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Unit Two, Day 17 - Tuesday, October 17

What we'll do today in class:

Connection to Course goals: The first activity emphasizes both response to a context and the importance of feedback in the revision process. It also emphasizes that they can make different choices to meet the context for Essay 3.


  1. Feedback on homework writing. Exchange your homework assignment with a neighbor. Read through your classmate's writing and respond to the following questions:
  2. List an Audience, Purpose, and Focus for your analysis. Have them use the feedback they received and their own preferences to choose a tentative purpose, audience, and focus. Remind them that they won't be held to these choices, but they need to choose so we can move on in developing a claim. (5 min)
  3. Transition: Because this assignment asks you to analyze hidden messages in TV shows, we're going to spend a bit of time making sure your claims are meeting this expectation.

  4. WTL: Look at your audience description (the audience you'll most likely address) and respond to the following questions…
  5. After they've completed their WTL, have them use what they wrote to look back at their focus and in writing their claim to make sure that they're dealing with messages that wouldn't already be clear to the reader.
  6. Transition: Before you use your choices and the information about what your audience already knows to write an actual claim, let's quickly consider what an overall claim/thesis should do for this essay.

  7. What should a claim do? Here we're working on focusing their essay into a clear and concise claim. Ask students to generate a list of what the thesis for this essay should do. What would a reader need to know in terms of what the essay is trying to accomplish?
  8. Transition

  9. Using your updated information on audience and purpose (and what aspect/message/anxiety you've decided to center on in the show), write a claim that could serve as the thesis for your essay. Be sure to keep in mind what we've discussed above. (5 min)
  10. Transition: Once you have a claim, you've got a focus for your essay. However, any claim typically implies sub-claims that must also be proven. To make sure that we're proving everything a claim implies, we'll now spend a bit of time practicing "un-packing" claims.

  11. Practice "un-packing" claims with sample theses.
  12. After they've practiced unpacking claims, have them write their tentative claim at the top of two half-sheets of paper. Then exchange those two sheets with two classmates, and unpack each others claims.
  13. - What implied claims are there here? What sub-claims would the writer have to prove?

    - Based on those claims, what would you expect in terms of evidence? What types of evidence will the writer have to have to support each claim? (10 min)

    - Once they've unpacked both claims, have them return them to their writers and have everyone look at the feedback they received in terms of what sub-claims they'll have to prove and what people will expect in terms of evidence to prove those claims.

    Transition: Now that you have the focus for your essay and we've seen how to un-pack claims and consider expectations for evidence, let's go ahead and take a look at how this would actually take shape by analyzing sample essays.

    (NOTE: If you're running out of time, don't analyze the introductions separately. Just do a large-class discussion of the sample essays that includes un-packing the claims and considering the expectations for evidence based on that claim.)

  14. Analyze sample essays for focus, coherence, and use of evidence. We'll start with the introductions of the sample essays to see how expectations are set-up for the rest of the essay.
  15. Analyze introductions to see how Purpose/Audience/Focus are set-up early in an essay.
  16. Transition: Now let's look at how the rest of the essay developed these expectations.

  17. Class Discussion of class asking students analyze the remainder of the sample essays based on the information they found in the introduction.
  18. If time…

  19. Based on your Audience, Purpose, and the thesis you just wrote, begin an introduction for your analysis. Feel free to ask for advice from neighbors while you're writing, or I'll be wandering to provide some assistance and feedback as you write. Keep in mind the goals of an introduction - get the reader's attention, set-up your overall purpose and your topic, lay-out your thesis and essay map, etc. (10-15 min)



Come to conference with your introduction (which should include some sense of your purpose and audience as well as your claim), and possible ideas for evidence


PHG, "Transitions" 301-303 for Thursday.


A draft of Essay 3