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Revising is . . .
  • making decisions about how you want to improve your writing
  • looking at your writing from a different point of view
  • picking places where your writing could be clearer, more
    interesting, more informative and more convincing.


A.R.R.R. -  This method allows you to make four types of changes.

Adding What else does the reader need to know?
Rearranging Is the information in the most logical and most effective order?
Removing What extra details or unnecessary bits of information are in this piece
of writing?
Replacing What words or details could be replaced by clearer or stronger expressions?

R.A.G. - Read Around Group
~ General Rules for Read Around Groups ~
  1. 3-5 writers per group in varying ability
  2. Make sure there are no names on the pieces of writing.  
    Student work is to remain anonymous.  Photocopies work well.  
  3. In each group, everyone reads each paper once.  Nothing is written 
    on the papers. This is the first read.  It is written to get a general idea
    about what has been written.
  4. During the first read, on a separate piece of paper,
    each person puts them on a scale of 1-4.  
    (4 - outstanding, 3 - above average, 2 - acceptable, 1 - insufficient)
    Students also write comments about each piece for later discussion
    with the group.
  5. Students discuss why they assigned the score that they did.  
  6. Staying in the same group, students then revise the anonymous work
    during a second reading. Students can a) read each paper and mark
    suggestions on it or  b) read the piece as a group and mark the
    group's suggestions on each paper.

A.R.M.S. - Add, Remove, Move Around, Substitute

REVISING TIPS - Ask yourself these questions . . .

  • Can you read it outloud without stumbling?
  • Does every word and action count?  There should be a reason why a
    character acts or speaks in a certain way.  
  • Is the series of events logical?  Do they relate?
  • Is it clear what your goal or your main character's goal is throughout the piece of writing?
  • Are vivid/descriptive words used to describe characters and/or events?
  • Is your train of thought clear?  Are there any tangents?
  • Do you use a variety of verbs throughout the piece?  (Something instead of "SAID")
  • Is it wordy and redundant?  Are you using the same words and phrases
    over and over again?
  • Is there a catchy introduction?  Does the conclusion leave the reader thinking?
  • Do supporting details support only the topic sentence of that paragraph?
  • Are transitional devices used throughout?
  • Is there a strong hook, thesis and lead-in?
  • Is proper format followed throughout?
  • Are all sentences complete or are there sentence fragments?
  • Is a vivid mental picture created in the reader's mind?  
  • Have you completed sentence expansion where necessary?  (NO "HE RAN!")
  • Did you use a thesaurus?

For other suggestions visit LEO: Literacy Education Online



Maintained by A.E. Lipkewich  Westmount School  Revised February 17, 2001