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Writing a Business Letter: High School Lesson Plan

written by: Trent Lorcher • edited by: SForsyth • updated: 9/11/2012

Add a little variety in your writing curriculum by teaching students how to write a business letter. This plan walks you through the process.

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    Business letters are commonly used for job offers, requests for information, or as a letter of introduction. With this lesson plan, students will write a business letter to learn more about a profession of their choice. Review this information with students. Business letters must contain:

    1. A heading, the address of the business, a greeting, a body, a conclusion, and a signature.
    2. Formal, polite language with a clear purpose with relevant background information.
    3. Standard business formatting with consistent spacing and indentations.
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    Assignment

    Write a business letter to learn more about a profession.

    1. Prewriting - Choose a topic by listing your strengths and professions that suit your strengths. Remember, some strengths you have yet to develop. Dream big. Use your dream job as the subject of your letter.
    2. Prewriting - Search the internet, phone book, newspaper classifieds or a business directory to find the address of a business you'd like to contact.
    3. Prewriting - Note questions you may want to ask in your letter.
    4. Prewriting - Gather background information on the profession and the company to which you are writing. Research critical issues in choosing a profession: salary, hours, job outlook and opportunities.
    5. Prewriting - Identify your purpose. Remind yourself of the letter's purpose by writing a purpose statement and placing it near you as you write.
    6. Drafting - Begin by selecting a format: block format or modified block format. Make sure the letter contains all essential parts of a business letter.
    7. Drafting - Remember your audience. You are addressing a busy professional and should write respectfully. Include only essential information. Leave the flowery prose for your creative writing assignment. Make your information clear. Use formal style, vocabulary, and tone.
    8. Drafting - Be clear on your purpose. Explain what you want the letter recipient to do, if anything. Do you want an interview, talk on the phone, or gather information, for example. Revising - Review your purpose for writing. Find details that support your purpose. Delete details that do not. Revising - Make sure your language is suitable to your purpose and audience.

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