Designing L2 Writing Tasks


Once students are ready to write, they need clear instructions and resources to complete the next steps in the process: writing drafts, revising, self-editing, expanding. Students should be allowed to use notes they generated from the pre-writing tasks. Decide also whether they may use a dictionary or spell-checker, and what you expect them to do for this activity. Ensure that your pedagogical objectives align with the actual activity you assign your students.


Ways to keep students engaged throughout the writing process.

Duration: 01:41

Example During Writing Task

You will write a short story that tells your reader about your latest winter vacation. It will describe in some detail - the more interesting the better - what you did, where, and how it went. After you are finished composing your short story, make sure to re-read your story and run through the self-editing checklist! In the meantime, follow these steps to begin your masterpiece!

  • Write a paragraph that explains a) where the story takes place, b) who was there, and c) what was the funny event that happened.
  • Write 2-3 paragraphs a) about what happened before, during and after this event or b) add descriptions of the main characters that explain why this event was funny.
  • Provide details that make the story interesting for your reader (make sure they want to read it!).
  • Start with a hook, have a clear beginning, middle and end (a complete story arc) in your narrative.
  • Add phrases to make the story flow smoothly (cohesion markers, pronouns, conjunctions)
  • Eliminate "fluff" (unnecessary or redundant details)
  • Review your story for fluidity, vocabulary, grammar, style and mechanics.

These checklists can be adapted for any level and language.