- Slides: 13
Crafting a C laim Unit 2 – Arg umentative Writing Literary Ess ays
Getting Ready 0 Please get a Literature Book and open to the page of the short story that you would like to write about. 0 “Eleven” by Sandra Cisneros : p. 182 0 “Tuesday of the Other June” by Norma Fox Mazer: p. 204 0“President Cleveland, Where are You? ” By Robert Cormier: p. 228 0 “Aaron’s Gift” by Myron Levoy: p. 242
Today’s Goal: How Think abouta Literary and develop “big idea” for an to Write Essaythe about Character essay and develop a thesis statement. • Reread selected bits • Notice details, think, talk, write to explore: “Why this detail? ” • Think, “What does the character really want? ” and write long • It can help to use thought prompts (Maybe…. Perhaps…. ) • Think about the deep down, internal motivations • Once you have an idea and some evidence, reread again, reread more of the text, reread more closely, and expect your original idea will change • Try to generate an idea about the character that encompasses the whole character and the whole text.
Coming up with a Claim 0 To come up with a strong claim… 0 Reread entries/notes 0 Think again about the text 0 Come up with drafts of possible thesis statements 0 Let’s return to “Raymond’s Run” 0 As I read through my entries about Squeaky, try and come up with 1 or more possible big ideas
Entry #1 I notice that when people say mean things about Raymond, Squeaky reacts by saying, “I much rather just knock you down…” I wonder why Bambara included this detail about Squeaky – that she wants to knock people down. Maybe the author wants to show us that Squeaky is really, really angry over how people treat her brother. On the other had, perhaps Bambara is showing us that Squeaky really loves Raymond – she loves him so much that she’s willing to fight for him. Or could it be that Bambara is trying to show that Squeaky thinks it works better to fight than to talk through stuff.
Entry #2 I think Bambara is trying to show that Squeaky is a good runner. I think maybe she also wants to show that Squeaky is really egotistical, like she is a rapper saying, “I’m the best!” But it is sad she is running a relay race all by herself. Maybe the author is trying to show that Squeaky doesn’t have any friends because she is running all by herself and winning all the spots. I bet maybe she doesn’t have friends because she is always attacking kids.
Entry #3 Squeaky seems tough and angry, wanting to knock down people, but even though she seems tough, what shines through is how much she loves Raymond. He is disabled in some way, I am not sure exactly, and having him tag along could make some people crazy. But she wants to stay near him to look out for him. They go everywhere together. If people tease her brother or treat him badly, Squeaky gets mad. She knows he is different and that he can’t protect himself. PROTECT. That is a good word for what Squeaky does. Squeaky wants to protect her brother from the world. She watches that he walks on the safe side of the sidewalk and knocks anyone down who so much as looks at him. It is like she sees the whole world as enemies to her and to Raymond. Maybe she’s gotten tough because people have made fun of her and she uses that toughness to protect Raymond. But while she thinks she is just protecting Raymond, she is also pushing people away and I sort of wonder if deep down, she is lonely.
Big Ideas 0 Reread the “big ideas” you have jotted down and turn that into a complete sentence. 0 Example: Squeaky seems tough and angry, wanting to knock people down, but what shines through is how much she loves Raymond.
Testing and Tweaking 0 In just a moment, you’ll do this alone… 0 After an essayists drafts a few possible thesis statements, they need to be looked over and tested. 0 Weigh… 0 Does it encompass the WHOLE character 0 Does it ring true 0 With a group around you, turn and talk… 0 Which rings the most true and comes the closest to capturing her essence? 0 Write on a post-it note
Possible Options In the beginning Squeaky hates Gretchen but at the end she wants to be friends with her. Squeaky wants to protect her big brother, but she also wants to have a friend who she can trust not to judge him.
Testing and Tweaking 0 Try to generate an idea about the character that encompasses the whole character and the whole text. 0 It’s all about rethinking, and rewriting, and testing and tweaking 0 Return to your groups and test again!
Writing Time 0 Work with 1 -2 other people that read the same short story that you did 0 Reread some of your entries about that short story (may help to star big ideas) and work together to create a list of possible thesis statements 0 Jot these down separately in your own notebooks 0 As soon as you have 4 -6 possible thesis statements, start testing them to see if they fit with the WHOLE CHARACTER and the WHOLE STORY 0 Choose 1 for yourself; or rework one
Writing Classwork/Homework 0 Reread at least TWO selected passages in your chosen short story (you may want to highlight them in the text). 0 Write about the details that you see in those two passages and what those details reveal about the main character. 0 Choose passages that you are POSITIVE you will be writing about in your essay. 0 Do they relate to your chosen thesis? 0 Write at least two pages in your composition books