How should we organize our ideas? c Introduction Conclusion Body Paragraphs
Formula for Intro Paragraphs Sentence #1: The Attention Grabber Introduces the topic of the thesis (without referring directly to it) Options include: Define the idea or concept that is the topic of the paper. Example: "The word 'punk' no longer just means a form of alternative music." Begin with a startling, unusual, or enlightening fact. Example: "One out of every 500 Americans will not make it home tonight.” Begin with an interesting or dramatic quotation. Example: "Nikes 'just do it' slogan has been applied to much more than running shoes.” Start with a question or challenge (can be misused/used too often). Example: "Why do some people wear a mask when they cut their lawns?" DO NOT mention the title/author of the book in the FIRST sentence. That should come later.
Formula for Intro Paragraphs Sentence #2: The Information Adder Adds information about the attention grabber Still general and not referring to the thesis Examples of Attention Grabbers + Info Adders working together: Wouldn’t it be nice to live in a perfect world? In a flawless world, there would be no conflicts, no clashes of character or ideas. During the Great Depression nearly 1 out of 4 working Americans was unemployed. This was a period of intense economic struggle for people all over the country.
Formula for Intro Paragraphs Sentence #3: The Pivot Sentence Pivots or turns the reader toward the thesis The first sentence that hints about our thesis, usually by using a key word from the thesis Examples: Wouldn’t it be nice to live in a perfect world? In a flawless world, there would be no conflicts, no clashes of character or ideas. In our world, however, every situation has the opportunity to become a conflict, and we can even see these conflicts in the literature we read. During the Great Depression nearly 1 out of 4 working Americans was unemployed. This was a period of intense economic struggle for people all over the country. These struggles were exemplified in the themes of the literature from that era.
Formula for Intro Paragraphs Sentence #4: The Set-Up Sentence Transitions directly to the thesis, connecting the topic or idea of the grabber to the point made by the thesis. Includes title of book (italicized!) and author’s name Examples: During the Great Depression nearly 1 out of 4 working Americans was unemployed. This was a period of intense economic struggle for people all over the country. These struggles were exemplified in the themes of the literature from that era. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck shows through his characters how we can help one another through rough times.
Formula for Intro Paragraphs Sentence #5: The Thesis Statement Last sentence of intro paragraph Statement that answers the essay prompt Includes argument that your paper will work to prove
Sample Intro Paragraph During the Great Depression nearly one out of four working Americans was unemployed. This period of intense economic struggle caused people all over the country to leave their homes and families in search of work. These struggles are exemplified in the literature of that era. John Steinbeck’s novella, Of Mice and Men, deals with many characters who face the effects that isolation can have. The characters of Candy, Crooks, and Curley’s wife demonstrate the theme of how isolation can lead to loneliness in this classic novel.
Where does it all go? general specific Info Adding Sentence Set-Up Sentence (book title and author) Thesis statement Attention Grabber Pivot Sentence
Conclusion Paragraph Your conclusion paragraph will do the opposite, going from specific general Specific General
Formula for Conclusion Paragraphs 1.Restate Thesis: Reflects the knowledge learned in the essay using new words. 2.TWO Implication Sentences Reflect on how your topic relates to the book as a whole, give your opinion of the novel’s significance, or connect back to your creative opening. It should relate to all people and thus, be universal. 3.Concluding Sentence: Final sentence of essay that leaves the reader with a powerful thought using strong words. **TIE BACK TO YOUR GRABBER**
Transition Sentences A transition sentence improves the fluidity of your essay by creating a bridge between your body paragraphs (in the CS or TS) Try starting your transition sentences with in addition in conjunction despite although even though or another transition word/phrase. This forces the sentences to contain two ideas!
Transition Sentence Example TS #1: Paul frequently attempts to forget about Billy’s death. CS #1: (functions as the transition to body paragraph #2) Although Paul attempts to conquer his fear, he still cannot forget the horrors of death and war. TS #2: Paul is traumatized by Billy’s unexpected death.
Sample Conclusion Many of Steinbeck’s characters reflect how leading a lonely life results in feeling isolated. Candy faced unjust isolation because of his age more than anything. Crooks faced an equally unjust isolation due to his ethnicity. However, both men were still part of the ‘ranch’ life in a way Curley’s wife could never be. Her isolation from society led to her seeking attention from the wrong person, Lennie, and ultimately led to her death. The difficult and isolated times of the Great Depression certainly provided John Steinbeck with a rich background to explore this theme.