Essay Writing

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: The Writing Process Created by D. Herring Source: http://www.blinn.edu/humanities/writingroom/The Writing Process WR.ppt. Adapted by Mr. Potter for English 11 Classes, Westlake High School

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The Writing Process : 

The Writing Process Created by D. Herring Source: http://www.blinn.edu/humanities/writingroom/The%20Writing%20Process%20WR.ppt. Adapted by Mr. Potter for English 11 Classes, Westlake High School

Stages of the Writing Process : 

Stages of the Writing Process There are several stages to the Writing Process. Each stage is essential. Prewriting Writing (Drafting) Revising Editing

I. Prewriting : 

I. Prewriting Choose/narrow your topic Determine your Audience Purpose Tone Point-of-view Tense Explore your topic Make a plan

Choose/Narrow Your Topic : 

Choose/Narrow Your Topic Your topic should pass the 3-question test: Does it interest me? Do I have something to say about it? Is it specific?

Determine Your Audience : 

Determine Your Audience Your Audience is composed of those who will read your writing. Ask yourself: Who are my readers? What do my readers know about my topic? What do my readers need to know about my topic? How do my readers feel about my topic?

Audience continued. . . : 

Audience continued. . . What do my readers expect? Standard Written English Correct grammar and spelling Accurate information Logical presentation of ideas Followed directions of the assignment!!! What are my length requirements? What is my time limit? What does the assignment consist of? Is research required? What format should be used?

Determine Your Purpose : 

Determine Your Purpose Purpose is the reason you are writing. Whenever you write, you always have a purpose. Most writing fits into one of 3 categories: Expressive Writing Informative Writing Persuasive Writing More than one of these may be used, but one will be primary.

Determine Tone : 

Determine Tone Tone is the mood or attitude you adopt as you write. Serious or frivolous/humorous? Intimate or detached?

Determine Point-of-View : 

Determine Point-of-View Point-of-view is the perspective from which you write an essay. There are 3 points-of-view: First person—”I, we” Second person—”you” Third person—”he, she, they” One of the most common errors in writing occurs when the writer shifts point-of-view unnecessarily!

Determine Tense : 

Determine Tense Tense is the voice you use to designate the time of the action or state of being. Present tense Past tense Future tense

Explore Your Topic : 

Explore Your Topic Pre-writing Techniques: Brainstorming/Listing Freewriting Clustering/Mapping Questioning Discussing Outlining

Make a Plan : 

Make a Plan Before you begin drafting your essay, you should make a plan (a roadmap). Review, evaluate, and organize ideas written in your pre-writing; then make a plan for your essay’s Thesis statement Support Order Structure

Thesis Statement : 

Thesis Statement The thesis statement expresses the MAIN IDEA of your essay, the central point that your essay develops/supports.

Thesis continued. . . : 

Thesis continued. . . Your thesis SHOULD: Accurately predict your essay’s direction, emphasis, and scope Make no promises that the essay will not fulfill Be direct and straightforward NOT be an announcement, statement of opinion, or statement of fact.

Support : 

Support Be sure to evaluate the information in your prewriting carefully in order to choose the best support for your topic. Primary Support—major ideas or examples that back up your main points Secondary Support—details which further explain your primary support

Support continued. . . : 

Support continued. . . Basics of good support Relates to main point Considers readers, i.e. provides enough information Is detailed and specific

Structure/Organization : 

Structure/Organization Consider how your essay will be organized; then create an Outline. Sample Outline of standard 5-paragraph essay: Introduction Body Paragraph 1 Body Paragraph 2 Body Paragraph 3 Conclusion

Write Your Introduction : 

Write Your Introduction Your introductory paragraph should do the following: Be a minimum of 4-6 sentences Tell the audience what to expect from your discussion (thesis) Move from general to specific, with the thesis as the last sentence in the intro Get the reader’s attention Set the tone for the rest of the essay

Introduction, continued : 

Introduction, continued Strategies for developing an Introduction include Providing background information Telling a personal anecdote Beginning with a quotation Using an opposite Asking a question

Write Your Body Paragraphs : 

Write Your Body Paragraphs Each body paragraph should develop one of the specific points mentioned in the thesis. Each BP should contain: Topic Sentence—main idea of BP Primary Support—examples Secondary Support—details

Body Paragraphs: Topic Sentence : 

Body Paragraphs: Topic Sentence A Topic Sentence expresses the main idea of the body paragraph. Begin each body paragraph with a Topic Sentence that Narrows the focus of the paragraph Accurately predicts the direction of the paragraph Refers back to the Thesis statement

Body Paragraphs continued : 

Body Paragraphs continued Body paragraphs must have Unity—everything refers back to main point Support—examples and details Coherence—all points connect to form a whole; one point leads to another

Body Paragraphs: Unity : 

Body Paragraphs: Unity Unity is achieved when everything refers back to the main point ALL SENTENCES SHOULD RELATE BACK TO TOPIC SENTENCE & THESIS. Do not include any ideas that are irrelevant or off-topic.

Body Paragraphs: Support : 

Body Paragraphs: Support Support is achieved through adequate examples and details. Each body paragraph should include at least two examples to support the main idea of the paragraph. Each example should include at least one specific detail that further illustrates the point.

Body Paragraphs: Coherence : 

Body Paragraphs: Coherence Coherence is achieved when all points connect to form a whole; one point leads to another. Coherence is mainly achieved through the use of transitions. Transitions—words & phrases which connect your sentences so that your writing flows smoothly.

Write Your Conclusion : 

Write Your Conclusion The concluding paragraph should Contain a minimum of 4 sentences Refer back to the main point, but not simply repeat the thesis Make an observation on what is written NOT introduce any new ideas Create a sense of closure

IV. Editing : 

IV. Editing Editing is finding and correcting problems with grammar, style, word choice & usage, and punctuation. Editing focuses on the “Little Picture”—Word level.

Editing Strategies : 

Editing Strategies Keep an Error Log to help you identify your problem areas and improve your writing. When editing, review your paper for one type of error at a time; don’t try to read through looking for everything at once.