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How often have your students been confused by the parts of the standard, academic essay? If you are like me, the answer to this is quite often. Use this product to help reduce the confusion that accompanies essay writing instruction. Here, I have included a number of useful resources:
→A handout for students to use during an interactive lecture (p. 1). The handout is organized around sections of the essay: introduction, body paragraphs, and the conclusion. For each section, students have to record and define what is required (i.e. a hook, a thesis statement, topic sentences, evidence, etc.). Essentially, students fill in the applicable blanks as you teach them.
→Lecture notes for you (p. 2). Use these to lead students through their handout as you explain what each part of the essay features.
→ A ten question multiple choice quiz about essay structure with an answer key (pp. 3-4, 5-6). Use this to reinforce what students learned during the interactive lecture.
You can deliver the interactive lecture in one class period, have students study their notes for homework, and give them the quiz the next day if you like.
★After students understand the basics of the essay, work with them on thesis statements. For this, I have included three resources related to thesis statements, sub-topics, and body paragraphs:
These organizers teach students to construct meaningful thesis statements and create organized essays from them. These three organizers can be used in sequence during a writing unit, or they can be used in isolation to help students sharpen/review specific essay writing skills.
★The first resource, "Establishing Thesis Statements," provides students with a definition of a thesis statement, an example of one, and a list of questions/topics that result from it. The idea is to teach students how a good thesis statement establishes purpose and previews the sequence of ideas in an essay. Students have a chance to draft their own thesis statement here and explore what sort of questions/topics would arise from it.
★The second resource, "Thesis and Sub-Topics," is a graphic organizer that students can use to record their thesis statement and the different topics that result from it. This can be used as a space to brainstorm and record sources that pertain to different sub-topics/paragraphs.
★The final resource, "Organizing Your Essay," requires students to compose a thesis statement and move beyond sub-topics to actually describe body paragraphs and write topic sentences for them. There is also space for students to list sources they have found through the research process.
I consider this product to be "essay writing 101," and I know it can help you teach your students plenty about the basics of essay writing!
★Lastly, check out my other Writing Resources.
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