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Week 2: Freshman Composition

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  1. Week 2: Freshman Composition

  2. Quiz on Readings • Analysis and Discussion of Readings • Revising, Editing and Proofreading – What’s the Difference? • Activity – Practice Proofreading • Peer Review Guidelines and Assignments • Peer Review What to Expect Today

  3. Superman and Me - Sherman Alexie • Shooting an Elephant – George Orwell Analysis of Readings

  4. RESERVATION FACTS Altogether, 566 American Indian tribes exist in the U.S.1 The overall living conditions on some reservations have been cited as “comparable to the Third World.” NRC’s Program Partners tend to agree with this.2 Access to jobs is limited on the reservations. Unemployment ranges from 35% to 85%, depending on the community. Overall unemployment for American Indians is about 49%.3 Many American Indians work full-time yet still fall below poverty level. Poverty ranges from 38% to 63% of the population on Navajo, Rosebud, Pine Ridge, Lower Brule, Crow Creek, and other reservations in NRC’s service area. From 30-43% of American Indian children are living in poverty.5 The high school dropout rate for American Indian students is 30 to 70%, depending on the reservation and the state. About 9% of American Indians have a college degree, compared to 19% of their Caucasian peers.6 Analysis of Readings – Superman and Me Source: National Relief Charities http://www.nrcprograms.org/site/PageServer?pagename=press_reservation

  5. Superman and Me - Sherman Alexie • Learned how to read by “reading” Superman comics when he was three years old • Alexie sees himself “saving” lives like Superman saves lives • Superman faces obstacles and overcomes them – so does Alexie • Alexie fights evil – ignorance, stereotypes • Alexie “refuses to fail” – so does Superman

  6. Superman and Me - Sherman Alexie "I refused to fail. I was smart. I was arrogant. I was lucky." • Expectations of Indian children on a reservation - • Indian children were stereotypically supposed to fail in the classroom, and most did. Alexie was smart and the Indians who weren't, ridiculed him. • Those who failed were accepted, Those who excelled weren't. Analysis of Readings

  7. “Shooting an Elephant” By George Orwell

  8. Shooting an Elephant – George Orwell • Written in 1936 • Setting: Burma (present-day Myanmar) in the 1920s, when the country was a province of India. The action takes place in the town of Moulmein in the southern part of the province, called Lower Burma, a rice-growing region on the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea.  • Point of View: First Person • Two dominant characters: the elephant and its exectioner • Mood“cloudy, stuffy morning at the beginnings of the rains.” Analysis of Readings

  9. based on Orwell’s personal experience back when he was working at Burma under the command of the British government. • "I perceived in this moment that when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys (887A)." According to George Orwell, imperialism can cause damages to both the empire and its officers who feel forced to "impress the natives (887A)" thereby losing their freedom, and to the conquered people whose freedom is limited. All of the key elements mainly support the primary theme, through the inclusion of significant details. Analysis of Readings

  10. • Colonialism refers to the rule of one nation over a group of people in a geographically distant land—usually to maintain control of that land’s resources. • Between the 1600s and the 1800s, Great Britain took control of millions of people, their land, and their resources through colonization. • British citizens often went to live in the colonies and to govern over the people there. They were outsiders and in the minority in the colonies. • The colonial subjects were resentful of the British • This essay is set in the British colony of Burma • George Orwell was a British police officer in Burma So…How do you think the Burmese felt about Orwell’s presence in their country? How do you think Orwell might have felt? Key factors to consider

  11. What is it? When is it used? like? irony Write a definition in your own words for irony.

  12. Literary Device/Irony • Irony is a literary device that brings out surprising or amusing contradictions. In verbal irony, the intended meaning of words clashes with their usual meaning, as when Orwell describes the dangerous elephant as “grandmotherly.” • In irony of situation, events contradict what you expect to happen, as when the young Buddhist priests are revealed to be the most insulting toward the British.

  13. Generally, who has freedom—tyrants or the people they oppress? • In this essay, who are the tyrants? • As an agent of the British tyrants, does the reader expect Orwell to be free? • Is he truly free? Interpret the Irony

  14. Generally, who has freedom—tyrants or the people they oppress? (tyrants) • In this essay, who are the tyrants? (the British) • As an agent of the British tyrants, does the reader expect Orwell to be free? (yes) • Is he truly free? (No, he is not free to follow his conscience; the hatred of the Burmese people and his fear of their ridicule control him.) Interpret the Irony

  15. Personal Narrative • Personal narratives usually focus on one key event. Though true, they are told like fictional stories: They have a setting, a main character among a group of characters, a series of events that lead to a climax, a resolution or ending.

  16. About the Selection • Orwell’s essay reveals the ambivalence a person may feel in a position of power. • On one hand young Orwell sympathizes with the Burmese people, on the other hand Orwell, the police officer, is committed to continuing and even defending that oppression.

  17. Orwell’s conflicting attitudes • Orwell’s sympathy for the Burmese • His dislike of imperialism • is desire to leave his job. **these attitudes conflict with his role as police officer, and his bad treatment by the Burmese.

  18. Shooting an Elephant – George Orwell Despite the many reasons to not shoot the elephant such as how it is worth more alive rather than dead, or how he is a “poor shot,” he ultimately falls into the expectations of the Burma people. Against his moral belief he decides to kill the elephant. Theme

  19. Why does the Narrator Shoot?

  20. When an elephant goes wild in a Burmese marketplace, Orwell must act, making decisions more from his confused feeling than from COMMON SENSE, and in the process demonstrating the intense human desire to avoid embarrassment. State of “MUST”

  21. Have you ever acted against your better judgment because you feared what people might think of you? State of “MUST”

  22. Orwell’s stated purpose for writing this essay is “to reveal his own personal dilemma and to reveal the cultural dilemma presented by colonialism itself.” • Think about and answer this question: How does Orwell feel about the issue of British Colonialism? What quotes from the text help us to understand his perspective? Purpose

  23. Personal NarrativesPeer Review and Revising

  24. Rewriting is the essence of writing well—where the game is won or lost.—William Zinsser Revising

  25. Revising means “to see again” – to see your work from a fresh perspective. Revision means “re-visioning” your paper. It is “big picture” work. What is Revising?

  26. Things to consider when revising: • Check to see if any of the ideas need to be developed • See if you need to add further evidence or support. • Revision can require adding material, taking material away, working with the big strokes of the paper. • Revision might involve changing the order of paragraphs and re-crafting topic sentences/transitions. • Revision may demand re-drafting the introduction and checking the conclusion to see what should be brought up to the front of the paper. All of this is when you “re-vision” your paper. What is Revising?

  27. Editing is what you do after you revise. Editing is when you correct any awkwardness that may have occurred in the initial drafting or in revision (revision can be very helpful to the big picture but create problems within paragraphs, for example). • Editing involves considering: • Is the voice clear and confident? • Is there a sense of rhythm and flow in each paragraph, each sentence? • Do the sentences connect up with one another like well-constructed joints? What is Editing?

  28. Summing it Up

  29. Advanced Paragraph Correction • Commonly Confused Words Proofreading – Let’s Practice

  30. Objective feedback to help you revise • Seeing someone’s text from your own perspective • Explaining to them how you ‘see’ it • Being kind, yet honest, in the process Peer Review? What is that? “Another Pair of Eyes”

  31. To start, peer review has many benefits, including: • The ability to get feedback on your writing before the instructor sees it • The ability to see your own strengths and weaknesses after reading and responding to another paper • A greater sense of audience – it is not just your instructor reading your work! • The chance to learn new information from your peers about the subject you may also be writing on • The opportunity for feedback, feedback, and more feedback! The essence of the peer review is your comments – without strong, specific comments, the peer review can often be useless! Why is it Important to Provide Effective Comments during Peer Review?

  32. Imagine you have spent hours on writing a paper for this class, and you are counting on getting a good grade on the final draft. While working on a draft, you see that you have some problems in your writing, but you are not quite sure how to fix them. Who is one of your best resources? Think About It:

  33. Not to fear! Help is on the way! Now, imagine you are anticipating getting some really great, specific feedback from your peer reviewer. You go to class, switch papers, wait eagerly for your peer to help edit your work, and alas, you get your paper back. What did he write? Your peers! Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  34. “I liked it.” “It was really good.” “I didn’t like your thesis.” Does this feedback help you fix your writing problems? Probably not. It is not specific enough. Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  35. As a peer reviewer, you can't just say, "I liked it," or "I didn't like it." Instead, you want to give the writer information that will really help to improve what the writer has written. What is important to remember is that while you should not be harsh or personal, you should be honest. Saying something works when it really does not will not help anyone.

  36. - Vague Comments - General, but Useful Comments - Specific, Directive Comments In order to make effective comments on a peer review, you want to make SPECIFIC, DIRECTIVE comments. Most Effective Least Effective Three Types of Comments Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  37. Comments that are full of generalities, providing little or no specific direction for revision and/or comments that simply praise or disagree with the writing Example: “Try to revise the whole second page” or “I liked it” or “I do not really like this part” Think about it: what do comments like this really tell a person about their paper that will help them REVISE? Nothing. Vague Comments: Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  38. Comments that are too general but may provide some direction for revision Example: “I don’t like your introduction. Maybe describe the topic of public writing better.” A general, but useful comment is slightly better than a vague comment because it narrows what works (or does not work) to a specific area of the paper, as well as offering a specific suggestion. We can take this a step further, however, by providing a specific, directive comment. General, but Useful Comments Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  39. Comments that not only point out a specific problem area of the paper, but also offer the writer a reason why the change is needed and a specific direction for revision. Example: “I do not think the introduction fully describes the topic of public writing in a way all readers will understand, which is necessary if you are going to fully analyze the topic in the next few paragraphs . Maybe you could use a quote that really defines public writing from a source, or you could expand on your first two sentences (which I have underlined in your paper).” Note that this comment points out a specific spot for improvement (the introduction) and states what exactly is wrong with it Note that this comment tells the writer why the change is needed A Specific, Directive Comment Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  40. In the following pairs, determine which of the two choices is the most effective comment: • “This is disorganized!” • "This section discusses both animal-rearing conditions and experimental methods, but the two are mixed together, making it difficult to focus on your points. Could you separate each into its own paragraph?” • “How are these references relevant?” • “The background and references given in paragraph 2 don't seem directly relevant to your thesis. I think we need references that give facts on the dangers of public writing specifically rather than references that explain the extensive history of blogging and its positive effects.” • “Your thesis is unclear.” • “I am having trouble understanding your thesis. The thesis needs to be clear so that the reader is sure of the position you are going to take in the rest of the paper. Could you state specifically the stance this paper will take on gun control?” Pop Quiz!

  41. Remember, the best peer review comments include a specific statement of where an improvement needs to be made, why it should be changed and one-two suggestions for the writer in fixing the weakness!

  42. Read the writer’s essay carefully – just skimming the paper is not enough to really help the writer. • Be positive. Point out strengths as well as weaknesses, and be sensitive in how you phrase your criticism (“Could you clarify this section?” rather than “Your organization is a mess.”) • Be honest. Don’t say something works when it doesn’t. You’re not helping the writer if you avoid mentioning a problem. • Be specific. Rather than simply saying a paragraph is “confusing,” for example, try to point to a specific phrase that confuses you and, if possible, explain why that phrase is problematic. • Focus on one or two major areas for revision – it is not your job to completely edit the paper, but instead to focus on major flaws and offer suggestions In order to be an effective peer reviewer, remember to: Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  43. Read the writer’s essay carefully – just skimming the paper is not enough to really help the writer. • Be positive. Point out strengths as well as weaknesses, and be sensitive in how you phrase your criticism (“Could you clarify this section?” rather than “Your organization is a mess.”) • Be honest. Don’t say something works when it doesn’t. You’re not helping the writer if you avoid mentioning a problem. • Be specific. Rather than simply saying a paragraph is “confusing,” for example, try to point to a specific phrase that confuses you and, if possible, explain why that phrase is problematic. • Focus on one or two major areas for revision – it is not your job to completely edit the paper, but instead to focus on major flaws and offer suggestions In order to be an effective peer reviewer, remember to: Source: A Presentation by Erin Trauth, Angela Tartaglia, Richard Ellman, Melissa Jones, and Andrea Dennin for the University of South Florida FYC Program

  44. GROUND RULES/GUIDELINES FOR PEER REVIEW • Read a draft all the way through before you begin to comment on it. • Give yourself enough time to read and respond. • Point out the strengths of the draft. • When discussing areas that need improvement, be nice. Offer appropriate, constructive comments from a reader's point of view. • Make comments text-specific, referring specifically to the writer's draft (NO "rubber stamps" such as "awkward" or "unclear" or "vague," which are too general to be helpful). Ground Rules for Peer Review

  45. The ‘How’ of Peer Review

  46. The ‘How’ of Peer Review

  47. The ‘How’ of Peer Review

  48. The ‘How’ of Peer Review

  49. The ‘How’ of Peer Review

  50. The ‘How’ of Peer Review