- Slides: 21
TOPIC SENTENCES: Be sure to name your subject, don’t use pronouns: Yes – Knights were an important part of the feudal system. No – They were an important part of the feudal system.
TOPIC SENTENCES: Keep your topic sentences general: Yes – The armor used by knights had many disadvantages. No- The armor used by knights was heavy and they couldn’t get up easily once they fell.
GOOD PARAGRAPHS: Check list: Indent all paragraphs No “I” or “me” in historical essays. Do not run all your points into one sentence. Each point you want to make needs to be in its own sentence. Be sure you have 5 – 8 sentences per body paragraph. Introduction and conclusion paragraphs have no fewer than three sentences.
EXAMPLE: Good paragraph: To become a knight took many years. At age seven, his parents sent him to the castle of another lord, possibly a relative. As a page, he waited on his hosts and learned manners. When he was around fifteen years old, the young man became a squire. He now waited on a knights of the household, helping him with his armor and weapons. The squire accompanied the knight on the hunt and in battle. At age twenty-one, he became a full-fledged knight. Prior to his being dubbed a knight, he had an elaborate bath, spent a day fasting and a night praying in the church. To become an experienced knight, he spent an additional year or two fighting in local wars or taking part in mock tournaments.
Bad paragraph: They fought for their chosen lady. Knights were pages, squires and then knighted and they had a code of chivalry.
YOU CHOOSE THE BEST PARAGRAPH! Choice #1: Lincoln Southeast High carries a medieval theme throughout the school. The students are referred to as the knights. The mascot is Wally Mc. Knight and the drill team members are known as the Shirettes. The yearbook is called the “Shield”, the newspaper is called “The Clarion”, and the official monthly newsletter sent home t parents is the “Knightlife Banner”. The talent show in the spring is referred to as the “Night of Knights”.
Choice #2: Mr. Brent Toalson is the principal at Lincoln Southeast High. He is expected to meet with parents, file state reports, attend district meetings and evaluate teachers. Some of his other duties include attending athletic events and providing leadership to students and staff. Mr. Toalson is a mediator between the community and the school. This sometimes means settling disputes with neighbors of the school, contacting Social Services, and working directly with the police. Dr. Stoehr is also an assistant principal at Lincoln Southeast High.
Choice #3: Mr. Brent Toalson, principal at Lincoln Southeast High, has many responsibilities. He is expected to meet with parents, file state reports, attend district meetings and evaluate teachers. Some of his other duties include attending athletic events and providing leadership to students and staff. Mr. Toalson is a mediator between the community and the school. This sometimes means settling disputes with neighbors of the school, contacting Social Services, and working directly with the police.
THESIS WRITING AP – style thesis includes: Specific categories of similarity that will be covered Specific categories of differences that will be covered Takes a debatable stand ( including whether they are MORE SIMILAR or MORE DIFFERENT ). Provides “plausible conjecture” as to why they are more similar or different beyond the categories already given. EXAMPLE: ( From the “Dogs” Essay ) While owning a dog has its disadvantages ( cost, training ), the benefits ( love, companionship ) outweigh this because humans have an inborn need for interaction.
A THESIS STATEMENT IS a sentence that tells readers the main points your paper covers and in what order they appear. It is your entire paper squeezed in 1 sentence at the end of the introduction.
A THESIS STATEMENT INCLUDES your distinct standpoint on the subject; i. e. : “taking a stand” ( “the civilizations are more similar in. . ”) One word can establish your standpoint! a brief summary of the main arguments; a roadmap for the paper.
FAQ ON THESIS STATEMENTS: 1) Does every paper need a thesis statement? - Yes. 2) Where do I put it? - At the end of the introduction. 3) Can it be longer than 1 sentence? - No. 4) Can I rewrite it if I change my mind? - Sure. Revisit your thesis statement as you work on the paper.
A STRONG THESIS STATEMENT IS Disputable • Not obvious • Some readers can disagree Focused • Not too broad • Your position is clear Relevant • Not boring • Readers won’t say ‘so what’?
A THESIS STATEMENT AND HOW IT RELATES TO THE REST OF THE PAPER A thesis statement should: answer the questions ‘how’ and/or ‘why’; provide the logic of the paper; cover the entire paper. The rest of the paper should: echo a thesis statement in every sentence; prove that thesis statement is correct; repeat a rephrased thesis statement in the conclusion.
5 GROUPS OF NEVER-USE WORDS: Personal pronouns – I, you, we Uncertainty qualifiers – might, maybe, perhaps Extremism symptoms – everything, all, none, always, never Vague formulations – some, kind of, somewhat Obvious exaggerations – life-saving, best of the best
BEST AND WORST EXAMPLES - PART 1 Declaration of topic: Weak: Nursing as a demanding profession. Strong: Nursing requires not only substantial education, but also perfect self-discipline and enhanced professional ethics. Questions: Weak: Is study during sleep possible? Strong: The recent studies have revealed that people can learn during sleep and subconsciously modify their behavior after they wake up.
BEST AND WORST EXAMPLES - PART 2 Falling between 2 stools: Weak: Sometimes students enjoy their studies, but sometimes they don’t. Strong: There is a direct relationship between students’ attitudes towards study and their learning outcomes.
BEST AND WORST EXAMPLES - PART 3 Too many letters Weak: I am going to discuss the importance of reducing the sugar consumption in American elementary school children who consume nine times the recommended daily amount of sugar because of the prevalence of soda machines and unhealthy snacks in the school canteens. (41 words) Strong: Sugar consumption of American elementary school children should be reduced by controlling the menus of school canteens and raising children’s awareness of healthy diets. (26 words)
PLAUSIBLE CONJECTURE: The “Dog” essay would have: a) Same intro; b) same body paragraphs; c) “plausible conjecture” Paragraph on “plausible conjecture” would be something like: Humans are social beings which means they enjoy interactions. They like being around other people and that even includes other animals, like dogs. For those living alone or even the school child who comes home to an empty house, a dog provides a warm welcome! Unlike their human counterparts, they are never in a bad mood and the greeting is always receptive. This is why they are perfect visitors to lonely residents of nursing homes, at hospitals, and rehab centers.
ANOTHER THESIS…ANOTHER P. C. Thesis: While owning a dog has its economic and time- management disadvantages, the benefits ( love, companionship ) outweigh this because humans, especially Americans, are insatiable consumers. Plausible Conjecture: Dogs contribute to Americans consumption of consumer goods. It has been determined that Americans spend more money on their pets than people spend on their own food in countries such as Haiti, and Ethiopia. Just as Americans have a compulsion to buy the latest electronics, they become obsessed with the latest dog creation, such as labradoodles. The fact that Petco and Petsmart have become American icons and there is a need for doggy daycare, dog walkers, dog sitters, is proof that dogs have become a status symbol for American overindulgence at the expense of the common sense of humanitarianism.