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Text Analysis: Example 2

Example of a Completed Written Text analysis

Mandy Fleming - October, 2005

La ecología
Text Title:
En el hotel, como en casa, algunas medidas sencillas para proteger el medio ambiente
Grade Level:
University, 3rd semester
Language Proficiency Level:
intermediate low/mid


Key related concepts
Natural resources, pollution, conservation


  1. The greenhouse effect is one result of pollution. It results in heat being trapped below the Earth’s layers of gases & the surface temperature increasing which creates an ecological and climatic imbalance.
  2. We consume large amounts of energy whose renewal rate is 100,000 times slower than the rate at which we use them. Petroleum will be used up by 2040 and natural gas by 2060 if we continue at this rate of use.
  3. The production of electricity generates pollutants in our environment.
  4. Water is precious and rare and within 50 years, 2,500,000,000 people will be faced with a shortage of water.
  5. Both natural gas and fuel come from petroleum. Their use creates residual contaminants.

Essential Understandings or “Big” Ideas (Generalizations)
Our individual and collective actions affect our future and the future of our planet.

Unfamiliar cultural assumptions

Products (unfamiliar or familiar but used in a new way)
Filters on dryers and central control units of heating/cooling systems
“limpiavasos” – separate machine for washing glasses in restaurants
furnace, pilot light, insulation of piping/wiring

Practices (unfamiliar or familiar but used in a new way)
These practices may be unfamiliar to some in the class based upon their home life and prior experiences:
       Only lighting pilot light of a water heater when water is needed
       Watering plants/gardens by hand (as in the photo in the text)

Those who use appliances are responsible for their upkeep and maintenance.
Use only what is “needed.”
We should want to protect our natural resources.
Everyone cooks and cleans.

Text Organization

Purpose (e.g., present information, teach a moral, entertain, etc.)

Discussion and Instruction/Procedures:

The principle purpose of this text is to describe how to protect the environment; however, it does also have a component of convincing and informing throughout that might lead it to a discussion structure. While the text structure and discourse features support this, many of the linguistic features related to the discussion genre are overshadowed by those related to the genre of instruction/procedure.

Text Structure (e.g., introduce setting/character, events, problem/resolution, etc.)


Thesis / Personal Statement of of Position: To live better, improving our hotel services without putting in danger our planet is our goal.

Supporting Arguments and Evidence:
Natural resources are being used up; our energy consumption is increasing.
The Earth is heating up because of air pollution.
The Earth is a fragile energy source.
Electricity production is generating pollutants.
Water is necessary for daily life and within 50 years, thousands of millions of people will
be without it.
Fuel and gas use creates pollutants.

Refuting Counter-Arguments and Evidence: not included

Re-iteration of Point of View / Conclusion: “Our planet is unique. Our planet is precious. We
should all do what is in our hand to protect it.”


Heading/Title: Some simple steps to protect the environment

End Goal: To improve the future (for us and the Earth)

List of Materials/Ingredients: N/A

Steps in Sequence: Turn out lights; Don’t leave televisions & computers in “power save;” adapt heating to your needs; defrost refrigerators, minibars & freezers; Turn off or reduce the power of kitchen appliances when not in use; adjust thermostats to needs (i.e. empty rooms); fill completely dryers; control & clean dryer filters; regulate and check the filters of central heating/cooling units; repair leaks; don’t allow water to run unnecessarily (grooming, hygiene, cleaning); shower instead of bathing; water plants in the morning or at night; use a bucket & mop to clean the kitchen; fill dishwashers & glasswashers; fill washing machines & respect the rinse cycle; adjust water filters, washing machines, ice makers, etc.; clean burners on gas ranges; cover pots; check furnace once a year; clean regularly kitchen appliances & parts; maintain furnaces, kitchen appliances & laundry machines; control and repair insulation of furnaces, water pipes, air circulation systems.

Additional Suggestions: Do at work & in the hotel as you do at home; Working together makes a difference

Visual Aids: Each step includes a drawing of a character carrying out the action.

Linguistic Features related to Genre [connectives, (e.g., adverbs of time, conjunctions), verb type (action vs. saying verbs), verb tense, use of dialogue, etc.]


  • Modals:
          Certainty: should (debemos),
          Less certainty: can (pueden)
  • Nominalization: not present
  • Connectives and Conjunctions:
          Showing cause/effect: so that (para que)
          Adding information: now (ahora bien), thus/then (pues), also (también)


  • Action Verbs as Imperatives: protect (protejamos); imagine (imaginen); forget (olvide); leave (deje); adapt (adapte); defrost (descongele); turnoff (apague); reduce (reduzca); adjust (ajuste); make (haga); verify (verifique); repair (repare); avoid (evite); water (riegue); use (utilice); fill (llene); intervene (intervenga); put (coloque); proceed (proceda); clean (limpie)
  • Range of Adverbials:

    Time: when (cuando), regularly (regularmente); while (durante); once a year (una vez al
    Manner: together (todos juntos); to full capacity (a plena capacidad); uselessly (inútilmente)
    Place: in the hotel (en el hotel); at work (en su puesto de trabajo)
    Reason: for the purpose of (con el fin de); given that (ya que); in order to (para)

Learning Strategies and Possible Instructional Activities

Before Reading
Students will activate prior knowledge by brainstorming daily activities that use natural resources. Then they will group/classify these daily activities according to the natural resources that they use. This will serve to provide students with some of the vocabulary (both verbs and nouns) necessary to understand the text. Students will then summarize how each natural resource affects his/her life and the life of others. Additionally this activity serves to make connections between previous and future learning experiences.

During Reading
In order to comprehend the text, students will recognize and use cognates, make inferences from context and drawings, as well use background knowledge. They will also take notes on the commands used to promote the conservation of electricity, water, and fuel/gas.
While carrying out the above, students will also manage their own learning and monitor the task to ensure comprehension. They may also use selective attention to focus on the important phrases and ideas while cooperating in groups.

After Reading
Students will cooperate with other students from other groups to share their commands and together they will summarize the most important (repeated) activities for protecting the environment according to the text. They will find/apply patterns about the formation of commands in order to diminish the consumption of trees/plants.
Each student will then personalize the information learned by stating what steps they will take to improve the environment. A week later, students will evaluate their application of steps in their everyday life by reflecting upon what they have or have not done.

Vocabulary (Words, Phrases, Idioms)

Essential vocabulary for learning the content (CO)
Vocabulary related to environment: el medio ambiente; los recursos naturals; los contaminantes; la polución; en peligro
Waste and conservation vocabulary: proteger; unas medidas sencillas; conservar; consumir; apagar; mejorar; agotar
Hotel / home vocabulary: un puesto de trabajo; calentar; la habitación; el servicio de planta; la lavandería; los servicios técnicos; cotidiana

Select vocabulary to review or preview (material or activity related) (CC)
Natural resources: el petróleo, el gas, el carbón, el agua
Impersonal expressions: es bueno; es fácil; es increíble; es mejor; es crucial; es malo; es preciso
Indirect object pronouns: me, te, le, nos, os, les

Grammatical Structures and Communicative Functions

Essential language structures and functions for learning the content (CO)

Imperatives (formal, singular) in order to give and respond to directions: olvide, deje, adapte, descongele, apague, reduzca, ajuste, haga, verifique, repare, evite, riegue, utilice, llene, intervenga, coloque, proceda, limpie

Passive voice: se dice, se transforman, se añaden, se crean, se agotan, se estima, se verán

Adverbial phrases in order to describe the purpose of an activity and how often it occurs: todos los días, para calentarnos, para encender, diariamente, regularmente, una vez al año

Adjectival phrases: de espera, de hielo, de climatización, de agua, de dientes, de cocina

Complex sentences with embedded sentences: Vivir mejor mejorando nuestros servicios hoteleros sin poner en peligro nuestro planeta, este es nuestro lema. Todos los días, para calentarnos o climatizar, alumbrarnos, producir bienes de consumo, desplazarnos o conservar los alimentos en frío, emitimos poluciones y consumimos energies naturals cuyas reserves planetarias no son inagotables. Etc.

Select language structures and functions to review or preview (material or activity related) (CC)

Direct and indirect object pronouns to show who/what actions affect: calentarnos, alumbrarnos, desplazarnos, nos conciernen, nos corresponde, convertirnos

Synthetic future tense in order to commit oneself to take action: consumiré, usaré, bajaré, reciclaré, mantendré, apagaré, conservaré, protejeré, utilizaré, etc.

Use of articles: el mañana vs. la mañana



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