The How to write what you want to say... books provide parents, teachers and students with a unique tool for improving writing from the middle years of schooling to tertiary level.  
Students who struggle with putting their ideas into writing need the language that mature writers use. These books provide that language in the form of sentence starters and connectives. 




How to write what you want to say...

The idea for How to write what you want to say came from the Pat Hipwell's experiences with her own children, especially Elizabeth, who was pursuing tertiary studies at the time of writing.

Students struggle with putting into words what they want to say, especially when the "saying" involves writing. It has been Pat's experience that students need help to develop the language that mature writers use.

In these books there are sentence starters and key connectives that students use when demonstrating a particular writing skill. Language is the way it is because of the job that it does, and letting students into the secret of this makes a significant difference to the quality of the work they produce.

I have found that the ‘Little Blue Book’ has made teaching writing a lot easier. It helps with writing criteria sheets and, when a student gets stuck for sentence starters, it is great to be able to offer a couple of options.  Creating exemplars for students has been made easier as well. 
Rebecca Glynn – Learning and Teaching Coach 

I love this resource!
Kay Whittaker - Parent, Gladstone

I use the book in class, especially with my middle school classes. Today I am doing a lesson on comparing two sets of data in mathematics and I am going to use the section on comparing. These give my students the confidence to begin to write and when they have that momentum they write with confidence and style. 
Peter Cocks - Science and Maths Teacher

To be honest these books have probably given me a higher score in NAPLAN. This book helps me a lot. 

How to write what to say is a helpful book as it gives me a variety of sentences and words to choose from. Not only is the book small and understandable it does the thinking for you. I now no longer have a blank page. I can start my sentences easier thanks to the book.
Leah McAuley - Student 

How to Write What You Want to Say fills a gap that existed in resources for students in that it draws together relevant elements that comprise a thinking skill. Staff love the fact that we now have a great tool to use when teaching the all-important skills that are common to all curriculum area and an integral part of the Australian Curriculum. Students love the sensible, easy-to-follow layout. The real proof of the quality of the book is the almost immediate positive impact its use has had on the way in which students write. A must for educators and students.
Ellen Kean - Head of Department, English and LOTE, Toolooa State High School 

I wanted to email you to tell you how much I appreciate your little book How to write what you want to say. I am a first year university student (mature aged) and am struggling with writing academic essays for the first time in 30 years. I picked up your book at the ABC shop before Christmas and it is already dog-eared. It cuts to the chase and is, frankly, far more useful than the many resources and other 'how to write an essay' books I have come across.

Marie Dowd - University Student

How to Write What You Want to Say has been one of the most valuable teaching resources that I have stumbled across.  As a teacher, it has given me the confidence to teach students how to approach key task words and has allowed me to develop a framework for breaking down in-class and assessment tasks.  For my students, I have witnessed many of them experiencing the ‘light-bulb’ moment when they read the definition of the task word and then see it in action.  The sentence starters have also given them the confidence to know that they are ‘starting off on the right foot’ and it’s exciting to see their work improving as they incorporate more of these.  It is a resource that I highly recommend to all of my teaching colleagues! 
Amanda Favier - Teacher


A spoonful of vocabulary fun
A spoonful of vocabulary fun

August 15, 2018

Writing exercises using spoonerisms, and other quirks of the English language, will help foster a deep understanding of words and terms without soaring your students billy.

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Share your thoughts on the blue book
Share your thoughts on the blue book

August 08, 2018

Our little blue book, How to write what you want to say... is now six years old and ready for an update. Before work begins on the new edition, we would love to hear your thoughts on what you like and what could be improved. 

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Improving the Quality of Students' Writing in Business
Improving the Quality of Students' Writing in Business

August 06, 2018

More than one hundred delegates attended Catherine's session which may indicate that, regardless of curriculum changes, written communication remains essential for success in studies of business. Many students, however, struggle with the use of appropriate business texts, subject-specific language and conventions.

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