Monday, November 14, 2011

Procedural Text: Manuals and Instructions

Basic Competence for SMA:Working with procedural texts and monolog:
  • Listening: Understanding simple transactional and interpersonal monologs in the form of procedures.
  • Speaking: Expressing various meanings in transactional and interpersonal monologs in the form of procedures.
  • Reading: Understanding various meanings and rhetorical steps in procedural texts.
  • Writing: Expressing various meanings by developing rhetorical steps in procedural texts.
Basic Competence for SMK:3.4 Understanding and retelling manuals (procedural texts).

A. What is a procedural text?

A procedural text is a text which is intended to tell the reader how to do, operate, or make something. The information in a procedural text is usually written in the present tense and is arranged in a logical sequence of events which is broken up into several sequenced steps.

Based on its purpose, a procedural text may explain how things work or how to operate things (how to use the scanner, the computer, the camera, etc.), give instrucions on how to do an activity (cooking recipes, rules for games, science experiments, road safety rules, etc), or give advice concerning human behavior (how to be a good secretary, how to live healthily, etc).

B. What is the format of a procedural text?

  • Recipes usually consist of two groups of information; ingredients and method.
  • Game instructions usually include how to play, game rules, scoring method, and the number of players.
  • Scientific experiments usually include the purpose of the experiment, equipment, procedure, observations and conclusion.

C. How to Write a Procedural Text

  • State your goals clearly at the beginning.
  • List all materials and equipment in order of use.
  • List the steps in chronological order.
  • Focus on general people by using subject "You" or "We" instead of individuals.
  • Use action verbs (imperative verbs), such as cut, peel, plug, turn on, etc.
  • Use sequencing words to connect the steps. E.g.: First(ly), second(ly), third(ly), next, then, etc.
  • Give detailed information on how (carefully, with the knife); where (into the oven); when (after the water boils).
  • Give detailed factual description (shape, size, color, amount).

D. Example of a procedural text

How to Cook Noodles

Many people like noodles for their daily meals. Its delicious taste and simple preparation have made noodles very popular especially in some Asian countries. Here is a recipe to cook noodles.


  1. Noodles
  2. Water
  3. Salt to taste
  4. Stock cube
  5. Noodle packet
  6. Vegetables
  7. Flavoring powder
  8. Seasoning sauce
  9. Spices
  10. Water

Things you need:

  1. Cooking pan
  2. Strainer
  3. Serving plates


  1. Boil the water in a cooking pan.
  2. Add the stock cube or salt if desired. Make sure the stock cube is completely dissolved before adding the noodles.
  3. Add the noodles and turn the heat to low or off. This is different for different kinds of noodles. Some just need to be soaked, others require simmering. Check the package of the noodles to be sure.
  4. Let the noodles simmer or soak for the required number of minutes. This varies too. Follow directions on the package.
  5. Drain off the fluids in a strainer. The noodles are ready for further preparation.


  1. The flavor of the stock depends on the ingredients you wish to add later. Choose chicken if you want to add chicken, beef if you want to add meat etc.
  2. Save the stock for soups and sauces by draining it into a pan.
  3. Take care to add the right quantity of water.
  4. Let the noodles soak the water for some time after they have been cooked.

E. Exercises:

Listen to the following short talk explaining a procedure. Then choose the best answer to the questions below.

  1. Where does the talk take place?
    1. On a plane
    2. In an airpost
    3. At a bus station
    4. At a flight club
  2. What is the purpose of the announcement?
    1. To explain an identification process
    2. To explain how to book a flight
    3. To explain how to get to Bangkok
    4. To explain a boarding procedure
  3. Who should listen to this announcement?
    1. Flight attendants
    2. Pilots
    3. Flight passengers
    4. Border security officers
  4. What should we do if we are in the main cabin?
    1. We should buy a rose.
    2. We should show our boarding pass.
    3. We should board by rows.
    4. We should wait in the waiting area.
  5. How long should we remain in the waiting area?
    1. Until 15:32
    2. Until we hear our row call
    3. For half an hour
    4. Until the pilots are ready
  1. English Online. Instruction. Accessed Nov 6, 2011.
  2. Wikihow. How To Cook Noodles. Accessed Nov 12, 2011.
Updated: May 2nd, 2013.

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  1. Pak Prast,mana tulisan yang tentang di kelas XI RPL??

  2. Tunggu, Amril. Masih belum menemukan waktu yg cukup. :)