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1 Name:_________________
Step By Step Writing Compiled by Karadean Grayson from Step Up To Writing by Maureen E. Auman Edited by: _______________

2 The Five Elements of Expository Writing
Organization is the key. Topic sentences and thesis statements are the heart. Transitions are the glue. Examples, evidence, and explanation are the meat. Conclusions tie it all together.

3 Organization is the KEY.
Pattern: A Train or A Stop Light Engine = Topic =GREEN Cars = Reason/detail/fact=yellow Logs=explain/example/detail = red Caboose= return/restate topic/conclusion = green

4 Topic sentences and thesis statements are the heart.
State the subject. Tell the reader what will be proved or explained.

5 Topic Start with a topic. The topic is the engine.
The topic is the main idea of the paragraph or story.

6 14 Methods for Writing a Topic Sentence (or Thesis Statement).
1. Occasion/Position Statements 2. Power (number) statements 3. However statements 4. And, But, and Or Statements 5. A Few Good Prepositions 6. To, Plus a Verb 7. The List Statement 8. Get their Attention 9. A Rhetorical Question 10. Side by Side Statements 11. Semicolon Topic Sentence 12. Two Nouns and Two Commas 13. Using a Quotation 14. Adding the Blues

7 Practice finding and writing topic sentences.
Name:_________________ Practice finding and writing topic sentences. Use a text book and identify the topic sentence of the first paragraph of a chapter or section. Can you decide what type of topic sentence it would be? (Refer to the 14 ways to write a topic sentence.) Edited by: _______________

8 1. Occasion/Position Statements
An Occasion/Position Statement is a complex sentence and begins with a subordinating conjunction. The Orange/Purple sentence. An occasion is the first part of the topic sentence. The occasion introduces your reason for writing. An occasion can be any event, problem, idea, solution, or circumstance that gives you a reason to write. The occasion is the dependent clause in the complex sentence.

9 Occasion/Position The position is the second part of the topic sentence. The position states what you plan to prove or explain in your paragraph. The position is the independent clause in the complex sentence.

10 Examples of Occasion/Position
Although my family and I have taken many wonderful vacations, none was more fun and exciting than our camping trip to the Grand Canyon. After I tried out for competitive soccer, I learned that there were several things that I had to do for a good performance. If you have a guinea pig, you must clean its cage. Whenever you have a fire drill, you should follow these instructions. Even if telephones with picture screens were free, I would not want one.

11 Use a magazine or newspaper to search for O/P statements.
The easiest places to find O/P statements are in the advertisements and letters to the editor.

12 List of Subordinating Conjunctions to create Occasion/Position Statements.
In order that If After Since Before So that Whenever As long as As Even though Although Unless While When Even As if Whether Until Where Though Even if Because Wherever As soon as

13 Continue to practice Occasion/Position
Use page 2-41 and 2-43 in Step Up To Writing.

14 2. Power (Number) Statements
A sentence that contains a number word. The number word is the focus of the sentence; it tells your reader that a list of information will follow.

15 Helpful Number Words Two, three, four, several, many, some, a few, numerous, a couple of, a number of, a myriad, various, plenty of

16 Examples of Power Statements
Three cities have serious pollution problems. In the winter I enjoy watching several high school sports. The new recruits learned four important procedures. When my family camps, we always stay at one of our four favorite campgrounds. Like most American cities, Los Angeles is faced with many problems including homelessness, gang violence, and unemployment. The parade was wonderful; two exciting things happened. I enjoy four kinds of music. There are four steps you should follow for a fire drill. There are four steps to clean a guinea pig’s cage.

17 Practice writing Power Statements.
Think of the steps needed to do something. Write a Power Statement that would introduce your explanation.

18 Order in Paragraphs Certain words can help make order clear.
First, next, then, and finally are order words. Use order words with Power Statements to help the reader follow your ideas easier.

19 Practice Order What is the topic sentence of the paragraph?
There are several things to do when you clean a guinea pig’s cage. First, take the guinea pig out of the cage. Put the guinea pig in a safe place. Next, lift up the old newspaper and wood chips. Throw them away. Spread clean newspaper on the bottom of the cage. Then add a new layer of wood chips. Finally, put the guinea pig back into its clean cage. What is the topic sentence of the paragraph? What is the main idea? Every step does not need to have an order word. How many steps are there in cleaning the cage?

20 More practice with order. These steps are out of order
More practice with order. These steps are out of order. Write them in order, as a paragraph. These are the steps for a fire drill. Follow these instructions for a fire drill. Next, form a straight line. Leave the room when your teacher tells you to. First, stand up and push in your chairs. Walk quickly and quietly outside. How to Peel a Banana Pull it down gently. First, take hold of the stem. Then take hold of the next strip at the top. Keep pulling until the strip is all the way down. Pull it down gently, too. Do the same with the other strips.

21 Keep Practicing Power Statements and order words.
Choose one thing to explain to a classmate. How to peel an orange. How to make a telephone call. How to draw a stick person. Tell your instructions to a classmate. Then work together to make your instructions even better.

22 3. However Statements However is one of several conjunctive adverbs that will help you organize your thoughts into a topic sentence or a thesis statement. Use however in the middle of the sentence. You will need a semicolon (;) before the word however and a comma (,) after the word however. This creates a compound sentence. Usually, the first part (independent clause) will be the occasion (reason for writing); the second part (independent clause) will state your position (what you plan to prove or explain).

23 Examples of However Statements
The new rules for the school cafeteria seemed unfair to the students; however, the rules have made the cafeteria a better place to eat lunch. Some of the citizens in Springfield protested when the city council voted to close the old theater; however, one man was able to settle the argument by suggesting a way to rebuild the theater without having to ask the taxpayers for more money. My father is very strict; however, he has good reasons for all of his rules. Ants are very small creatures and may seem insignificant; however, scientists around the world study these insects.

24 Other Conjunctive Adverbs to try:
in fact nevertheless as a result next meanwhile still instead consequently therefore likewise furthermore otherwise

25 4. And, But, Or Statements This method of topic sentences also creates a compound sentence. With the coordinating conjunctions-and, but,or, nor,so,yet,and for- you can easily write a topic sentence. Hint: Use the words BOY FANS to help you remember these conjunctions. B = but O = or Y = yet F = for A = and N = nor S = so Remember: You need a comma before the conjunction.

26 Examples of And, But, Or Statements:
Some people find it difficult to program a VCR, but most will succeed if they just remember to follow these guidelines. Reptiles are all alike because they have backbones, breathe with lungs, and have scales, yet reptiles come in a variety of sizes and shapes. My grandmother likes to help others, so she volunteers at church, at the hospital, and at my school. I enjoy most music, but jazz is my favorite. School boards should not cut art and music programs, nor should they sacrifice the industrial arts electives offered in most high schools.

27 5. A Few Good Prepositions.
See list of prepositions on next slide. Once you have learned to write Occasion/Position Statements and However Statements, try this list. Like the Occasion/ Position list, these words can jog your thinking and push you into a good topic sentence. Not all prepositions will work for your topic. Read your sentence out loud and make your decision once you hear the sentence. Remember that your topic sentence gives your audience a quick glance at your reason for writing and tells the readers what you intend to prove or explain.

28 List: Aboard Under About Underneath Above According to Until Up
Despite Down During For from In In addition to In back of In case of In front of In regard to In spite of Instead of Inside Into On Like near of Off Onto Out Out of Outside Over Past Round Since Through Throughout Till To Toward Under Underneath Until Up Up to Upon With Within Without With the exception of Aboard About Above According to Along with As for Away from Across After Against Along Alongside Among Around Because of By before Behind Below Beneath besides Beside Between Beyond but Due to

29 Examples of “A Few Good Prepositions” statements.
According to Current Events magazine, many high schools have banned pagers. Without my computer my life would be a disaster. With the proper training and the best equipment, high school football players can enjoy the sport and avoid injury. In case of a fire, all families should make an escape plan and practice it. Like most teenagers, my cousin Fred disagrees with his parents on several issues. Since the first Olympics, thousands of athletes have challenged themselves and set world records.

30 A Note: Some of the words on the prepositions list are the same as words on the Occasion/Position list. Words like since, until, before, and after are prepositions if there is no verb (action word). Preposition– After the game there were several fights in the parking lot. Clause – After the game ended, fights broke out in the parking lot. Preposition – Since the first of the year I have improved my grades in math and art. Clause – Since the semester started, I have worked hard to improve my grades in math and art.

31 6. To, Plus A Verb Try using an infinitive to start your paper.
An infinitive is the main verb preceded by the word to. Topic sentences with infinitives are clear and direct. They won’t confuse your reader.

32 Examples: To win at chess players need to master three skills.
To impress her guests at our New Year’s dinner, my aunt created the most incredible culinary surprises. To succeed in business a person must establish clear but realistic goals. To attract customer, the ice cream parlor hired a clown who did magic tricks. To succeed takes more than just a good idea and a dream. To prepare for college, high school students should take several math, science, and English classes. To improve her health, Grandmother made several changes in her lifestyle. To keep in contact with friends and family, many teens invest in pagers.

33 Practice! Write a topic sentence using each of the previous methods.
Use a magazine picture for ideas.

34 7. The List Statement List the categories you will address in your paper. Think of similar endings like ed and ing when you make your list. Do not mix words with phrases or clauses with a series of single words. Keep the list parallel

35 A list of words All college students need money, courage, friends, and encouragement. Joe’s Café offers the best in service, food, and atmosphere. When I set out to buy my new car, I looked for a vehicle that was reliable, safe, and economical.

36 A list of phrases My grandparents prefer to vacation in Mexico, in the Northwest, and in the Bahamas. Problems with the new school include: poor ventilation, small classrooms, inadequate lighting, limited parking. The Smiths love their new home but are having trouble with the garage door and with a new sprinkling system.

37 A list of dependent (cannot stand alone) clauses.
When I found my lost puppy, when I won the trip to Florida, and when I met a group of teachers from Russia, I realized that life is great and full of surprises.

38 A list of independent (can stand alone) clauses
High school graduates can attend community college, they can enroll in state universities, or they can study at private schools throughout the United States. Run for office; join a club; march in the band. Activities like these will make high school more rewarding.

39 8. Get Their Attention A declarative statement using a strong verb- action word.

40 Examples: Children will love the new flavored cereals.
Aunt Susan’s foolproof holiday recipes saved me and impressed my family. Clay’s gas station offers the best service. Fourth grade test scores at Lincoln Elementary soared. The restaurant on Main Street serves the best brunch in town. Teacher’s salaries must be increased.

41 9. A Rhetorical Question This is the kind of question we ask when we want to get someone’s attention, but we do not really expect an answer. You are going to answer the question in your writing.

42 Examples of Rhetorical questions:
What is your school doing to improve test scores? Why can’t college graduates find the jobs they want? How are churches and synagogues meeting the needs of teenagers? What should parents expect from their child’s preschool? How will baby boomers handle retirement? Are you intimidated by the IRS?

43 10. Side by Side Statements
Two simple sentences– one for the occasion and one for the position. Especially powerful if your goal is to put emphasis on your position.

44 Examples of Side by Sides
A little wine may be good. Too much is dangerous. Young children belong in car seats. The car seat belongs in the back, not in the front. Throwing a dinner party is a challenge. Planning ahead can prevent stress. Finances cause stress for many people. Suze Orman’s book, Nine Steps to Financial Freedom, offers practical, helpful advice.

45 11. Semicolon Topic Sentence
Just like a Side by Side Statement; main ideas are connected by a semicolon (;).

46 Examples: The football team deserves the state championship; the players and the coach are talented and dedicated. Buying a new car is exciting; it’s also stressful. All of the major airlines have improved customer service; they have also increased the number of daily flights. Test scores have fallen for the third straight year; administrators are scurrying to find solutions and reverse the trend.

47 12. Two Nouns and Two Commas
When we set off a noun or a noun phrase with commas, we call this an appositive. An appositive does not have a verb; it is simply a noun followed by a description that tells more about the first noun. These sentences help writers put more important or interesting information in to one sentence.

48 Examples: Deckers, a small town nestled in the Colorado Rockies, is a fishing haven for many serious anglers. Snare drums and maracas, percussion instruments, help keep rhythm in music. Two rivers, the Missouri and the Mississippi, are important to the people in Iowa. Ben Franklin, a colonist from Pennsylvania, helped Thomas Jefferson write the Declaration of Independence. The Broncos’ Quarterback, John Elway, set many records during his career.

49 13. Using a Quotation Using the words that are on the Occasion/Position list might help. Once you have mastered this, it will be easy to use However Statements or one of the other methods suggested for your topic sentence.

50 Examples: Although I usually appreciate the advice I receive from my grandmother, I wish that she would follow the advice of Horace: “Whatever advice you give, be short.” If you are tempted to give your best friend advice, at least be aware of the Arab proverb that says, “Never give advice in a crowd.” When I visited my relatives in Michigan, I learned very quickly that the old German proverb, “ Never give advice unless asked,” is true.

51 Practice! Use these quotations in topic statements.
“It takes time to save time.” Joe Taylor “Don’t find fault. Find a remedy.” Henry Ford “There’s only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving and that’s your own self.” Aldous Huxley “An idea is salvation by imagination.” Frank Lloyd Wright “What comes from the heart, goes to the heart.” Samuel Taylor Coleridge

52 14. Adding the Blues The Blues are those sentences that give interesting extra information. They are the sentences that precede the topic. We say they “decorate the topic.” They give the reader the background information they need to better understand the paragraph.

53 The Blues In 1955, African-Americans who lived in the South and rode the bus were required to sit in a special part of the bus behind the “whites only” section. When Rosa Parks, an African-American woman from Montgomery, Alabama, broke this rule, she showed courage and determination. First of all, it took courage to… Next,…

54 More Blues During the Industrial Revolution some children were forced to work in order to help their families pay for food and lodging. Children worked long hours in factories where they did work that was dangerous. The conditions in the factories sometimes caused diseases. Fortunately, from 1830 until the early 1900s many laws were passed in England and the United States to protect child workers. One law said… Another law… A third law…

55 Practice Writing Topic Sentences
Practice Writing Topic Sentences. Write an Occasion/Position Statement or a Power Statement for each topic. Family pets Friends High school sports Drinking and driving Professional athletes Your hometown Roller skating The movies Courage Music

56 Add Some Blues Think of some background information that would help introduce your topic. Add a blue statement to each of the topic sentences.

57 Blue Example The past few years have been slow economic times for many states around the nation. During difficult economic years school districts often need to reduce costs; many districts find that eliminating high school sports could save a lot of money. High school sports have several important roles to play in a student’s well rounded education.

58 Just The Ticket! Practice topic sentences every day.
Write a topic sentence about each content area you study every day this week.

59 Completing The Paragraph
After the engine of a train we find any number of cars carrying a variety of cargo items. Complete your paragraph by adding the cars and cargo, or sometimes called the “yellows” and “reds”.

60 Reason/ Detail/Fact The “Yellows” say slow down!
Give a reason, detail or fact. Use a transition. These sentences are the train cars. The main ideas or key concepts.

61 Transitions are the glue.
In each paragraph the main ideas (key concepts) are introduced by a transition. The transitions are sometimes in the middle of the sentence. Do not use the words is, was,or were right next to the transition. Vary the transitions. It is easy to read a paragraph that has clear transitions. Readers will appreciate papers that you write using transitions.

62 Introduce main ideas. Example:
On Saturdays I like to do two things. First, I like to sleep in because I usually stay up late on Friday night. I also like to take walks in the park with my family and our dog, Jake. Saturdays are great!

63 Vary & Bury Put some transitions in the middle of sentences.
Use a variety of transition words.

64 A List of Transitions One way – Another way First – Another – Next
First – Second – Third The first – The second One – Then – Another One – Also First of all – In addition – Finally One – One other – Along with – Last One example – Another example A good – A better – The best One - Another – Finally First of all – Second – Last First of all – Next – The final First of all – The next - Another First – In addition – Equally important

65 Other methods for making a transition in your writing.
Repeating words Using synonyms

66 Study and Practice Search for transitions in the writing samples.
Search for transitions in the book you are reading for independent reading.

67 Complete with cargo! The cargo is what the train is delivering.
Complete your paragraph with some cargo or sometimes called the “reds”. The real “meat” of your paragraph.

68 Examples, Evidence, and Explanation
The “Reds” say Stop! Explain. Give an example. Show evidence.

69 Explain! Explain! Explain!
Nothing is more important than the quantity and quality of explanations you include in your writing. Always ask yourself if you have enough reds. Check to see if you have included specific examples or presented enough evidence.

70 The Red E’s Information to back up your reasons, details, or facts.
Examples Explanations Evidence Events Experiences Everyday life Effective illustration Elaboration Expert opinions E’s support your topic sentence. E’s make your writing interesting and believable.

71 Practice! Use some writing samples.
Underline the topic sentence green. Underline the main ideas yellow. Underline the example/explanations red. Underline in black any sentences that don’t belong in the paragraph.

72 Conclusions! Go Back! Remind the reader of your topic.
The caboose on the train is similar to the engine.

73 Conclusions tie it all together.
Instead of just stopping and writing THE END, consider: Restating your position; reminding your readers of your topic. Don’t just copy the topic. Use synonyms! Summarize your paragraph. Encourage them to take action. Convince the readers of your position. Challenge them to think about the issue.

74 Tie it Up! If it fits, try using one of these words or phrases in the final sentence: In fact Truly Obviously Definitely Clearly Surely Certainly To sum up In conclusion Avoid phrases such as As I have said As I proved As you can see Vary the sentence structure. If your topic sentence was an O/P statement, use a simple statement in the conclusion. If you started with a Power Statement, make your conclusion an O/P.

75 More on Conclusions Using a quotation in a conclusion is a plus. Make sure the quotation supports the position. Imitate the professionals, teachers, or fellow students. Listen to and look for good conclusions. Check out newspaper and magazine articles to see how their introductions and conclusions go together.

76 Accordion Paragraphs Vary paragraph length by adding a variety of Yellows and Reds. Using p.2-88 in Step Up To Writing, an explanation of Accordion Paragraphs, practice different lengths of paragraphs.

77 Presentation! Have you ever heard, “It’s all in the way it is presented!” Mastery comes with “polishing” your paragraph to a “shine”. Striving for the BEST!

78 Finishing Touches! Neat paper Check Spelling Know your audience
Neat handwriting Evaluate yourself with a rubric Skip a line when writing on notebook paper. Revise! Revise! Revise!

79 Finishing Touches: A few revising tricks to try!
ABC Your Paragraph: Write a basic paragraph. Try making the paragraph better by using the alphabet. You may start any place and work up or down the alphabet. Start each sentence with the next letter of the alphabet.

80 “To Be” or “Not To Be” “To Be” Verbs: Write a basic paragraph. Is
Circle all of the “To Be” verbs/verb phrases. Replace with a strong action verb. Is Am Are Was Were Be Being been

81 Examples of “To Be” or “Not To Be”
Weak—Jamie is helping her mom at the restaurant. Better– Jamie joins her mother at the restaurant every day after school to greet and serve customers. Weak– Karen is a baker. Better-- Karen creates beautiful cakes for weddings and other special events.

82 Analyze a Paragraph 1 He 4 is 2 I 6 Was 3 5 Ran The Were Some Found
Sentence First word in the sentence Number of words in the sentence verb 1 He 4 is 2 I 6 Was 3 5 Ran The Were Some Found Will 7

83 Further Analysis At a glance you quickly realize that this student has a weak paragraph. All of the sentences are about the same length. There are very few strong action verbs Three of the sentences start with the same word.

84 One Perfect Sentence Burrito fold your paper. (fold it in thirds).
Write one sentence. Read it and revise it on the next part of the paper. Read it out loud and rewrite it for a perfect sentence.

85 Perfection and Beyond! Once you have mastered a perfect paragraph you are ready to expand to essays and other multi-paragraph writing. An essay is just a paragraph that has been s t r e t c h e d.

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