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Veterans of foreign wars and northwood 7th grade

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1 Veterans of foreign wars and northwood 7th grade
Patriot’s Pen Essay Contest Show the title slide. Give kids a few seconds to read it. Tell the class that they will write an entry for this contest in the next three days. It is a requirement for this class. If they ask, you may tell them that the other LA7 classes are writing this as a optional assignment. Veterans of foreign wars and northwood 7th grade

2 What is it? Every year the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) sponsors a nationwide essay contest for middle school students. They offer prizes at the local level, the state level, the regional level, and the national level. Prizes range from $50 to $5,000. For many years Northwood 7th graders have participated in this essay contest. We have had several local and state winners from our school. Show this slide. Read it to the class.

3 Who can participate? The contest is open to any 6th, 7th or 8th grader in public, private, or home school. There is no charge to enter. Read this slide to the class.

4 Where should I turn in my essay?
Language Arts teachers at Northwood will collect essays from their students. We will then pass the essays on to the representatives of the local VFW Post who will judge them. Read this slide to the class.

5 When does the contest take place?
Your essay is due to Mrs. Paul on Monday, October 28, 2013 We will print them in class that day, so you don’t have to print your final copy at home. Read this slide to the class.

6 How long should my essay be?
It cannot be less than 300 words or more than 400 words. The essays MUST be typed with no color and no graphics. Every word counts regardless of length. Your title words are not included in the word count. Do not put your name directly on your essay. You will attach a separate entry form with your name on it. Read this slide to the class. Ask if there are any questions so far.

7 Can I get help with my essay?
Your teacher, parent, or other adult can check your essay for punctuation, grammar, and spelling… …but they cannot help you with the content of your essay. All the ideas in your essay must be your own. Read this slide to the class.

8 Why are we doing this? You are expected to learn to produce “clear and coherent writing” and to “strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying new approaches.” You will know you are successful when you have a finished essay that you are proud of, one that you have carried through the writing process of prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.

9 “What Patriotism Means to Me”
What is the essay ABOUT? Every year the essay prompt is set by the national level of the VFW. In the prompt is: “What Patriotism Means to Me” Tell students that they are going to talk about a lot of important ideas in the next few minutes. They don’t have to take notes, however, because a copy of this PowerPoint is attached to Skyward and they can open it at home any time they want to…in fact, opening it at home tonight will be part of their homework. Have students get out their journals, however, so they can write down their own ideas. Tell them to copy the prompt onto a clean page in their journals. Tell them that the class is now going to brainstorm some ideas for their essays. First, it will help to define some terms. Go to the next slide.

10 Prewriting: Make a “Quick List”
Get out your writing journal

11 Number your page from 1-10. Skip lines.
1-2 Memories of times when you were proud to be an American 3-4 Memories of times when you were not so proud to be an American 5-6 Memories of special patriotic holidays—4th of July, Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day, Presidents’ Day, Martin Luther King Day, Thanksgiving 7-8 People you consider patriots 9-10 Symbols of patriotism

12 Write a kernel essay: A PATRIOTIC MEMORY
Choose one memory from your quick list. Number your paper 1-5, skipping lines. I’m going to ask you questions about your memory. Write your answer as simply as you can, using complete sentences. Before we begin, take a few minutes to think about your memory. Let it replay in your mind like a little movie.

13 Where were you? What happened first? What happened next? What happened last? What lesson about patriotism did you learn?

14 Rights if you are accused of a crime
prewriting Here are some basic values, rights, and freedoms we enjoy in American that you might want to consider: Right to bear arms Rights if you are accused of a crime Freedom of Religion Freedom of Speech Freedom of the Press Freedom of Assembly Freedom of Petition Courage Service Honor Liberty Choose two or three that connect with you and write them in your journal. Click through these values one at a time and discuss why these values are important to Americans. Come up with specific examples if you can (as a class). Have students write these words down in their writing journals, skipping a line between each one so that they can write down their own ideas. Tell students to choose two of these and to write down some of their ideas about these values.

15 Write another kernel essay: Patriotism
Review your quick list of patriotic ideas. Keep them in mind as you complete each of these sentence starters: Some people think… And other people think… But I think… What that tells me…

16 Kernel essay #3 Patriotism: A dictionary-like definition
My personal definition The feeling I get from it What others make me think about it An example in society today Another example

17 Kernel Essay #4 What Patriotism meant to me when I was little.
What it meant when I was older. What it means to me now. What patriotism will mean to me when I am grown up.

18 prewriting What values are explained in “The Pledge of Allegiance” that we say everyday? Listen to this comedian’s serious presentation: Ask the class: “Why do we say the Pledge of Allegiance” every morning before school? “Have you thought about just what it means?” Tell the class: “Red Skelton was a famous comedian in the 1960s and 1970s. He had his own television show on Sunday nights during ‘prime time.’ Usually his standup routines were very funny. But every once in a while he was serious. Watch this routine where he explains what the Pledge really means.” Watch the video link. Afterwards, direct students to write in their journals about what the pledge means to them.

19 prewriting You may discuss all of these ideas with other students or adults (such as your parents), but they cannot tell you exactly what to write or how to write about them. Read this slide to the students.

20 DRafting Look over the kernel essays you have written. Choose the one that interests you the most. Think about ways that you can expand it into a full essay for the contest: Can you add… …talking …physical feelings …descriptive …action …emotions details …information …comparisons DO IT!

21 Feedback Print a copy of your essay. Take it home and ask a parent or other adult to read it. Ask for their suggestions and feedback. Ask them to sign it. Bring it back on Monday.

22 revisions RADaR Revision
What are words you can REPLACE with more interesting ones? What are ideas you can ADD to make it more complete? What are things you can DELETE because they are unnecessary or unhelpful? How can you REORDER your ideas to make them have more flow and be more clear?

23 proofreading Use the tools in Word to help you make your punctuation and spelling more accurate. --spell check --grammar check --word count --readability statistics

24 Final draft Check over your work one more time to make sure it is exactly the way you want it to be. Print a copy WITH YOUR NAME ON IT for me. Print a copy WITH NO NAME ON IT for the contest. Fill out an entry form and attach it to your essay. Give it all to me and I will pass it along to the VFW.

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