Choose one of the following statements and agree or disagree with it in an essay developed by using multiple and extended examples. The statement you decide on should concern a topic you care about so that the examples are a means of communicating an idea; not an end in themselves.
- In happy families, talk is the main activity.
- Grandparents relate more closely to grandchildren than to their children.
- Sooner or later, children take on the personalities of their parents.
Behavior and Personality
- Rudeness is on the rise.
- Gestures and facial expressions often communicate what words cannot say.
- Our natural surroundings when we are growing up contribute to our happiness or unhappiness as adults.
- The best courses are the difficult ones.
- Students at schools with enforced dress codes behave better than students at schools without such codes.
Politics and Social Issues
- Drug and alcohol addiction does not happen just to “bad” people.
Media and Culture
- The Internet divides people instead of connecting them.
- Good art can be ugly.
- A craze or fad reveals something about the culture it arises in.
- The best rock musicians treat social and political issues in their songs.
Rules for Living
- Lying may be justified by the circumstances.
- Friends are people you can’t always trust.
Writing Your Illustration/Example Essay
STEP 1: To get started writing your essay, first pick at least one of the rewriting strategies we learned about in the course: brainstorming, rewriting, journaling, mapping, questioning, sketching. Use your chosen method and gather ideas for your essay. Write down what you do, as you’ll need to submit evidence of your prewrite.
STEP 2: Write a draft of your essay. When drafting your essay:
- Develop an enticing title.
- Use the introduction to pull the reader into your singular experience by introducing the problematic situation.
- Avoid addressing the assignment directly. (Don’t write, “I am going to write about my most significant experience”—this takes the fun out of reading the work!)
- Think of things said at the moment this experience started for you—perhaps use a quote, or an interesting part of the experience that will grab the reader.
- Let the essay reflect your own voice. (Is your voice serious? Humorous? Matter-of-fact?)
- Try to organize the essay in a way that may capture the reader by mixing multiple and extended examples, but don’t string the reader along too much with “next, next, next.”
- To avoid just telling what happens. SHOW your reader what happened describing vivid examples and incorporating testimony. Make sure you take time to reflect on why this experience is significant.
- Review the grading rubric as listed on this page.
- Choose a writing prompt as listed above page.
- Create a prewriting in the style of your choice for the prompt.
- Develop a draft essay according to the following formatting guidelines: (Papers submitted that do not meet these formatting requirements will be returned to you ungraded)
- Minimum of 3 typed, double-spaced pages (about 600–750 words), Times New Roman, 12 pt font size
- MLA formatting (see the MLA Format page as needed)
- Submit your prewriting and draft as a single file upload.
Be sure to:
- Agree or disagree with the prompt statement by using multiple and extended examples.
- Decide on something you care about so that the narration is a means of communicating an idea.
- Develop an enticing title.
- Use the introduction to establish the situation the essay will address.
- Avoid addressing the assignment directly. (Don’t write “I am going to write about…” – this takes the fun out of reading the work!).
- Let the essay reflect your own voice (Is your voice serious? Humorous? Matter-of-fact?).
- Avoid “telling” your reader about what happened. Instead, “show” what happens using active verbs and/or concrete and descriptive nouns.
*If you developed your prewriting by hand on paper, scan or take a picture of your prewriting, load the image onto your computer, and then insert the image on a separate page after your draft.