Friday, October 13, 2017

Preliminary Brainstorming for Essay #3

First, look at your writing for the "untranslatable" prompt from yesterday. If you wanted to turn this bit of writing into an essay that incorporates information and some research, what information might you incorporate and where might you go to find this information? Make a brief list in your notebook.

Then, on the notecard I gave you, come up with three ideas for an information essay you might write. They don't have to be brilliant, but try to come up with three ideas for a personal essay incorporating information that enriches the essay in some way.

Then, turn the notecard over and come up with two or more ideas for a personal essay incorporating information that enriches the essay in some way that you would like to read, though you don't see yourself writing on that topic.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Prompt options for Thursday, October 12

If we have less time: 

Think back to the “How do you feel about your name?” prompt you wrote about first quarter. If you were going to write an informational essay on your name and related ideas and questions, what sorts of information might you seek out to incorporate? Make a list.


If we have more time:

Choose a word that you feel is untranslatable. Discuss how this word is significant to you and what you might do to make someone unfamiliar with the word (or with your understanding/use of the word) begin to comprehend its meaning.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Short reading for Wed, and grammar links

For tonight, read How to Avoid Grammar Mistakes: RTFM, Baby by Catherine Prendergrast, a quick essay that will help you with so many of the grammar and usage issues you may have throughout your high school and college careers, and beyond. We'll discuss this in class tomorrow.

A related document you might be interested in: the Uni English departments statement on our philosophy of grammar instruction.

And for all your grammar, punctuation, and usage needs, I recommend Grammar Girl, the University of North Carolina Writing Center's Tips and Tools, and Purdue's OWL. (Feel free to share your favorite grammar and usage site, if you have one, and I'll post those as well.)

The His'er Problem, updated

You are interns for a small online magazine that focuses on language and culture. Your boss wants you to write a casual but informed 600-word piece on gender-nonspecific language in the twenty-first century. It should introduce the basic issue of gender specific language and give a very brief bit of history (feel free to use Anne Fadiman as one historical source), and it should end by offering readers advice on and/or range of options for how to approach gender nonspecific language.
  • Begin by making a list of places where you might find information about this––this can include print and online resources, but also any other information source you could access within a small budget (for example, contacting experts or commenters in any number of fields or areas by phone, email, etc.)
  • Then spend a few minutes trying to find two or more sources to check for basic information that you can use to begin to shape the very first draft of your piece.
  • Create a rough outline for the piece you envision (including references to any information you intend to gather from more time-intensive means like interviews).
  • If you have time, write the first couple of paragraphs.

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Directed writing for Thursday, October 5

First, we'll think a bit about lessons you took away from reflecting on your writing process.  (Including the always important reminder that it's alright to cry, as former NFL player and current Protestant minister Rosey Grier so eloquently sang.)

Then, directed writing. Using reconstructed direct quotation, recreate a conversation where you:

·      Learned something important about your family (or a member of your family) that you didn’t know before
·      Learned something important about a friend that you didn’t know before
·      Figured out something significant about yourself that you weren’t fully aware of
·      Suddenly found yourself liking or respecting someone more, or less.
·      Got some news that either made your day or ruined your day.

Choose two of the options above and write a brief dialogue where you recreate that conversation. Feel free to invent dialogue for yourself and for the other person, but be sure all the dialogue is true to the spirit of the conversation as you remember it. Each dialogue should fill at least one page and no more than two pages of your notebook.