And then I decided that your writing is as beautiful as a simple, yet elegant math question and as adventurous and insightful as a beautiful piece of art. But the big picture only comes alive with specific examples and stories. I’m looking forward to reading it! What can I reply to such a lovely comment? Concrete vs. Abstract Mathematics. Concrete vs Abstract Thinking. The click rate on this email was pretty high, so many people have found it quite impossible to resist clicking. I subscribed for the “16 concise mails” too? I mean that . We sketch the big picture, and use examples to add color. An example of concrete versus abstract thinking is the response to the phrase, "It's raining cats and dogs." Happy writing! I just liked to imagine the top. I’ve felt the same, and still feel like that to some extent. Did we learn how to engage our readers? It’s a mountain of a dream and a mile-high climb to the top. When he was younger, he had no problem being the only boy in his dance class; as a teenager, while his friends were into grime and rap, he went old-school – Bob Marley, Dennis Brown and Aswad. By most accounts, Quamari danced to the beat of his own drum. I’d recommend Jack Hart’s book (A Writer’s Coach) – he discusses the ladder of abstraction in chapter 9. I was so enchanted I just purchased a copy of your “Blog to win business” from Amazon. Exercises A: Recognizing Concrete vs. Abstract Words Take the following list of words; put squares around all of the concrete words and circles around all of the abstract words. I find it hand-wringing-ly frustrating as a business writer when my clients insist that the tone I use is “too conversational” or “too informal”. That’s how I like to write my blog posts . As usual, another thoughtful insight this will remain etched in my brain for a long time – probably forever. A lot of writing is surprisingly poor. satisfying and sticking. Below follows an example of a concrete paragraph from a blog post about the most important question in your life by Mark Manson: Everybody wants to have an amazing job and financial independence — but not everyone wants to suffer through 60-hour work weeks, long commutes, obnoxious paperwork, to navigate arbitrary corporate hierarchies and the blasé confines of an infinite cubicle hell. I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy that book, David! • Love is a kind of irresistible desire; it’s hard to define. I'd like to receive the free email course. An article about knife crime by Gary Younge, for instance, starts with a specific story of a specific student: Quamari Barnes, a 15-year-old student, had been stabbed several times. Most people remain stuck at the top half of the ladder, but the most interesting content combines the very top with the very bottom of the ladder; it mixes the super-concrete with the really abstract. In his excellent book “A Writer’s Coach,” Jack Hart calls this the ladder of abstraction. After his retirement, Mr. So, abstract and concrete aren’t discrete categories. Maybe I should be more grateful for bad teachers, so there’s still enough interest in reading my blog posts , I hope you’ll enjoy Jack Hart’s “The Writing Coach”, You’re right, I’m sure the teachers didn’t mention that we have to mix abstract advice with concrete imagery. Your idea on abstract vs concrete is interesting, I’ve actually never thought about the distinction between the two but now that I think about it, I can wholeheartedly agree with you — they are indeed very distinct from one another. Jack Hart doesn’t suggest a specific scheme or formula. For example, many abstract noun lists include the word laughter, but others leave it out, as it’s something that can be heard, seen, and physically felt. Please try again. 1990) and use it often in my daily life in general. I like dipping into it and read a chapter here or there. In essence, an abstract noun is a quality, a concept, an idea, or maybe even an event. You might think of the bruised apples your mother used for cooking your favorite apple sauce. That’s what makes this post good. (kind), The wrestlers exhibited immense ___________________. The diffusion of constitutional judicial review over the past half-century has resulted in the emergence of two dominant ‘models’ of review, the American and the European. I really his perspective on this, too. Some may think in concrete terms and some in abstract terms. 10 Good Abstract Examples That Will Kickstart Your Brain. I don’t think it’s a book to read from cover to cover in one session of binge reading. Or perhaps you think of the zesty Granny Smith you had yesterday afternoon. thanks for this one again. A good journalist may narrate the story of one refugee family, before explaining the trends in people’s movements across the earth. Writing for Social Media, a writing course I’m currently taking on edX brought me here. It may also be related to the approach used to solve problems, inductive vs. deductive reasoning. Thank you again. I’m glad you enjoyed this one, Debbie. If we want to share our big ideas without boring our readers to tears, we have to mix abstract advice with concrete imagery. An architect shows photos or drawings of buildings to illustrate architectural trends. It sounds like you had a much better English teacher than I’ve had! I bet you have more than enough juicy stories to tell! Mr. And it’s good to know I wasn’t the only one with bad teachers . Af-722 K. Wiemer-Hastings, X. Xu/Cognitive Science 29 (2005) ter clarifying questions, participants received the … Also, see how other writers you admire implement this idea; that’s one of the best ways to learn more and improve your writing (it’s what I continue to do to improve my writing). Cat Ball Dragon Happiness Yellow Fairy Dust Rainbow Rain Damp Water Seaweed Juice Hopeless Itch Harp Gold Warmth Burning Helpful Smile Anger Frown Wish Sweat They achieve the object oriented concepts such as encapsulation, inheritance and polymorphism through the use of classes. He would have us write a short essay almost everyday. I didn’t fully understand it before but your examples helped me see the big picture of how each type of language works. We learned about grammar and punctuation. Thus, for example, a concrete thinker can think about this particular dog; a more abstract thinker can think about dogs in general. A question to a fellow litty: what do you think of Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven? You’ve been reading Jack Hart! I think last two lines is the summary of the post, love the style. Organizing our own treasure hunt and discovering the treasures is fun, right? A Writer’s Coach sounds like a great read. Your advice is always a worthwhile read Henneke and while ‘yes’ I’m guilty of skimming for tidbits I look forward to your posts my dear. Thanks for helping me understand why I keep getting confused with what is said not just with teachers but with everyday people. Thought Experiment Developing an analogy that simplifies a complex problem. I purchased her book “Steering the Craft,” but haven’t read it yet. I agree with you—far too much writing is far too formal and it fails to engage. A pear, a grape, a juicy pineapple—these are all concrete words because we can hold a pear in our hand, taste a grape, and smell a ripe pineapple; they’re tangible. Huh. In contrast to concrete words, abstract words are the names for qualities and attributes. What a wonderful contemporary illustration of the use of Ladder of Abstraction! Did you click through to read Mark Manson’s article? (friend). Happy writing! Concrete terms refer to objects or events that are available to the senses. I hope you’ll enjoy the “snacks!” . 3: Abstract method That’s because in the original text it wasn’t a capital because it wasn’t the start of the sentence. Not all abstract math has a manipulative or easily found leading questions that can aid in the process of moving from concrete to abstract. Robert asked: Regarding the term 'Concrete' as opposed to 'Abstract'. Best regards, Peter. So thank you, Henneke for another great post and thank you for the recommendation, will check it out. Many writers stay stuck at the top half of the ladder. This is an excellent post. I actually read the chapter about the ladder of abstraction a couple of months ago, but didn’t quite know how I wanted to write it about until we were doing metaphors in the course last week , I appreciate your recommendation on my courses, too , Hi Henneke, I not only enjoyed your article but didn’t skim read at any point; so I guess you walked the talk. I love writing and sharing what I learn! You wouldn’t let me off the hook before the scene became vivid with details. I still remember how you taught me during the course, to use examples and metaphors. While some of them are a little more technical than others, they all follow the basic rules of what it takes to write a good abstract. In metaphysics, abstract and concrete are classifications that denote whether the object that a term describes has physical referents. Before you know you can spend hours reading here …. Excellent post! Very helpful examples of the difference between concrete and Abstract thinking. I survive by focusing on getting the essentials right. The data are cold facts outlining the big picture. The Science; It’s not always easy to determine if a noun is abstract or concrete. Why can’t I remember that when I’m writing!? Answer Key: 1 – Kindness 2 – Strongness 3 – Darkness 4 – Pleasure 5 – Friendship, Copyright 2020 Ginger Software | Happy writing, George! The email page you sent was killer. Interestingly, Jack Hart also refers to that book – that’s where he first came across the Ladder of Abstraction. At school, you might have learned that words are either abstract or concrete. Good educational content jumps from concrete to abstract and back all the time. Good journalists educate readers by mixing specific stories with abstract data and trends. Then I came cross Harleena Singh and Aha.now.com., The Wondereof tech.com and your highly educating and super reading site Your clear thinking and analytical writing could be a master class in any University – this is not flattery. Or perhaps I just never considered it this way. The abstract ladder really got me thinking and when I saw the mix of concrete and abstract to deliver interesting content, it was another light bulb moment. In contrast, success, failure, and a mathematical equation are abstract concepts because we can’t touch failure, we can’t taste an equation, and we can’t smell success. Instead, there are concrete types of animals such as Dog, Cat, etc. Examples of Concrete Words Examples of concrete words are “father”, “sailor”, “radio”, “church”, and “pencil”, to name but a few. Concrete: Independent Practice Exit Ticket: "Before making a decision..." "It is widely discussed..." "We have. To at least one of the abstraction ladder and to write about and then include “ textual evidence to!, this whole abstract vs concrete vs abstract examples language, but dream and retirement are.... I relate to my eyes glazing over looking for interesting tidbits stuck at the end each... These are just a few examples of concrete terms refer to tangible, qualities or characteristics, things know. Relate to my teachers who left me so much for sharing your knowledge with us time and again to that... Without absorbing any knowledge should conceptually be marked as abstract dogs., theories, conditions, and share stories! 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