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Aug 04
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Aug 03

Who - Part II

An extension of Who Part I that gets into learning how to write to a target audience. 

Now that you have your information and your basic paragraph from Who Part I, practice writing to an audience. Push yourself to adjust your writing to a certain audience and learn how to analyze your target readers.

1. Rewrite your paragraph from Part I as if you were going to read it to a group of kids under the age of 7. Think about language, appropriate information, attention spans, etc.


2. Rewrite your paragraph as if you were going to read it to a group of knowledgeable adults over the age of 70 that know a lot about your town. What will you change? What information will you include?


3. Rewrite your paragraph again, but this time, try to write it so that a broad audience that doesn't live in, or know anything about, your hometown would understand it. Again, think about what needs to change to create understanding, but to also appeal to and teach all ages.

Comment on the works of your peers. Tell them how well they did adjusting their voice.


Read your paragraphs to each group. Get feedback about how well you communicated your message to each particular audience.

[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Nate Ertle]

Aug 01
Grace's picture


Presenting can be scary. Whether you are giving a speech, doing stand-up, or reading a creative writing piece you wrote, it can be nerve-wracking. Almost everyone gets stage fright, even actors. But, knowing some helpful tips can get you through your presentation, and help you deliver it with a greater sense of confidence. 

Jul 31


Learn how to engage an audience by using humor. 

This is an activity you can do with your class, as it centers around positive lessons you have learned from your school community in an unusual way by using humor. Use humor to tell a story, and learn how to really engage an audience.

Humor can be a creative, and, well, hilarious way to get your opinion across about a certain topic. You can engage an audience about any topic — even one that was originally bland — and grab their attention throughout.

First, think about a funny or frustrating experience you had with one of these three things: a homework assignment, a group project, or a field trip.

Second, once you have your memory, think about how you could tell this story in a funny way, but ultimately show that you learned something from this community experience. Write a detailed outline of this story with a few jokes and messages you want to remember.

Third, with your class, everyone should get up and do their comedy routine. People shouldn’t be reading a prepared speech or paper. Just let the jokes flow naturally.

[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Erik Short] 


Jul 26

Language and Length

Adjust a local newspaper article to make it more engaging for someone your age. 

Knowing the audience you are writing to also means understanding their attention span, and interest level. Practice these skills by editing a piece of local news.

Sometimes, you find a piece of writing that you think could be improved upon -- by you. Try it and see what the reaction is.


1. Find a newspaper article in your local paper that you think would appeal to a broad audience, OR to an older audience.


2. Using the same information in the article, adjust the LANGUAGE and the LENGTH of the article so it will appeal to an audience of your age. Write an article people your age would be interested to read. Make sure you keep the content of the article.

3. Give it to a friend who is your age and ask their opinion of the article. Was it engaging? Interesting? Clear?

4. Show the friend the original article and ask which one they preferred.

5. Use their feedback to evaluate your skills in writing to a target audience.

AND, as always, comment on the works of your peers.

[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Derek Pham]


Jul 26

Who - Part I

Think about target audiences when you explain the history of your town in just a paragraph. 

Write about the history of your town in just one paragraph. Use that paragraph to practice adjusting your writing to a target audience. In Part I, do your research; in Part II adjust your writing.

Writers are often thinking about WHO is reading their content — who their intended audience is. How old are their readers? How informed are their readers? How engaged are their readers? Writers often change their style to reach a certain, or a broad, audience.  

1. Do some research on your town. How was it settled? When was it settled? Who were the founders? What was the main job/industry/export of your town at its founding? Gather what you think you need to know to understand the history of your town.


2. In a paragraph, explain the who, what, where, why, and how of the founding of your town. Write the paragraph as if you were the only reader of the paragraph.

3. Move on to Part II.

[Photo Credit: YWP Photo Library, photo by Kevin Huang]