INSTITUTIONAL WRITING - English Form 2 Functional Writing Notes

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Business Letters

  • Usually from one organization/company/institution to another, or between such and their customers and other external parties.
  • A business letter is any letter with two addresses, salutation, RE, and ends with a sinature, and whose contents are professional in nature.
  • It is more formal than personal letters.
  • You must have the formatting down.
  • Some types of business letters are:
    • Sales letters
    • Order letters – sent by consumers or businesses to manufacturers, retailers or wholesalers to order goods and services. The contents include quantity, name, etc of the product.
    • Complaint letters – use a tone that will make your complaint be satisfied.
    • Inquiry letters. Written to elicit information from the recipient.
    • Letters of Recommendation. Usually written by previous employer describing the sender’s relationship with and opinion of the job seeker.
    • Others include: cover letters, acknowledgment letters, letters of resignation, follow-up letters, and adjustment letters.

Business Letters Format

  • There are two layouts of business letters: Block and Indented layouts.
  • When you choose to use block layout, all the information is written flush left.
    • Provide your address first.
    • Then skip one line and provide the date.
    • Skip one more line and provide the inside address of the addressee.
    • Note that when using letterhead, there is no need of writing your address. Only begin with the date.
    • Skip yet another line and write salutation. This is followed by a colon. Comma is used for personal correspondence.
    • Write “RE” and write the subject.
    • Write the body. Skip lines between the paragraphs.
    • After the body, write complementary close, followed by a comma, sign, then type your name and title(only if applicable)
  • When you choose to use indented layout:
    • Your address appears on the right.
    • Date on the right.
    • Addressee’s address, salutation on the left.
    • Typing do not start from the flush left.
    • No skipping lines between paragraphs.
    • Type the closing and signature in the center.

Note: Block format looks professional.

Sample Business Letter

Kamato Academy,
P.O. Box 789 – 20100,

January 3rd, 2016.

The Director,
Kamato Academy,
P.O. B ox 789 – 20100,

Dear Ms Jane,


I am writing to provide formal notice of my resignation from Kamato Academy. My last day will be 31st January this year.

I trust four weeks is sufficient notice for you to find a replacement for my position. I would be pleased to help train the person you choose to take my place before I finally leave.

Thank you for offering me the job for the past two years. My experience as a teacher, head of various departments and patron of clubs and societies here has been positive and I am confident that I will use most of the skills I have learnt at Kamato Academy in future.

If you have any concerns, please let me know. I will be more willing to listen to you.

All the best,
D’Matteo Kichapo


  • A poster is any piece of printed paper designed to be attached to a vertical surface e.g. a wall.
  • A poster is intended to convey message at the same time appeal to the audience.
  • A poster can be professionally used for advertisements, announcements, or to share information.
  • A poster can focus on topics like:
    1. Child labour
    2. Drug abuse
    3. Corruption
    4. Prostitution
    5. Domestic violence
    6. Road accident, etc.

How to Create Posters

  • Find a good idea for a poster. You can focus on cars, sports, etc.
  • Create an image or picture with a clearly inspiration point. If for example, talking about child labour, one can draw a child working in the fields, and being whipped.
  • Balance between the picture and the writings.
  • Emphasize the most important information. You can write them in different ink, or underline them.
  • The picture/image and the writing should be within the borderline.
  • Be concise.


Let the students choose any of the topics above and design their posters in groups. Ensure there is a balance between the picture and the words. After they finish, allow them pin their posters on the wall.


The habit of shirking assignments in your class has become rampant. You don’t like it and you want to design a poster to warn your classmates against it. Design that poster.


  • First impression is very important and there is usually no second chance at making a good first impression.
  • An advertisement should catch the attention within seconds – if it doesn’t, then it is considered failed.
  • It is crucial to showcase your product in a very clever way.

How to Create an Advertisement

  • Grab the attention of the audience by coming up with a tagline that is catchy. You can consider using:
    • Humour
    • Rhyme
    • Puns
    • Metaphor
    • Alliteration, etc
  • Type the name of the business.
  • Have a picture to reinforce your message.
  • Balance between the picture and the wordings.


Let the students design their own adverts. They can advertise things like;

  1. New books
  2. New brand of pen
  3. Anything
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