Rethinking College Writing Instruction

Learn to see the “verb spine” in a paragraph


Verbs are important. They provide fifty per cent of the energy in a sentence. That implies that in a ten-sentence paragraph, the most important ten words are buried. What if you had x-ray glasses and could see the verbs popping out–a string of them like ten Christmas lights–a sort of spinal cord? Well you can. (Press the down arrows to see the whole document.)

Verb Vision-- Seeing a Paragraph's verbs as a Spine

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John G. Maguire
307 Market Street, #306
Lowell MA 01852