The following paragraphs represent weak and strong examples of focus. You can implement them by having your students read them and asking them which they like better and why.
When I first brought my cat home from the humane society she
was a mangy, pitiful animal. It cost a lot to adopt her: forty
dollars. And then I had to buy litter, a litterbox, food, and
dishes for her to eat out of. Two days after she came home with
me she got taken to the pound by the animal warden.
There's a leash law for cats in Fort Collins. If they're not in
your yard they have to be on a leash. Anyway, my cat is my best
friend. I'm glad I got her. She sleeps under the covers with me
when it's cold. Sometimes she meows a lot in the middle of the
night and wakes me up, though.
Strong Example:When I first brought my cat home from the Humane Society she
was a mangy, pitiful animal. She was so thin that you could count
her vertebrae just by looking at her. Apparently she was declawed
by her previous owners, then abandoned or lost. Since she
couldn't hunt, she nearly starved. Not only that, but she had an
abscess on one hip. The vets at the Humane Society had drained
it, but it was still scabby and without fur. She had a terrible
cold, too. She was sneezing and sniffling and her meow was just a
hoarse squeak. And she'd lost half her tail somewhere. Instead of
tapering gracefully, it had a bony knob at the end.