We then worked in groups to "peer edit" the essays. In groups of four, each student had a "job" to do in reviewing the other group members' essays. One student checked for spelling, one for grammar, and one for vocabulary. The vocabulary checker read the essay to highlight areas where the author could use more appropriate or exciting vocabulary. I gave the students the example of the overuse of the word "good." For example, "My mother is a really good person. She cooks good food and she is a good friend to many people." The students talked about different words that could be used besides "good" in the sentences — such as kind, wonderful, great, delicious, excellent, helpful, etc. The peer editors made their marks and suggestions, but the author did not have to accept them if they didn't agree. Next, the students did a re-write to create their second draft.
Writing is one of the things I used to hate the most. I hate it when teachers would ask us to pass an essay. I hate it when I have to compete in writing contests because teachers asked me to. Nevertheless, winning in those contests boosted my self confidence. I thought I hate writing but I am good at it so I started to like it a bit. Things changed when I had two writing classes in college. I realized I was not good in writing.
The winning essay: How to solve youth unemployment
Youth unemployment has deep roots. Combating it requires us to challenge conventional wisdom: by removing, where possible, disincentives to hire and to work; by reforming schools and universities; by ramping up apprenticeships and mentoring. Teachers and parents, business leaders and policy makers all have a crucial part to play. It will not be easy; the march of progress - “creative destruction”, in Schumpeter’s phrase - is not without its casualties. Yet creativity is what we youngsters do best. Our fresh, radical and positive minds must seize the initiative, continually re-imagining the future amid the whirlwind of the present. We need leaders. There’s a job for the young, right away.