The Multi-paragraph Essay Jane Schaffer Writing Method
Essay • A piece of writing that gives your thoughts (commentary) about a subject. All essays you will write in this class will have at least 4 paragraphs; an introduction, 2 body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Thesis • A general sentence with a subject and an opinion (commentary) • Example: Australiais the best country of all for vacation.
Concrete details (CD) • Specific details that form the backbone or core of your body paragraphs • Facts, specifics, statistics, examples, descriptions, proof, evidence, quotations, paraphrasing
Commentary (CM) • Your opinion or comments about something • Opinion, insight, analysis, interpretation, personal response, evaluation, reflection • Think of (but don’t write), “This means that….” • “This is important because…” • “This shows that…” • This supports my topic sentence/main idea because…
Possible sentence starters for commentary • Think of (but don’t write), “This means that….” • “This is important because…” • “This shows that…” • “This supports my topic sentence/main idea because…” • “This supports my thesis because…”
Topic Sentence • The first sentence in the body paragraph • It must have a subject and opinion (commentary) for the paragraph. • Does for the body paragraph what the thesis does for the whole paper
Chunk • 1 concrete detail and 2 commentary • Smallest unified group of thoughts 1 CD + 2 CM = Chunk
Concluding Sentence • The last sentence in a body paragraph • It is all commentary • Does not repeat key words • Gives a finished feeling to the paragraph • It leads your reader to the next paragraph
Essay Length • Minimum of 4 paragraphs • Paragraph 1 – Introduction (40 words) • Paragraph 2 – 1st Body Paragraph (100 + words) • Paragraph 3 – 2nd Body Paragraph (100 + words) • Paragraph 4 – Concluding Paragraph (40 + words)
Steps in the Writing Process • Pre-Writing • Shaping the essay • First Draft • Peer Response/Self-Assessment • Revision • Editing and Proofreading • Final Draft
Parts of the essay • Introductory Paragraph • Thesis • Body Paragraph • Topic sentence • Chunk • Concrete Detail • Commentary • Chunk • Concrete Detail • Commentary • Chunk • Concrete Detail • Commentary 5. Concluding Sentence • Conclusion Paragraph
Winter Break • Brainstorm a list of reasons why we should or should not have winter break removed from school calendar.
Introduction & Conclusion • Think of these two paragraphs as funnels, one leading toward the body of your essay, while the other leads the reader away from the body. • Theintroductionbegins with a general approach to the topic and then moves toward the more specific aspect(s) of it • Theconclusionbegins with the more specific aspect(s) and moves toward the general topic of your essay
Introduction "The high cost of living in Tokyo" The Parts of an Introduction • Hook: Can you imagine how much a single day can cost if you live in Shibuya, Tokyo? • Comments, and background: Tokyo is one of the most expensive cities in the world. The prices of things in Tokyo are much higher than in other parts of Japan. Many people living in Tokyo have a difficult time paying for their lifestyles. • Thesis Statement: Tokyo definitely is one of the most expensive cities for many reasons.
Dissecting an Introduction • A "hook" is usually a question or comment that inspires an emotional response from the reader. It should be used to get their interest. • Comments and background give a history or some information regarding the topic. • A thesis statement is the last sentence in the introduction paragraph and it describes what the essay is about.
Conclusion The Parts of a Conclusion • Restate your thesis, but with deeper understanding • Summarize main points • Provide a finished feel by connecting back to the “hook” in your introduction DO NOT provide new information in the conclusion!
Strategies for Ending the Conclusion • Add a quotation or surprising insight from the materials you researched • Suggest a “call to action” or offer a solution to an issue • Bring up questions for further study • Point out consequences of the points you’ve made