Three's a crowd?
April 9, 2011 6:38 PM   Subscribe

Help me brainstorm groups of three words to help a student study for a test.

I have a 5th grade, advanced ESL student who will be taking part in a writing competition. In one section of the test, they are given three words and have to make a sentence. One of their examples is "hurricane wind rain". Of course you can make tons of sentences from the simple to the complex. I need some more to give him as the study packet only contains two examples.

My poor brain is broken and doped up on pain meds. Tendonitis sucks. Just typing this is a challenge. However, that's for a future askme.
posted by kathrynm to Grab Bag (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Sunshine dog chase

Winter fire warm

River water rocks

Ink dark stain

Photograph woman old

Car loud fast
posted by palmcorder_yajna at 6:53 PM on April 9, 2011

"Hurricane, wind, rain" are three nouns. I don't know if this is the formula they are going for or something else entirely. Here a some three noun groups:

mountain flashlight boots

treasure map compass

storm ocean waves

moonlight stars tent

bicycle hill race

picnic park ants

park friend dog

kitchen mom cake

museum dinosaur fossils

library books people

computer desk pencils

baseball coach ball

bed night dreams

party candles birthday

kite wind string
posted by Fairchild at 7:00 PM on April 9, 2011

From what I remember of the packet, yeah, the examples were all three nouns.
posted by kathrynm at 7:05 PM on April 9, 2011

As a method for generating more, why not do it backwards? Grab a novel and take all the nouns out of each sentence. Not all of them will have three (or more - then you can disregard the extra), but it won't take you long to find enough. Children's books might be best, if you want concrete rather than abstract nouns.
posted by lollusc at 7:30 PM on April 9, 2011

They're giving three nouns because they want to see if the student is able to use other parts of speech effectively and confidently in creating his sentences.

A student with only a rudimentary grasp of English might take "hurricane wind rain" and form a sentence like "The hurricane brought wind and rain to our shores." That sentence is acceptable, but it really doesn't demonstrate an advanced level of fluency. The people evaluating the answers will be looking for sentences that use adjectives, adverbs, clauses, etc.

So, while you're helping your student to study for the test/competition, make sure he understands what kinds of things the evaluators want to see. Of course, the flip side is that he shouldn't be overly flowery or verbose just for the sake of getting more words on paper, but he should be thinking about creating the most interesting and appealing sentences he can comfortably manage.
posted by amyms at 9:50 PM on April 9, 2011

It all seems a bit random, but here are some noun groups, if it helps. Amyms' advice strikes me as very sound.

scarf neck snow
garden carrot soil
boy table milk
grass puppy bone
bicycle pedal street
rocket space moon
posted by Paris Elk at 2:52 AM on April 10, 2011

Thanks everyone. Matt has homework now :)
posted by kathrynm at 4:50 AM on April 10, 2011

« Older What changes when you get married?   |   ID this painting's artist, please! Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.