Say It Explain It Validate It A Writing Model
Create a STRONG Thesis THESIS: The basic argument advanced by a speaker or writer who then attempts to prove it; the subject or major argument of a speech or composition Your thesis is the FOCUS of your paper. Your thesis, stated in your introductory paragraph, should let your reader know exactly what you will be discussing/defending throughout your paper
Say It . . . In a paragraph • The first goal of any piece of writing: • State your message (Say It) • Example: Many paragraphs are built around a topic sentence, a single sentence that directly states the paragraph’s main idea. The other sentences support, explain, or illustrate the topic sentence. The topic sentence STATES your idea.
Say It . . . In a paragraph • To write an effective topic sentence, analyze the group of details and ideas that you plan to include in a paragraph, and come up with a statement that sums up the common features of the details and ideas. • For example, if you were writing a paragraph about the number of careers involved with working on the Internet, you might write the topic sentence below. • SAMPLE TOPIC SENTENCE: There are a wide range of possible careers related to the Internet. • You just STATED your point.
Say It . . . In a composition • This also applies to writing essays and compositions. • The first paragraph, the introduction, focuses your reader on a particular topic. • Here, in the introduction, you STATE (say) your main idea for the entire essay. • Thesis statement
Say It . . . In a composition • A thesis STATES (SAYS) the key point or argument you wish to make about your topic. • To create a thesis statement, read your grouped notes carefully. Decide on the most important ideas you have gathered, and summarize them. • Sample Thesis Statements: • The space program of the 1960’s helped to unite Americans. • The childhood of Queen Elizabeth I of England had a great impact on decisions she made as a ruler.
Explain It . . . In paragraphs • Your topic sentence contains the paragraph’s main idea and guides the rest of that paragraph. • The remaining sentences in the paragraph should develop, EXPLAIN, or illustrate the topic sentence. These are called supporting sentences.
Explain It …… In compositions • Your BODY paragraphs provide all the EXPLAINING needed to break-down your thesis into understandable parts. • A great tool for organizing the elaboration and explanation found in your body paragraphs is the use of an outline.
Validate It . . In all writing • Validating something is equal to Proving it to be true, accurate, worthwhile, etc… • It is simply not enough to state you point and explain it . . . . • You need to VALIDATE (prove) its worth.
Validate It . . In all writing • Validation comes from citing outside sources that prove your points and your explanation to be true or worthwhile. • When writing about literature, validation will come from: • The text we are studying • Literary criticism • Other outside research
Say it–Explain it–Validate itexample Macbeth’s true self acknowledges that killing Duncan will serve no good purpose. Here you are stating (SAY it) you main point clearly and directly
Say it–Explain it–Validate itexample While alone, Macbeth decides he will not kill Duncan because it would be disloyal and eventually damn his eternal soul to hell Here you are explaining your point specifically as it SHOWS how he is not listening to his moral conscious.
Say it–Explain it–Validate it In Act 1, scene 7 Macbeth laments, “But in these cases We still have judgment here, that we but teach Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return To plague th' inventor: this even-handed justice Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice To our own lips.” He realizes his actions will have eternal consequences. Example Here you are VALIDATING your ideas with support from the text. This proves your ideas to be true and worthy.
Validate it…with research • With the primary source • The text; original work used when researching • Macbeth • With secondary sources • Text and/or artifacts used when researching that are derived from something original
Say it–Explain it–Validate itexample Macbeth’s true self acknowledges that killing Duncan will serve no good purpose. Part of Macbeth’s problem is that he will not listen to his moral conscience. While alone, Macbeth decides he will not kill Duncan because it would be disloyal and eventually damn his eternal soul to hell. In Act 1, scene 7 Macbeth laments, “But in these cases / We still have judgment here, that we but teach / Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return / To plague th' inventor: this even-handed justice / Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice / To our own lips.” He realizes his actions will have eternal consequences.
Remember. . . • It is not good enough to simply say something. It must be validated and explained. • The best way to validate any “claim” is to use evidence: direct quotes from the text • Both primary (Macbeth) and secondary • Then explain the quote
Setting Up your Compositions:Proper Headings-Page 1 Last Name 1 Your Name Mr. Bath English IV, L2 (period #) 23 March 2010 Your Title This is where you begin your first paragraph. Your essay should be double spaced. The heading of your paper (where the name and date are located) is also double spaced. Make sure you indent your paragraphs. Capitalize all sentences and remember your periods at the end. Always put TWO SPACES after each period. Check your spelling.
Setting Up your Compositions: Proper Headings-Works Cited Last Name pg.# Work Cited Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. Prentice Hall Literature: The British Tradition. New Jersey: Pearson Education Inc., 2007, 327-394. or . . . another example: The Tragedy of Julius Caesar. Signet Classic Shakespeare. 2nd ed. New York: Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 1998. 1-104. Basic Example Citation: “Macbeth’s desire to please his wife ….yada yada yada . . . . . . .” (Morgan 335)
. . . Other KEY ideas • Habitually italicize the names of plays. This is especially important with Shakespeare since one usually needs to distinguish the names of the main characters from the names of the plays to avoid occasional confusion: Titus Andronicus [or Titus Andronicus?] is concerned with vengeance.
Check your paper for errors in: Spelling Not just spell check Punctuation Grammar Usage Check your paper for: Correctness – make sure all your facts are right Content – make sure you answer all questions Evidence – check to make sure your all your claims are supported with evidence Use appropriate quotes Make sure quotes are exact Don’t Forget to EDIT
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. . . Other KEY ideas • When quoting four or more lines from Shakespeare, normally you should use block quotation: Richard III tells his troops, Remember whom you are to cope withal: A sort of vagabonds, rascals, and runaways, A scum of Britains and base lackey peasants, Whom their o'ercloyed country vomits forth To desperate adventures and assur'd destruction. (V.iii.315-319) • Block quotations do not require “quotation marks”
. . . Other KEY ideas The roman numerals for Act and Scene are standard, although one sees Arabic used by some critics. In quoting shorter passages in linear form, you still need to indicate line breaks when Shakespeare is writing in verse: Example: Othello recalls, "Upon this hint I spake: / She lov'd me for the dangers I had pass'd, / And I lov'd her that she did pity them" (I.iii.166-168). Note the withholding of final punctuation in this case until after the parenthetical citation. The slash marks indicate line breaks in the verse. • Punctuation marks go outsidethe parenthesis
. . . Other KEY ideas • For verse plays, supply only the act, scene, and line number(s) (either with Arabic or Roman numerals) separated by periods. • Example: • As William Shakespeare's play, Othello, begins, Iago lets loose his wicked passion on Brabantino: "Look to your house, your daughter, and your bags!" (I. i. 85).
. . . Other KEY ideas • Poetry and Classic Verse Plays (like Shakespeare's plays): For poems, you should omit the page number altogether. You should instead cite by using the division number (act, scene, canto, book, part) and the line number, with periods separating all the numbers. If there are no line numbers in the poem, simply cite the title of the poem in quotation marks.
. . . remember • SAY IT • State you point • EXPLAIN IT • Breakdown your explanation of details • VALIDATE IT • Prove your ideas worthy by providing validating material from the text and/or outside resources. • EDIT IT • Proofread and revise for spelling and grammatical, as well as organization and content
Extra Credit • Turn in an outline to receive extra credit on your paper • Outline is due no later than Thursday, March 25, 2010 (to receive credit) • Outline must imitate the following model…
Outline Format • I. Introduction • a. Explanation/background information • 1. The elements/components of your paper • b. Thesis: The main focus of the paper. The thesis should give your paper perfect focus and direction. The thesis should then be supported throughout the paper • **Write exactly what you intend to use as your actual paper • II. Body Paragraph • a. Topic sentence • i. Main idea of the paragraph • b. Evidence • i. Quotes, research, etc. • c. Explanation • d. Concluding sentence • i. Wrap up this paragraph and lead into the next one
III. Body Paragraph • a. Topic sentence • i. Main idea of the paragraph • b. Evidence • i. Quotes, research, etc. • c. Explanation • d. Concluding sentence • i. Wrap up this paragraph and lead into the next one • IV. Body Paragraph • a. Topic sentence • i. Main idea of the paragraph • b. Evidence • i. Quotes, research, etc. • c. Explanation • d. Concluding sentence • i. Wrap up this paragraph and lead into the next one • V. Conclusion • a. How do all the elements presented in the body paragraphs • come together and support your thesis