though that he want to hear what we were talking about. I told him that it was none of his business and this was a private conversation! But the man said that he couldn’t hear the actors and people should keep in silence in the theatre! How embarrassed we were! I apologized to him and Mary and I didn’t talk any more when watching the play.

这里列出的四种课文改写方式,都是以课文已有的内容为基础,这样,学生不会感到无内容可写。在改写的过程中,可以只对课文原来的句型作一些简单的转换或组合来完成,从而使改写的难度相对较低,学生能够顺利地完成,并且写出的文章中语法错误较少

当然,我们并不需要对每篇课文都作四种改写。老师可以根据课文的类型、难度和学生的水平,选择其中一种方式进行示范和练习就可以了。

随着学生写作水平的提高,可以适当地逐步地增加改写的难度。在新概念的教材上,后续的单元中也逐步展示了怎样来增加摘要写作的难度。

学生水平提高到足够程度以后,就可以给出类似考试中的作文题目,让学生去完成。

三、应试作文训练

我们在写作文时,常常想着一下子就在思维中把文章构思好,然后一气呵成地写出来。

想法越大,越急,思维越混乱,越是找不到合适的单词,写不出适当的句子。

平时训练中,可以按照一定的步骤,一步一步地在草稿纸上写出中间结果,最后才综合起来,产生最终结果。训练的步骤如下:

①根据题目提示,写出一句或几句最简单的句子,可以是原文照抄或直接翻译。

②根据因果关系,向前推原因,向后推结果,写出更多的句子。

③写出这些句子的对立句,再以对立句为提示,写了更多因果关系的句子。

④对这些简单句进行整合和取舍,用各种连词连接起来,形成一篇文章。

按照这些路线来思维,从简单的容易的内容出发,一步一步地慢慢走,自然不愁找不到内容,也不愁写不出文章。

在写作的练习阶段:尽量写出简单句;②尽量使用四种长词组的常用用法;③尽量使用常用连词连接。

这样做,能够保证:①写作过程中压力较小;②写出的句子语法正确

通过不断地练习,写作水平越来越高,能够轻松地寻找到写作内容以后,我们可以逐渐尝试在写作中使用一些更难的用法。

接下来,我们用写信和写议论文两个实例,来展示具体的写作过程。

1、如何写一封信

写信,是应试作文常常考查的内容。

我们以一篇高考作文真题为例,来看看该怎样写出一封信。真题如下:

假定你是李华,暑假想去一家外贸公司兼职,已写好申请书和个人简历(resume)。给外教Mr. Jenkins 写信,请他帮你修改所附材料的文字和格式(format)。
注意:1)词数100左右;2)可以适当增加细节,已使行文连贯。

读完真题以后,我们可以自问自答:依次给自己提一些问题,然后尝试使用最简单的句子来回答。

首先,回答问题:你现在在干什么?

I am writing a letter to Mr. Jenkins.

其次,回答问题:为什么要写信?原因是什么?

我们一般从过去或现状中,去寻找原因。在别人来信之后写回信,我们一般还会简略复述对方(过去)信中的某些内容。

Mr Jenkins is Li Hua’s English teacher. (直接翻译)

Li Hua has a plan that he will apply a part-time job in a foreign capital company in summer vacation. (直接翻译)

Li Hua wants to earn money for his college education. (因果)

Li Hua wants to practise his English. (因果)

Li Hua wants to have more social experience. (因果)

Li hua has already writen down the application and the personal resume. (直接翻译)

Li hua is afraid that there are some unproper words and formats in his application and resume. (因果)

再次,回答问题:写信的目的是什么?

我们一般是从现在或将来中,去寻找目的。

Li hua wants to get some helps from Mr. Jenkins. (直接翻译)

Mr. Jenkins can check Li hua's application and resume. (因果)

He can find some error in Li Hua’s application and resume, and then corrects them. (因果)

最后,我们尝试写出一些对比关系的句子,然后进一步思考因果关系。

Li hua don’t want Mr. Jenkins help him. (对比)

No. Li hua has already carefully checked the application and resume for many times. (因果)

Still, Li hua is puzzled with the usage of some words and the format. (因果)

Mr. Jenkins will not help Li Hua. (对比)

No. Mr. Jenkins is a very good person, and he is always ready for helping others. (因果)

Mr. Jenkins is not only Li Hua’s teacher, but also his good friend. (因果)

可以看到,通过写出对比关系的句子作提示,我们可以思考出更多内容。

有了这些简单句以后,我们就可以进一步选择和组合,写出这封信来:

Dear Mr Jenkins,

Summer vacation is near. In order to earn some money for my collge education as well as pratise my English, I want to apply a part-time job from a foreign capital company in summer vacation. I have already writen down my application and personal resume. But I am not sure about whether or not the words and format are proper even after I have carefully checked them for several times.

I know you are such a kind person that you are always ready for helping others. So I write this letter and send you my application and resume. Will you have any spare time to check them and correct any errors which may exist in them?

Looking forward to your reply!

Sincerely yours

Li Hua

(127 words)

在平时的练习中,当我们写好作文以后,最好数一数单词的总数,慢慢养成对文章长度的感觉。

2、如何写议论文

应试作文常常考查的另一种题型是写议论文。

写作议论文的基本思维路线是:

①某些过去的行为,产生现在的状况(存在的问题);

③采取措施的目的,是为了将来什么样的结果。

当然,每一个环节,不一定都有内容值得写出来,视具体的题目而定。

下面是一个四级考试的真题:

Directions: For this part, you are allowed 30 minutes to write a short easy on how to besthandle the relationship between doctors and patients. You should write at least 120 words but no more than 180 words.

首先,回答问题:我们为什么要写这篇文章?

We want to besthandle the relationship between doctors and patients. (照抄)

其次,回答问题:原因是什么?

我们要从过去的一些不恰当方式,或当前状况中存在的问题,去找原因。

The relationship between doctors and patients is not very good. (现状)

Quarrelling and even fighting between doctors and patients are heard from time to time. (现状)

Doctors felt that their workload was very high but patients did not respect them. (因果)

Patients felt that they were not always treated very well and the fee they paid for their sickness was too high. (因果)

再次,回答问题:我们接下来应采取什么样的措施?

More comunication between doctors and patients should be made. (措施)

So that they can understand each other better. (因果)

We should make a better medical system. (措施)

Doctors can do their best for patients not caring about their salary. (因果)

Patients can trust doctors and have enough money for their medical treatment. (因果)

最后,回答问题:我们追求的目的是什么?我们想要一个什么样的更美好的未来?

We want a more harmonious society. (因果)

We want that the relationship between doctors and patients will be better. (因果)

Doctors will work harder for the good of patients. (因果)

Patients will understand doctors’ situation. (因果)

在这个例子中,本身存在着大量的对立关系,所以没有进一步写出对立句。根据写出来的这些句子,已经足够让我们整合出一篇文章:

How to besthandle the relationship between doctors and patients

Recent years, the relationship between doctors and patients is not as good as usual. Quarrelling and even fighting between doctors and patients are heard from time to time. Some patients felt that they were not always treated very well and the fee they paid for their sickness was too high, on the contrary, doctors thought that their workload was very heavy but patients did not respect them.

To solve this problem, as far as I am concerned, more comunication between doctors and patients should be made so that they can understand each other better. Moreover, we should construct an efficient medical system to guarantee that all patients have enough money for their treatment and doctors can do their best in working not caring about their income and social status.

I believe that with the endeavor of all of us the relationship between doctors and patients will become better and better and our society will become more and more harmonious. (159 words)

在平时的写作训练中,可以严格按照这种利用因果关系和对立关系产生内容,先写出简单句再进行组合的步骤来进行写作,并保留整个写作过程的分析痕迹。

随着训练次数地增加,学生写作得越来越熟练,水平越来越高,整个过程慢慢内化成一种思维模式。真正进入到考试环节,可以不必再详细写下过程,而是直接在思维中充分构思,然后下笔,一气呵成写出作文。



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