Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    DreamingAnn is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    25
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Well, I'm planing to take the TOEFL test, and this is my very FIRST writing practice. Please help me with my grammar, usage, and sentences etc. For I know there definitately be a lot of mistakes, and I really want to make a progress.
    Thanks a lot!!!
    ---------------------------------------------
    Topic:
    Learning about the past has no value for those of us living in the present. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

    Not everyone enjoy the process of learning about the past, especially those painful memories. Some people might even say that what's gone has gone, there is no use to regret or linger in those useless past. However, in my point of view, I strongly disagreed with the idea that learning about the history has no value for today. I will try to demonstrate my point in the following paragraphs.

    It is said that those who forget history will make the same mistake again. And I do agree with this opinion totally. It reminded me of one of my favorite movies, eternal sunshine of spotless mind. It was a science fiction love story about a couple who disappointed with each other chooses to erase their memories of each other, yet this cannot help them to stop to fall in love again. In this case we can see that things did not get a little bit of better by forgot, even though it was not getting worse. It was quite clear that forgetting the past has never been a good way to cope with problems. Furthermore, this would probably lead one to lose his/her immunity against those disasters again. By forgetting the past, people would easily fall into the same old trap once more. Without any single tiny memory of the old mistake, how can we expect one person to do it right this time?

    No matter to individuals or a nation, the significance of history can never be ignored. Who want Nazi conquer the world again? Who is willing to see those catastrophes in human history reappear? And those appalling massacres, hideous wars, horrified memories recur? If we do not value our past and easily let them go, Iím almost certain this sort of things would happen again! Owing to learning from the past, we human beings have been surviving from one after another difficulties and adversities during millions and thousands of years.

    Certainly, it does not mean that history is a miraculous cure, and the remembrance of the past will definitely lead our lives happily ever after. With the development of the science and technology, world has been changing rapidly. There are new adventures without any references to use appearing everyday. It is true that history can not lead our ways, yet it is quite sure that the neglect of the old experiences could probably result in a new calamity.

    To sum it up, the importance of the past should never be forgotten. Itís a beacon, itís a mirror, and itís something that we could consult in need.

  2. #2
    Jay Louise's Avatar
    Jay Louise is offline Junior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Quote Originally Posted by DreamingAnn View Post
    Well, I'm planing to take the TOEFL test, and this is my very FIRST writing practice. Please help me with my grammar, usage, and sentences etc. For I know there definitately be a lot of mistakes, and I really want to make a progress.
    Thanks a lot!!!
    ---------------------------------------------
    Topic:
    Learning about the past has no value for those of us living in the present. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

    Not everyone enjoys the process of learning about the past, especially those painful memories.(note 1) Some people might even say that what's gone has gone, there is no use to regret or linger in those useless past (note 2). However, in my point of view, I strongly disagreed with the idea that learning about the history has no value for today. I will try to demonstrate my point in the following paragraphs.

    It is said that those who forget history will make the same mistake again. And I do agree with this opinion totally (note 3). It reminded me of one of my favorite movies, eternal sunshine of spotless mind (note 4). It was a science fiction love story about a couple who, disappointed with each other, chooses to erase their memories of each other, yet this cannot help them to stop to fall avoid falling in love again. In this case we can see that things did not get a little bit of anybetter by forgot forgetting, even though it was not getting worse. It was quite clear that forgetting the past has never been a good way to cope with problems. Furthermore, this would probably lead one to lose his/her immunity against those disasters again. By forgetting the past, people would easily fall into the same old trap once more. Without any single tiny memory of the old mistake, how can we expect one person anyone to do it right this the next time?

    No matter to (note 5) individuals or a nation, the significance of history can never be ignored. Who wants Nazis to conquer the world again? Who is willing to see those catastrophes in human history reappear? And those appalling massacres, hideous wars, horrified memories recur? If we do not value our past and easily let them go, Iím almost certain this these sorts of things would happen again! Owing to learning from the past, we human beings have been surviving from one after another difficulties and adversities during millions and thousands of years.

    Certainly, it does not mean that history is a miraculous cure, and the remembrance of the past will definitely lead our lives happily ever after. With the development of the science and technology, the world has been changing rapidly. There are new adventures without any references to use appearing everyday. It is true that history can not lead our ways, yet it is quite sure that the neglect of the old experiences could probably result in a new calamity.

    To sum it up, the importance of the past should never be forgotten. Itís a beacon, itís a mirror, and itís something that we could consult in need.
    about the past, especially those painful memories.(note1)
    I'm not clear on what you are trying to say in the last phrase. Maybe, "especially when it involves painful memories"?

    no use to regret or linger in those useless past (note 2)
    no point in regretting or lingering in the useless past

    And I do agree with this opinion totally (note 3)
    Ouch. Using "totally" to mean "completely" is very slang-y and will set people's teeth on edge. Not something you want to do for a TOEFL test. Stick with "I agree with this opinion" or "I completely agree with this position".

    eternal sunshine of spotless mind (note 4)
    Go over the chapter in your grammar text concerning formats for titles of movies and books.

    No matter to (note 5)
    This isn't an appropriate phrase, even though I know what you mean to say. For some reason, my brain is unable to offer suggestions.

  3. #3
    DreamingAnn is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    25
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Louise View Post
    about the past, especially those painful memories.(note1)
    I'm not clear on what you are trying to say in the last phrase. Maybe, "especially when it involves painful memories"?

    no use to regret or linger in those useless past (note 2)
    no point in regretting or lingering in the useless past

    And I do agree with this opinion totally (note 3)
    Ouch. Using "totally" to mean "completely" is very slang-y and will set people's teeth on edge. Not something you want to do for a TOEFL test. Stick with "I agree with this opinion" or "I completely agree with this position".

    eternal sunshine of spotless mind (note 4)
    Go over the chapter in your grammar text concerning formats for titles of movies and books.

    No matter to (note 5)
    This isn't an appropriate phrase, even though I know what you mean to say. For some reason, my brain is unable to offer suggestions.

    Thank you very much!!!!

    Note 1: Well yes, what I mean was "especially when it involves painful memories", but now when I review it again, I find it was not a good point. Maybe I'll change it to
    "Not everyone enjoys the process of learning about the past, especially when we have to face those tedious events and numbers."
    What about this one? Is it more clear and convincing?

    Note 3: Thank you for your advice! Because you know, some of the time it's really difficult for us second language learners to tell which is more proper.

    Note 4: Should I capitalize the title?

    Note 5: Beats me. Then what should I say...?

  4. #4
    Jay Louise's Avatar
    Jay Louise is offline Junior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Quote Originally Posted by DreamingAnn View Post
    Thank you very much!!!!

    Note 1: Well yes, what I mean was "especially when it involves painful memories", but now when I review it again, I find it was not a good point. Maybe I'll change it to
    "Not everyone enjoys the process of learning about the past, especially when we have to face those tedious events and numbers."
    What about this one? Is it more clear and convincing?

    Note 3: Thank you for your advice! Because you know, some of the time it's really difficult for us second language learners to tell which is more proper.

    Note 4: Should I capitalize the title?

    Note 5: Beats me. Then what should I say...?
    Not sure I'm the best person to give advice on writing style. Keep in mind that this is all just my personal opinion.

    (Note 1): Not everyone enjoys the process of learning about the past, especially when we have to face those tedious events and numbers

    Think about what you really want to say in your opening sentence. Learning about the past is {what}, {why}. As it stands now you are saying Learning about the past is {not an enjoyable process}, {because we have to face tedious events and statistics}. How can you write this without using "not"? Learning about the past IS difficult? painful? often avoided?

    Tedious is not what you want here. That is saying the events are tiresome and boring. You want to say the past events are painful? embarrassing? ugly? overwhelming?

    (note 3): I hope I don't confuse any students out there by saying not to use "totally" to mean "completely" since totally actually does mean completely. It is just that it has been so overused as slang that it is difficult to hear the word, even when it is used appropriately, and not cringe.

    (Note 4): At the very least it should be capitalized Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I don't know anything about TOEFL guidelines or style requirements or how you are submitting your writing so I can't advise you on using quotes or underlining.

    (note 5): No matter to individuals or a nation, the significance of history can never be ignored.

    Let me think out loud a little bit here.~
    The significance of history can never be ignored...
    whether one is..? neither by..? regardless of..? no matter if..?
    *sigh*
    Your statement is really good, I can't come up with a good way to restate the "no matter to" though.

  5. #5
    DreamingAnn is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    25
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Louise View Post
    Not sure I'm the best person to give advice on writing style. Keep in mind that this is all just my personal opinion.

    (Note 1): Not everyone enjoys the process of learning about the past, especially when we have to face those tedious events and numbers

    Think about what you really want to say in your opening sentence. Learning about the past is {what}, {why}. As it stands now you are saying Learning about the past is {not an enjoyable process}, {because we have to face tedious events and statistics}. How can you write this without using "not"? Learning about the past IS difficult? painful? often avoided?

    Tedious is not what you want here. That is saying the events are tiresome and boring. You want to say the past events are painful? embarrassing? ugly? overwhelming?

    (note 3): I hope I don't confuse any students out there by saying not to use "totally" to mean "completely" since totally actually does mean completely. It is just that it has been so overused as slang that it is difficult to hear the word, even when it is used appropriately, and not cringe.

    (Note 4): At the very least it should be capitalized Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I don't know anything about TOEFL guidelines or style requirements or how you are submitting your writing so I can't advise you on using quotes or underlining.

    (note 5): No matter to individuals or a nation, the significance of history can never be ignored.

    Let me think out loud a little bit here.~
    The significance of history can never be ignored...
    whether one is..? neither by..? regardless of..? no matter if..?
    *sigh*
    Your statement is really good, I can't come up with a good way to restate the "no matter to" though.
    note 1:
    Actually, I know tedious means boring. So what I was doing there was not just trying to change an expresion but to change my point. But I think you are right, opening sentence is essential, and if you change it you'll find it incoherent with the following sentences. So maybe I should keep that "especially when it involves painful memories", though I'm not quite satisfied with this perspective right now.

    note 3:
    I think I get it. It's quite like all the music students hate to hear FŁr Elise, though there's nothing wrong with Beethoveen's compsition. So when we heard it from HP7 in the cinema, we all cringed.

    note 4:
    It seems that you can't change the fonts in TOEFL, all you can do is just typing them in. So I think capitalize them is the best way.

    note 5:
    Well, thank you for your serious consideration here!
    Sounds difficult. But is the use of "no matter to..." grammatically wrong?
    Last edited by DreamingAnn; 01-Dec-2010 at 18:00.

  6. #6
    Jay Louise's Avatar
    Jay Louise is offline Junior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    note 1:
    Ah HA! The point you wanted to make was that yes, learning history will bore you to tears, especially if you are learning a lot of names and dates and dry facts. However, I think it is very important and here is why.

    That would be a valid approach. My perception may have been clouded by my own expectations and how I would personally approach the subject.

    note 3:
    Exactly!

    note 5:
    "no matter to" (at least in AmE) is not grammatically correct. We would say,
    It doesn't matter if you write with your left or right hand, as long as you write.
    It doesn't matter whether the sky is clear or cloudy, as long as it isn't raining.
    I like the strength and power that comes across in the way you've phrased this and all the alternatives I come up with seem to dilute it.

    Whether by individuals or nations, the significance of history can never be ignored.

  7. #7
    DreamingAnn is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    25
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: This is my first TOEFL writing, please help me to correct it!

    Thank you Jay!!!

Similar Threads

  1. TOEFL Essay Writing Practice
    By Red5 in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-Feb-2010, 22:28
  2. [Essay] Toefl essay~ need help to correct
    By san2612 in forum Editing & Writing Topics
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-Dec-2009, 12:36
  3. [Essay] (TOEFL)Plz correct my essay,thanks!
    By momoci in forum Editing & Writing Topics
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 20-Nov-2009, 08:08
  4. [Essay] May help me to correct my Toefl essay
    By xixinh in forum Editing & Writing Topics
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 14-Jul-2009, 09:38
  5. toefl/writing section
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 31-Dec-2007, 07:15

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk