What does “a focused topic” mean? It could mean: A narrow topic A specific topic A precise topic
“Spring” “Baseball” “My School” Here are some topics that are the OPPOSITE of focused: “Ancient History” “Movies” “Cats” “Homework” “Modern Music” “Volleyball”
Don’t write about this: “Ancient History” Write about this: “Religious significance of Egyptian Mummification” “Modern Music” “Seattle Origins of the Grunge Movement” “Cats” “The Function and Uses of Retractable Claws” “Weather and History” “How Winter Derailed the Nazi Invasion of Russia”
The first paragraph must introduce the topic and the point the writer wishes to make about it. But what about the body of the paper?
The body: Source of in-depth information In the body of the paper, a good writer offers the readers more than just general statements. interesting information Convincing arguments Important evidence Interesting Anecdotes (Very short stories that support the point) Their readers get :
With the divorce rate in America, young people should be very careful about starting dating relationships. Making decisions should be done very carefully. A student should examine all the options before choosing a college. general statements concrete examples Belong in the introduction.make the body.
general statements concrete examples Families often fight when confined in a car for long periods. Our family drove from Minneapolis to Yellowstone Park in the summer of 1997. It began well enough, but my sister, who was six at the time, had to stop for bathroom breaks every half hour. In my father’s face, I could physically see his temper growing thinner and thinner. First, his fingers began tapping on the wheel….. Belong in the introduction.make the body.
Not only do their readers get details instead of generalizations, they also get better information. Sharks can be very dangerous. They have been known to attack humans. Sharks live in the oceans. Sharks Suppose the topic you have chosen is “Sharks”. Imagine you are going to sit down and quickly make up a pre-write in the form of a list. A shark’s mouth is full of sharp teeth. What pieces of information might be on this list?
Now let’s do a little research. Let’s make a pre-write list of the information we find.
Traditional Hawaiian cultures honor sharks as ancestors. Sharks may be eaten as soon as they are born, if their mother can catch them. A shark cannot shed a tear, or even blink.
Both prewriting lists had three facts. Was one set of facts more interesting?
“Sharks live in Oceans.” Who wrote this stuff?!?! The second pre-write contained a higher quality of information. “Sharks have sharp teeth.” “Sharks are dangerous” This is pretty obvious material. No duh! Really? Wow!