I need to rewrite the following two paragraphs for an assignment: In the absence of definitive studies regarding the optimum length of the school day, I can only state my personal opinion based...

I need to rewrite the following two paragraphs for an assignment:

In the absence of definitive studies regarding the optimum length of the school day, I can only state my personal opinion based upon observations based by me and upon teacher observations that have been conveyed to me. Considering the length of the present school day, it is my opinion that the day is excessive length-wise for most elementary pupils, certainly for almost all of the primary children.

To find my answer to the problem requires consideration of two ways in which the problem may be viewed. One way focuses upon the needs of the children, while the other focuses upon logistics, transportation, scheduling, and other limits imposed by the educational system. If it is necessary to prioritize these two ideas, it would seem reasonable to give the first consideration to the primary reason for the very existence of the system, i.e., to meet the educational needs of the children the system is trying to serve

Asked on by akbo

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thanatassa's profile pic

thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

The purpose of this assignment is twofold. First, it tests your reading comprehension; rewriting this in a simpler, more accessible vocabulary is a way of demonstrating that you understand bureaucratic prose. The second point of the assignment is that it allows you to develop skills in using active voice, eliminating redundancy, and using simple, direct language. 

Your first step is finding and eliminating meaningless padding and redundancy. Phrases such as "it is my opinion" can normally be eliminated. Unless you are specifically citing someone else's opinions, readers assume that everything you write is your opinion. Next, examine words which take actions and recast them into nouns, something linguists call "nominalizations." For example, the word "consideration" is a noun derived from the verb "consider." Revise nominalizations back into their verb forms to create more active and concise language or eliminate them entirely. For example, we could revise the long sentence:

Considering the length of the present school day, it is my opinion that the day is excessive length-wise for most elementary pupils ...

to:

The current elementary school day is too long. 

Another important strategy would be seeing if you could replace longer Latinate words or phrases with shorter words. 

Sources:
krusteez's profile pic

krusteez | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted on

Firstly, I think you need to simplify your sentences and be more focussed in your writing. Say what you mean!

From the start of this writing piece, you have already loaded too much information and made it very confusing.

Could you start with a question:

What is the ideal length of a typical school day?

Is the length of the current school day ideal for the elementary student?

From here, you could then state your thesis for this writing piece, i.e. that you think the current school day is too long for primary students.

In the second paragraph:

Again simplify the sentence.

To fix this problem, we must first consider 2 things.

Then go on to talk about the 2 points of consideration. Needs vs logistics.

Finally in the last part of the second paragraph state clearly what you are trying to say. Avoid words that are redundant:

If it is necessary to prioritize these two ideas, then we should ask ourselves an important question: What is the primary purpose of the education system?

While I get the point of this writing piece, I think that simpifying it and getting rid of redundant words is key to making it a much better writing piece.

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