What’s That You Say?

What’s That You Say?

A touch of humor can make a long lesson seem shorter. Here’s a light-hearted writing activity to encourage your students to put pen to paper. The following five statements come from insurance claim forms explaining traffic accidents. You can find even more at http://www.wam.umd.edu/~stwright/right/Accident.html. First take turns reading the sentences out loud. Put students at ease by emphasizing how all writers—even skilled ones—occasionally make silly mistakes. Then ask students to write what they think the author really meant to say.

1. The pedestrian had no idea which direction to go, so I ran over him.

2. I had been driving my car for 40 years when I fell asleep at the wheel and had the accident.

3. Coming home I drove into the wrong house and collided with a tree I don’t have.

4. I was on my way to the doctor with rear-end trouble when my universal joint gave way, causing me to have an accident.

5. The guy was all over the road. I had to swerve a number of times before I hit him.

Adapted from a 2006 COABE workshop presentation by Dominique Chlup, Ph.D., of the Texas Center for Adult Learning and Literacy.

Courtesy of Proliteracy America

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