This lesson will give you 5 steps to help you:
- Write the introduction
- Write the conclusion
- Describe changes
- Choose the right tense
- Organise your paragraphs
- Use linking words
- Add some Band 7 ‘magic’
Step 1: Key features
Write on the question paper. Circle
- what’s the same
- what’s different.
The key features will start to stand out. In this example you’ll quickly notice that there have been considerable changes but the park itself is still basically the same – this gives you a good overview.
Now start describing the changes. In this example, you can simply go through them one by one comparing the past with the present.
Step 2: Choose your tenses
Notice the different ways of expressing the past tense:
- When Grange Park opened in 1920, there was a large fountain in the centre.
- There used to be a bandstand with a stage for musicians.
- Around the edges of the park there were rose gardens with park benches.
Present Perfect Tense
- The glasshouse has gone and now there is a water feature. (Active)
- A cafe has been built nearby. (Passive)
- The seats have been taken away.
Notice the different ways of expressing the Present Tense:
- Now there is a water feature.
- An amphitheatre for concerts now takes up this space.
- Access to the park is still via the two original entrances.
Step 3: Add linking words
Linking words should be
- at the start of sentences (When, Similarly, In addition)
- in the middle of sentences (but, and, so)
- reference words (this, that, these, those, it)
Look at these examples:
When Grange Park opened in 1920, there was a large fountain in the centre, but this has been replaced with a rose garden and seats.
Step 4: Add some magic - watch the video!
Step 5: Write the introduction and overall
Compare the original introduction with my version – what do you notice?
‘The plans below a public park when it first opened in 1920 and the same park today.’
The plans show how a park has altered since it was built in 1920.
Using the word ‘how’ gives you an instant paraphrase in many different tasks
e.g. ‘The charts show daily expenditure’ –
the charts show how much people spend every day
Overall we can see that despite significant adaptations, the park retains the basic elements of flowers, water, seating and music with the addition of a cafe and a children’s play area.
Now look at the full version:
The plans show how a park has altered since it was built in 1920. Overall we can see that despite significant adaptations, the park retains the basic elements of flowers, water, seating and music with the addition of a cafe and a children’s play area.
When Grange Park opened in 1920, there was a large fountain dominating the centre. This has now been replaced with a sizeable rose garden and seats all around it. In addition, the glasshouse to the right of the Eldon Street entrance has gone and in its place there is a water feature.
To the left of where the fountain once stood, there used to be a bandstand with a stage for musicians. An amphitheatre for concerts and associated seating now takes up this space. Similarly, the pond for water plants has been removed and there is a children’s play area in the north east corner and a cafe has been built nearby. Around the edges of the park there were rose gardens with park benches for people to smell the flowers and listen to music. Only one of the smaller rose gardens remains on the north side of the park and the seats have been taken away.
Access to the park is still via the two original entrances, but there is now a third entrance near the water feature from an underground park.
Last 2 minutes
Spend a minute or two checking your work. Check:
- articles (a cafe, the glasshouse)
- plurals (flowers, seats)
- prepositions (in the north-east corner, to the left, on the north side)
- tenses (has been built, was built)
- 3rd person ‘s’ – (only one rose garden remains)
- 3rd forms – (has been taken away, has gone)
Use models like the one below to test yourself – make gapped versions like this so that you can be sure that you have understood the choices you have to make e.g. tenses and articles.