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How to write an essay

Persuasion paper format
by

Russell Melton

on 31 October 2016

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Transcript of How to write an essay

How to write an essay
Coach Melton
English III
Haughton High School
Persuasive paper...
Brainstorm!!!
Develop thesis
Write topic sentences
Use TSQE for body paragraphs
Introduction
Conclusion
Thesis

must contain a topic and a limiting idea

NEVER a question or a quote

is the "road map" for your paper
Topic Sentences
Begining paragraphs to which all sentences share a single idea
A thesis is not a title
Poor: The Decline of Baseball
Better: Baseball, once a national pastime and even an addiction, has lost its popularity because of the new interest in more violent sports.
Poor: Homes and Schools.
Better: If parents want better education for their children, they must be willing to commit their time to working with the schools.

A thesis is not an announcement of the subject
Poor: I want to share some thoughts with you about our space program.
Better: Since the space program has yet to provide the American people with any substantial, practical returns, it is a waste of money and should be dissolved.

A thesis is not a statement of absolute fact
Poor: William Shakespeare wrote King Lear.
Better: King Lear exemplifies the finest development of Shakespeare's dramatic talent.

A good thesis is restricted:
It limits the subject to a manageable amount
Poor: People are too selfish.
Better: Rush hour traffic exemplifies human behavior at its worst.
Poor: Crime must be stopped.
Better: To stop the alarming rise in the number of violent crimes committed every year, our courts must hand out tougher sentences.

A good thesis is unified:
It should express one major idea about one subject
Poor: Detective stories are not a high form of literature, but people have always been fascinated by them and many fine writers have experimented with them.
Better: Detective stories appeal to the basic human desire for thrills.

A good thesis is specific
Poor: The new Denver Art Museum is impressive.
Better: The new Denver Art Museum is a monument to human folly.
Poor: Hemingway's war stories are very good.
Better: Hemingway's war stories helped to create a new prose style.
Works Cited
Mr. Lettiere's English on the Web. Lettiere. 14 Nov 2010. Analysis Paper. 14 Jan 2012. http://www.dukeofdefinition.com/TIQA.htm#thesis
Red Rocks Community College Online Writing Center. Topic Sentence and Thesis Statement :: The Keystones of Organized Writing. 14 Jan 2012. http://www.rrcc.edu/writing/topic-thesis.html
Must have two parts
Topic
Limiting Idea
Who or what the idea is about
idea expressed about the topic. It limits - focuses - what you are saying about your topic
football
What football has meant to my education
T
S
Q
E

Topic sentence
Set up the quote: who? where? when?
Quote. Provide a sentence that features a quote.
Explain how the quote supports the topic.
T
S
Q
E

Transition to second example.
Set up the next quote: who? where? when?
Quote. Provide a sentence that features the second quote.
Explain how BOTH quotes prove the topic sentence
T
S
Q
E

T
S
Q
E

Rainsford's composure is an admirable quality.
When he falls overboard into the Carribean, he does not panic.
Instead, he "wrestles himself out of his clothes" and "with slow deliberate strokes" swam to the island.
Rainsford;s composure saves his life when he finally arrives at the island some time later.
Another way that Rainsford keeps his composure is when Zaroff is hunting him.
After running from the chateau, Rainsford makes a trail to confuse Gen. Zaroff.
He "executed a series of intricate loops" in hopes of losing Gen. Zaroff.
These two actions by Rainsford show that he can think even when in life or death situations.
Introduction

1st paragraph of the essay

Grab your reader's attention

Inform reader about what you are writing

Finish with your thesis
A N T
A
ttention getter
N
T
ecessary Information
a brief summary
NOT a book report
hesis
including the author's full name and title of work
Could be a...
rhetorical question (don't overdo)
relevant quote (from another source)
relevant quote from source
fact or statistic
amusing story (anecdote)
Conclusion
T
R
C
Should restate and reemphasize your thesis
Review the points of your paper - not repeat
apply the same process for restating thesis to your topic sentences
Provide a clincher
refer back to the attention getter
tie up the essay
Without football, I would not have been able to complete my education.
I would have been unable to earn my college degree without playing football.
becomes
by restructuring and using synonyms,
Essay Diagram
Introduction
Attention
Getter
Thesis
Specific
General
A - attention

N - necessary information

T - thesis
TIQE & TIQE
TIQE & TIQE
TIQE & TIQE
Topic sentence
Topic sentence
Topic sentence
Body
Paragraphs
T - restate thesis

A - sum up points

M - moral. what we learned
General
Specific
Conclusion
Restated Thesis
Clincher
Essay Diction Do's and Don'ts
Verbs to Use
Words and Phrases to Eschew
Fatal Errors
Degen, Michael. Crafting Expository Argument. 4th ed. Dallas: Telemachos, 2004. Print
Expository Paragraph
The building block of an argument, an argument for a larger paper, or an argument answering a test question
One idea paragraph
begins with a
clear topic sentence
(TS)
elaborates, develops, a single aspect of the thesis
or provides a single, unified answer to a test question
Subordinate paragraph
begins with a
clear topic sentence
(TS) connected to a preceding paragraph
an extension of the idea introduced in the previous paragraph
because one plank of the thesis may need to be proven by more than one paragraph
for example, one may be writing about courageous characters
the initial paragraph may define courage in its TS and proceed to use one character as an example of the definition in the TS
the next paragraph may provide elaboration of a second character, one who also fulfills the definition of a courageous character from the previous paragraph
Glue paragraph

much shorter and serves as a transition between main ideas, or topics
One idea & Subordinate
paragraph qualities
Topic Sentence
:
a single focused idea that supports the thesis or responds to an essay question
tells the reader the specific topic and any related issues the writer will be addressing
two parts: organization method + aspect of the thesis
Elaboration
:
an idea; a focused point that id extended and elaborated futher by five types of examples
direct quotation followed by writer's commentary
paraphrase of details from text and commentary
direct quotation blended with commentary
additional explanantion of an idea
discussion of a contemporary or literary comparison
Coherence
:
evidence of realted thoughts proving why one sentence follows another and how the writer organizes the evidence to support the TS
word glue
logic glue
Sentence Variety
:
Varying the length and type of sentences to produce a pleasing cadence to prose. A writer's ability to use paralell structure and modification illustrates and helps communicate more complex ideas.
Diction
:
Writers should use appropriately sophisticated vocabulary, vivid verbs, and concrete nouns.
Sentence type
Simple
Compound
Complex
Compound-Complex
Sentence length
Telegraphic (4 words)
Short (5-10 words)
Medium (11-20 words)
Long (30+ words)
Sentence beginnings
introductory phrase
adjective, adverb, verbal, etc...
introductory dependent clause
Introductory appositive
Two adjectives
Single adverb
Interjection
Step One: Create the
topic sentence
Write the TS in response to a test question or in support of a thesis
Step One: Gather
evidence
Specific details (concrete showing details in the literary text); quote
Should prove, or support, the TS
Question the evidence
Where does the evidence occur in the plot or poem?
What actions of a character support the TS? When do these actions occur? Why do the occur?
What does a character say that supports the topic? When is it said? Why is it said?
What is revealed by the narrator that provides supporting evidence?
Step Three: Apply four
strategies
for drafting paragraph.
Drafting strategy One:
Organize
the evidence
by time - chronological order - the order of "when" evidence is presented
by place - spatial order - evidence grouped by location in which it is found
by idea
definition
analogy
comparison/contrast
classification
cause and effect
Drafting strategy Two: Add necessary
transitions
by adding a transitional sentence between ideas
by adding a transitional phrase or clause at the end of one, or at the beginning of another sentence
Drafting strategy Three: Maintain topic
focus
To prevent an abrupt change that interrupts the flow of ideas, craft sentences with beginnings that focus on the paragraph's topic
done by using exact word or words (may become redundant!)
done by using synonyms or pronouns
done by using introductory phrase or dependent clause
Regardless of the type of opening, the focus is to tie the paragraph's topic to that sentence....this is known as a
topic string
.
emphasizes
compares
provides
elucidates
contrasts
implies
clarifies
parallels
alludes (to)
shows
mirrors
defines
suggests
echoes
illustrates
argues
develops
connotes
creates
juxtaposes
exemplifies
I, me, my, mine, myself,
You, your, yourself, yourselves
&
b/c (for because)
cause (for because)
w/o (for without)
hyphenated words at end of lines
is when
because of the fact that
this paper will explain
during the month of
the reason is because
as will be shown
due to the fact that
last but not least
this quote shows
as a result of
first of all
this quote means
this is
that is
there is
I think, feel, believe
In my opinion
Which is
Who is
It seems as if
As has been clearly shown
In this essay I will
At the present time
As if anyone can see
Always there for me
for the reasons stated
the book I read was
being as
As these examples show
In conclusion
Empty Modifiers
Excise them from your writing!
Interesting
Really
A lot
Very
Many
Awesome
Hopefully
and NEVER make the mistake of using "alot"!!!!
Avoid using redundancies.
Avoid using redundancies
continue further
visible to the eye
necessary equipment
combine together
rebaound back
ten in number
cooperate together
descend down
each seperate thing
revert back
pretty in appearance
exact same
sufficiently enough
center around
Avoid using redundancies.
Avoid using redundancies
Thou Shalt Not Judge
by using these judgemental statements
the best book, poem, whatever
this great novel
a briliant study
the best writer
a marvelous play
the most famous writer
a genuis work/short story...
sentence fragments
run ons/comma splices
split infintives
tense shifts (Always use present tense)
contractions
mistakes in...
pronoun-antecedent agreement
pronoun reference
hyphenation at end of line
use of apostrophes, commas
parallel structure
quotation punctuation, citaion
frequently mispelled words
usage
numbers/numerals
titles
Your OPINION about the subject! It must be arguable, inspiring, and unique.
You should be able to argue BOTH sides effectively. Strong arguments acknowledge the converse of their thesis and then prove it false - they don't ignore the converse altogether.
Marshall, Justin. How to Write an Essay. 1st ed. New York. Spark. 2008. Print.
Outlining
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