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English and Grammar

English Review of Adaptations of Shakespeare

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Overview Shakespeare’s plays have been performed all over the world, translated into many other languages, and sets have been adapted beyond the traditional stage settings. In addition to movies made from the plays, there have been movies based on Shakespearean themes, operas and other musical works set to Shakespeare, as well as books, dance, and…

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English Review of Shakespeare

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Overview William Shakespeare (1564-1616) is known as the greatest writer in the English language and dramatist to the world.  He wrote over 35 plays, including histories, comedies, and tragedies.  His sonnets are a collection of 154, published in 1609.  They contain some of the most beautiful love poetry ever written. Histories Shakespeare wrote historical dramas…

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English Review of World Poetry

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Overview Forms of poetry exist all over the world, some predating writing. Poems are written in specific forms from the Far East through Persia and Arabia, using specific features of the culture and language. For example, the Epic of Gilgamesh, written in Sumeria in the third millennium BCE, uses common features of Sumerian language and…

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English Review of Types of Poetry

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Overview Poetry is based upon aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language, and exists across all cultures of the world.  Some say that poems, like music, came before literacy, and poetic tales made important facts easier to remember.  There are hundreds of subtypes of poetry, and some types include narrative poetry, epic poetry, lyric poetry, and…

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English Review of Types of Nonfiction

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Overview There are also a number of types (or genres) of nonfiction, including biography, essays, history, and reports.  Nonfiction differs from fiction in that nonfiction deals with accurate reporting of events, while fiction creates imaginary events.  Much of the writing that students do is nonfiction, whether in essays, reports, or papers. Biography and Autobiography A…

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English Review of Types of Fiction

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Overview There are many different types or genres of fiction.  Some of the most common types include adventure fiction, historical fiction, romance, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and horror.  Some people love to read only one type of fiction, such as adventure stories, mysteries, or science fiction, and libraries often shelve books in sections, so that…

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English Review of Paragraphs

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Overview Individual sentences express complete thoughts, and individual paragraphs support main ideas.  The development of paragraphs flows naturally to the development of arguments to support a central idea. Paragraph Length All the sentences in a paragraph support one main idea.   Suppose a journalist were writing an article about a city meeting.  She may choose to…

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English Review of Sentences

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Overview A sentence is a group of words that form a complete thought.  There are different types of sentences depending on what they contain. Complete Sentence Students are often asked to write answers to essay questions in complete sentences.  A complete sentence has a noun that acts as a subject, and a verb that is…

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English Review of Basic Writing Structures

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Overview Writers use basic structures to put their ideas in order and present them. Some of those basic structures include chronological, sequential, comparative, causal (or cause-and-effect), categorical, and evaluative. Chronological and Sequential The simplest way to order ideas is to present them as they happen in time, with a beginning, middle, and end. Most stories…

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English Review of Transitions

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Overview One of the ways to help the reader understand the points made or the direction the argument is going is by the use of transitions.  Transition words and phrases signal illustration, contrast, continuation, or conclusion. Illustration One of the ways to develop an idea is by illustrating examples.  They add more information about a…

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