Prentice, Dan (English: Writing 6)

Week of 11/18:

We are working on writing in complete sentences this week. This has been a point of emphasis for all classes. Students should be writing sentences with crystal clear subjects and predicates. There have been assignments posted on my grade book, so please check Family Link. I will accept late work since I had a substitute last week and I understand directions could have been confused.

 

 

Week of 11/4

This week, we are editing the College Research papers. Students needed another shot at polishing things up. I am going through every paper and providing comments to guide them. As they fix a problem, they should hit “resolve” and get rid of them. I am free after school till 4:00 every day this week except Wednesday to help kids. Many have already received edits and made major corrections.

The kids are also finishing up narrative stories this week. These are first drafts of stories they have been writing in class. We are focusing on plot structure and punctuating dialogue. We are also generally focusing on comma use, capitalization, and writing complete sentences.

College Essay Rubric 

 

Rubric Topic: College Research Essay 

 

Beginner 

2 

Developing 

4 

Accomplished 

6 

Advanced 

8 

 

 

Introductory Paragraph 

 

 

No hook. Bridge doesn’t connect hook and thesis. Thesis may be vague or lacking a point. Confusing wording throughout.   Hook present, but not attention grabbing. Bridge incomplete. Thesis present, but possibly repetitive. Wording confusing at times.   Hook grabs reader’s attention. Bridge somewhat connects hook to thesis. Thesis has three distinct points. Wording mostly correct throughout.   Hook grabs reader’s attention. Bridge clearly connects hook to thesis. Thesis has three distinct points. Wording is correct throughout paragraph. 

 

 

Body 1 

 

 

Topic sentence not clear. Lacking details to support claims or topic. Quote unrelated, not introduced, or missing. Details and/or quote not explained when necessary.   Topic sentence present. Some supporting details present. Details not all clearly supporting topic. Quote related to topic, but not introduced correctly. Some evidence explained, but not all. Wording unclear at times.   Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording slightly off.  

Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording correct throughout.  

 

 

 

 

Body 2 

 

 

Topic sentence not clear. Lacking details to support claims or topic. Quote unrelated, not introduced, or missing. Details and/or quote not explained when necessary. 

 

Topic sentence present. Some supporting details present. Details not all clearly supporting topic. Quote related to topic, but not introduced correctly. Some evidence explained, but not all. Wording unclear at times. 

 

Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording slightly off. 

Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording correct throughout. 

 

 

 

Body 3 

 

 

Topic sentence not clear. Lacking details to support claims or topic. Quote unrelated, not introduced, or missing. Details and/or quote not explained when necessary. 

 

Topic sentence present. Some supporting details present. Details not all clearly supporting topic. Quote related to topic, but not introduced correctly. Some evidence explained, but not all. Wording unclear at times. 

 

Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording slightly off. 

Topic sentence clear and present. Supporting details present. Quote on topic and correctly introduced. All evidence and details are explained when needed. Wording correct throughout. 

 

 

 

Conclusion 

 

 

Thesis is simply repeated nearly word for word. Summary of main points incomplete and repetitive. New ideas suddenly introduced that should be in body. No closing statement.  Thesis nearly repeated word for word. Summary of main points complete, but repetitive. Closing statement present, but repetitive.   Thesis reworded and restated clearly. Summary of main points complete and not repetitive. Closing statement present. Some wording is confusing.  

Thesis reworded and restated clearly. Summary of main points complete and not repetitive. Closing statement present. Wording correct throughout.  

 

 

 

Formatting and Conventions 

 

 

Many errors in MLA formatting and basic conventions like punctuation and capitalization. Works Cited page and in-text citations incomplete.   Many errors in MLA formatting and basic conventions like punctuation and capitalization. Works Cited page and in-text citations complete, but with errors.   Some errors in MLA formatting and conventions. Errors don’t confuse the meaning of sentences. Works Cited page and in-text citations complete with minor errors. 

Very few MLA formatting and conventions errors. Works Cited page and in-text citations complete with minor errors. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10/14 through 10/18

We are starting out on Monday writing introductions/tags for our quotes that will go in our research papers. The kids should have already found a quote to back up each of their thesis points (total of three). We are now just adding introductions to them so the kids can plop the quotes into body paragraphs. 

Notes for introducing quotes:

What could be some introductions that we can use in our quotes?  

Here is a quote to practice on. What is the subject? Who is talking? 

“Every one of our programs—undergraduate and graduate alike—is led by expert faculty who recognize and develop students’ talents.” 

Quote with introduction/tag: NAU has great faculty and their website states, Every one of our programs—undergraduate and graduate alike—is led by expert faculty who recognize and develop students’ talents.” 

The method you follow in these examples is Introductory Phrase + Comma + Quotation marks, then insert quote. 

Consider telling the reader where the quote came from, or introduce the subject.  

Examples: On the NAU website, it says, “insert quote.” 

                  Harvard offers an excellent education and, “insert quote.”  

                  GCU offers students financial aid and, “insert quote.”  

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday: We will be writing body paragraphs. This will be a point where some students will leap forward quickly, and where other students may need support from home to finish catching up. Try to find that perfect balance of supporting the kids at home, but letting them do the majority of the work. I don’t expect any perfect paragraphs in our first research papers. 

Notes for body paragraphs:

Thesis: The University of Vermont is a school one should want to attend because they offer lots of financial aid, it is a small school with small class sizes, and people who graduate from there often find good paying jobs. 
 

First body paragraph based on the thesis above.

Topic Sentence:  This is just a basic sentence about what the paragraph will be about. 

Example if the paragraph topic was about financial aid:  

The University of Vermont has a wonderful financial aid program. 

  1. Supporting evidence should include a detail that backs up your introductory sentence. 

Example: Almost 70% of the students at UV get financial aid. 

Explain evidence and why its important.  

Example: Being able to get financial aid means that students are going to be able to afford college.  

2. Introduced quote: Plop your introduced quote here and check to see that it does back up your point in this paragraph. 

Example: The UV website explains that, “The University of Vermont strives to meet 100% of student financial aid needs.”  

Explain quote: It may be obvious, but you might have to explain how the quote backs up your point. 

Example: If a student had no money, the university is willing to help pay for the student’s entire education.   

3. Supporting evidence:In fact, the average student graduates with only 10,000 dollars in debt. 

Explain if needed, but at this point, the reader probably gets the idea. Your paragraph is full of detail and is done.    

Putting it all together… 

     The University of Vermont has a wonderful financial aid program. Almost 70% of the students at UV get financial aid. Being able to get financial aid means that students are going to be able to afford college. The UV website explains that, “The University of Vermont strives to meet 100% of student financial aid needs.” If a student has no money, the university is willing to help pay for the student’s entire education. In fact, the average student graduates with only 10,000 dollars in debt.  

 

 

 

 

Old notes for anyone who still has to work on their introductory paragraphs.

Notes for Thursday and Friday:
Thursday and Friday we are writing our hooks, bridges, and thesis statements.

For your hook, find one of your most interesting statistic or fact from your research and put it in a sentence. For example, I may say, “Even though Yale costs almost 60,000 dollars a year, the average student graduates with only 13,000 dollars in debt” (“Yale University”). Your hook can be any interesting fact that will grab the reader’s attention. Other ideas include rankings, historical facts, and the number of students at the university (enrollment).

Hook = Interesting fact or statistic about your college.

Your bridge should be around three sentences of basic facts. These facts tell the reader the simple information they need to know like where the college is, if it’s a private or public school, and maybe what the college is best at. You are “bridging” from the hook to the thesis and giving the reader the information that will help them understand the basic ideas in your paper.
Bridge = 3 simple sentences of basic facts.

Thesis = One sentence with an opinion (why your college is great/why people should want to go there) and with three reasons why.

For your thesis, you need one sentence with three ideas about why your college is a great school to go to. These reasons why should be topics you can write at least a paragraph about, so don’t be too specific, and choose things that you have researched. Cost, location, majors, sports programs generally, and specialties for the school are all great topics.

For example: Northern Arizona University is a great university to go to because it has 89 majors to choose from, it only costs 11,000 dollars per year, and it’s located in the beautiful town of Flagstaff, Arizona.

You should also understand the basic formatting for MLA papers. You should know how to write a proper heading, recognizing spacing errors, and paragraph structure

End

 

 

 

 

 

 

9/16 and beyond

We are preparing to research colleges this week. The kids had tons of awesome questions about college, and I hope they have spoken to some parents out there about this topic. We are also continuing to study comma use. They have notes from me that also have the titles to Khan Academy videos as the title for each section of notes. Watching videos would be a great way to study.

Homework for 9/17 or 9/18 that is due Thursday.

Research your university to find out some interesting facts. These can be facts about majors that are available to study, how many people go to the university, facts about the area the university is located, facts about the cost to attend the college, etc. 

  1. Write your facts in complete sentences by hand or by typing. 
  2. Write a sentence that has three facts separated by commas. Example: The University of Illinois has wonderful cornfields, a student population of 40,000, and 83 majors to choose from.
  3. Write two sentences that use introductory elements. Example: Before Harvard got bigger (dep. clause), it had graduating classes of about 35 students. Without a GPA of 3.9 or above, people probably won’t get into Harvard.
  4. Write about a fact (or two) in a sentence that has two independent clauses separated by a comma and a FANBOYS. Example: Stanford has many majors to choose from, and students at this university typically graduate within four years.

If you find an interesting article, try to write down the title and author’s name so that you can find it again. 

 

 

 

9/9 through 9/13

This week, we will be working on the paragraph assignment below and learning about comma use.

We are starting the week by finishing a paragraph we worked on in class Friday. In addition to the directions below, I want the kids to try and get this document in Times New Roman, 12 pt font, and double spaced.

I would like you to type or voice a simple paragraph about a topic of interest to you. 

  1. Choose a topic from below. 
  2. Tell me three reasons why this topic is your favorite in the first sentence. Begin by saying, “Soccer is my favorite sport because I like running (1), I like playing goalie (2), and I have made many friends on my teams (3).” 
  3. Write three sentences to give details about each of the three reasons above. For example, my first body sentence from the intro above would be about soccer being my favorite sport because I like to run. 
  4. Write a concluding sentence that sums things up. “Soccer is a sport I hope I can play the rest of my life.”
  5. Print if you typed or voiced. Turn in paragraph.  
  6. Edit for capitalization, run-ons, fragments, and comma use. 5 Sentences total.

Topics: Best day ever. Favorite sport. Favorite food (be specific). Least favorite food. Favorite way to get around (scooter, bike, skateboard, etc.) 

Here is a sample paragraph on the topic of the fair.  

The county fair was great because the food was fried, the animals were interesting, and the rides were exciting. I ate all kinds of fried food at the fair like fried Snickers and fried Twinkies. The animals I got to check out included camels and turkeys. My favorite ride at the fair was the Gravitron because it made me dizzy. Overall, the fair was awesome. 

 

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Description:

This course is designed to help students grow in their ability to write and to improve their stamina while writing. We will strive to move from simple sentenc


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