Critical Essay Writing Skills Things to think about in the exam…
First things first… • READ the questions carefully and select the question most suited to what you have studies. • Use a pen or highlighter to underline the KEY words in the question that you will have to relate back to in your answer. • Spend a COUPLE of minutes planning.
Introduction • Just think….. • TART! • Title, author, relate to question, theme!! • You can re work the wording of the question to ensure your answer is relevant from the start.
Structuring out information • Think- • PEAR! • Point, evidence, analysis, relate to Q
POINT • Eg. • Duffy highlights the potential that love has in it’s early stages of a relationship when a couple are blissfully in love.
Evidence • “It is a moon wrapped in brown paper” • “it promises light” • “careful undressing of love”
Analysis (very important) • It is clever that Duffy should choose to compare the love-representing onion to the ‘moon’ as it is recognised as a symbol of romance. The expression ‘it promises light’ is important as it suggests the hope new love brings. The beginning is a precious time when two people fall in love and envisage a future together. Also, the word ‘careful’- used to depict an onion being peeled out of its outer layer – mirrors the care lovers take regarding their partners feelings in the early stages of a relationship.
RELATE TO QUESTION!! (SO important) • This is convincing as most relationships do start in a positive way. Commonly known as the ‘honeymoon’ period, new couples often become enamoured with one another when they first fall in love. However not all relationships last, suggesting this blissful period is not everlasting.
Additional points to consider • Punctuate and paragraph. • Use inverted commas when quoting from the poem. • Give the poet’s name capital letters- Carol Ann Duffy. • Constantly refer to the essay question after each point you make. • There is always room for more analysis. The depth of analysis you offer will determine the grade you receive. • Time management- get used to writing fast. Revise your quotes and analysis extensively so you can focus on tailoring your answer to the question in the exam.