10-11 American Literature & Composition

10-11 American Literature & Composition 2017-18 Mondays, 8:30 – 10:25 AM
Instructor: Ingrid Stassi           ingridstassiatcpc@yahoo.com

Homework for the Week of May 1

ONE MORE WEEK!!! You all have done so well! You have no idea how proud I am of each of you!! I hope writing continues to be a part of your lives, one way or another. You are all destined for great things! I set very high standards for you this year, but you kept the pace. I will miss your smiling faces very much!

Bring a breakfasty snack to share for our morning wrap party! Make sure you bring an envelope with your name on it containing your flashdrive. I will mail any items back to you after grading is complete. Seniors: I will have your grades completed before May 13. It will be down to the wire, but I will get it done.

  1. Turn in your novella. You will need to turn in all your planning documents with the text on your flash drive.
  2. Complete your test. The test is open book.
  3. Turn in your Proposal. Make sure your proposal has a title page and includes any Appendices (such as surveys and interview transcripts, catalog pages, glossaries, etc.). Put the proposal on the flash drive with your novella.

Homework for the Week of April 24

  1. Continue working on your novel. Please bring a laptop to class next week to work on your assignments in class.

2. Write 6 times in your journal.

3. Continue working on your Proposal.

4. No word collection next week.

5. I will send you the study guide for your final test tomorrow.

Homework for the Week of April 17

  1. Start drafting the Proposal section of your Proposal. Re-read the section in the chapter about Devising Longer Reports and Proposals. (You will need to copy and paste the link into your browser; let me know if you have trouble) Make sure you use Headings and sub-headings to chunk your information.


2. For each of the following, determine the best type of visual aid for the conditions presented:

a. A stockholder’s meeting with an audience of 500.

b. A board meeting with 10 participants.

c. A classroom oral report on describing a mechanism.

d. A demonstration on emergency care to a group of 25.

e. A sales presentation in a person’s home with 6 attendees.

3. Continue working on your novel. Your novel needs to be at least 5 chapters. A Prologue and Epilogue can count as a chapter, but only if it is the same length as a chapter.

4. 5 journal entries.

5. Word collection.

Homework for the week of Apriil 10

  1. Continue working on your novel. It is due the last day of class.

2. Write 4 entries in your journal this week.

3. Continue with your word collection.

4. Finalize your Proposal topic. You must have a viable solution in order to continue. Make sure you run it by me first. If you have finalized your topic, you are good to go.

5. Start drafting the Problem/Background section of your Proposal. Use the examples in the Chapter from last week as your guide. The Background details the problem. You must explain how the problem came into existence or what the cause of the problem is. You can include any of the investigation techniques you used to research the problem and the solution. If there are any costs involved from the problem or any costs associated with the cause of the problem, you can outline them in this section. If the problem is causing other problems, then you need to detail those problems.

6. You can also start formulating any surveys or interview questions that you are going to use. If you are going to interview people about your proposal topic, you will need to start setting up those appointments. There are really only 3 more  Mondays and Thursdays in which this will be viable, so don’t delay!

Homework for the Week of April 4

  1. If you did not read the chapter for last week about Writing a longer Report, then you need to read it this week and take notes. Also, look in your email box for the link to the chapter about Writing Professional Papers. Emailing the link seemed to work better last week.

2. Choose a topic for your proposal. Here are some ideas for topics that would work for your church, CPC or possibly an organization you belong to (remember you must submit your topic to me for approval before you get started):

ON CAMPUS or at church

New system of registration Bible study group                                          New equipment                           
student duties to help the teachers with school chores                            New safety procedures        Healthier selections on the snack cart                           
Service projects                                                        More tables in the study hall           Using technology in the classroom
special interest clubs violence protection Jogging/exercise group
social organization tutoring for struggling learners mentor program
SAT prep for high school improved facilities             new student orientation

  3. Write your Introduction for your Proposal, including your Purpose and Scope.

4. Find 5 online professional journals. Remember: Google is your friend!

5. Of the 5online professional journals  that you find, find the instructions to authors for 3 of them. You will upload the links to the journals and also the link to the page with the instructions on a flash drive or send them to me by email so I can easily access them.

6. In the chapter link that I send you, reformat the outline following the instructions for Exercise #3.

7. Rewrite the thesis statements following the instructions for Exercise #4 in the chapter I send you.

Homework for the Week of March 27

You all rocked your interviews today! I am so proud of you for preparing your resumes and recommendations and preparing  for your interviews!! The interviewers had nothing but good things to say about all three of you! This is one proud teacher!!!

So, here is your homework for the week:

  1. Finish your incident reports. This is due on Monday.

2. Read the following chapter and take notes, paying particular attention to the section on proposals. The notes you take will be a homework grade. (you may have to copy and paste the link into your browser; if you have any trouble with it, let me know).


3. Write 2 entries in your journal.

4. Continue with your word collection

Homework for the Week of March 20

  1. Continue working on your novels.

2. Complete 1 journal entry

3. Continue working on your word collections.

4. Prepare for your mock interview next week. Make sure you dress appropriately. You may bring a change of clothes if you are going to be at CPC for most of the day. Make sure you practice answering and asking questions. Bring a nice, clean copy of your resume and your references. Place your documents in a folder, so they remain nice and wrinkle free. If you want me to look at your resume one more time, you can email it to me and I will take a look at it. I will put it at the top of my homework queue.

5. Write an incident report  on a real or imaginary business/industrial accident for your “employer.” Suitable subjects are damaged equipment, brief fire, broken merchandise, minor burns or sprains, collapsed shelving, broken windows or doors, and so forth. Write a concise description of the incident or accident. Next, write a sequential analysis of the cause. Follow this with a review of the results, and, finally, present your recommendations to prevent the incident from recurring. (Optional) Include graphics of the location and cost breakdowns. You will have 2 weeks to write this.

6. Re-write this biased paragraph to remove the opinionated language:

A minor accident occurred on the Data Storage Department recently. One of the departmental technicians carelessly overturned a cup of coffee on an expensive copy machine, which resulted ina massive short circuit when the machine was turned on. Luckily, there were no personal injuries.

Homework for the Week of March 6

  1. Make the editing changes to your resume. After you enter your editing changes, look at your resume again and check for typos and other errors.

2. Write a cover letter to the Westbrook Law and Associates. The contact person at the law firm is Landon Westbrook. The address is 1234 Main Street, Suite A, Houston, TX 77477. You are applying for an internship position.

3. Continue working on your novel. It is due the last day of class, May 8.

4. Work on your word collection

5. No journal entry.


Homework for the Week of February 28

  1. Draft your resume. We will look at your resumes next week during class to edit and revise.

2. I have finished the instruction for novel organization. Now is the time to start pounding the keys to type it up. Make sure that you are keeping up with all the organizational character sketches and scene charts as you go. These will be due with your novel draft on May 8. I will keep posting reminders.

3. Continue with your Word Collection.

4. You are writing in your journal 7 times this week. Here are some prompts:

How do you feel when someone hurts your feelings and what do you do about it? Do you seek revenge? Do you forgive them? Do you talk behind their back? Do you never speak to them again? Explain.

What would you do if a friend became angry at you for some reason?

When you have first met someone, and that person does not give you a very good first impression, how do you handle it?

What would you say to a friend who confronts you if they have found out that you have talked about them behind their back?

If you have offended someone, but you didn’t know it, what would you like for the offended person to do? Would you want them to come speak to you in person to explain or apologize? Or would you rather they stay silent? Or would you rather hear about the offense from a third party that the offended has spoken to?

What if a friend took something from you? What would you do?

How do you think society as a whole exhibits moral behavior?

Do you ever think about how a person feels once you have sought revenge?

Homework for the Week of February 20

  1. Continue working on your novella. This week’s ongoing task is to expand your scenes into multiple paragraphs. Add any interesting dialogue that you can think of to your scenes. A scene can be anywhere your character is. If you have already expanded some scenes, you don’t have to expand them anymore, unless you want to add some dialog to it. Only expand the scenes that are very short. Let me know if you have any questions.
  2. Rewrite the body of the following complaint letter:

Dear Sir:

In reference to your lousy iron which I purchased recently, I want my hard-earned money back. If you don’t refund me the price in full, I beg to inform you that I will take legal action. It spews water all over the clothes I iron, scorches things even on a low setting, will not stand up on the base, and the plug broke the last time I plugged it in. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to call me. I am appalled at the workmanship of this piece of junk. Get with it!


4. Write buffers in the following blunt, negative response statements:

a. We cannot send you the items you ordered because you did not enclose return postage.

b. We’re sorry to inform you that we cannot hire you at this time.

c. I must say no to your request for a writing seminar in June.

5. Write an invitation letter to someone to make a 20 minute speech at your annual kickoff meeting of a special interest organization. Make up all the detail that the invitee will need to know.

6. Write a congratulatory or thank you letter. Some suggested topics are congratulations to a friend who has been hired or promoted with a professional award, completed a degree or other special training, been elected to public or organizational office, or opened up a business. Thank you letter topics might be a response to a letter of recommendation, a letter of appreciation to a teacher or counselor whose advice you followed, to a hotel or restaurant which hosted a group function or to a person who directed some business opportunity your way.

7. Write the third installment of a collection letter. Some suggested topics are late dues to a club or organization, late payment for a service you rendered or late payment for an automobile, credit account or bank loss.

8. Continue with your word collection.

9. Write in your journal 6 times.



Homework for the Week of February 13

  1. Novel – At this point, if you feel like you want to take a break from all the organizing and writing of the novel, you can take a break for a week. If you don’t feel you need to take a break, then you can begin working on the scenes spreadsheet/table/document that we talked about in class today. Each of your scenes needs description. Description is very important to the novel. Wherever your characters go, is a scene. use your senses to write a description and also the question words who, what, when, where, how and why. Use a spreadsheet, a table or some other document to keep track of your scenes as a quick reference.
  2. Write an inquiry or request letter to a company or other organization in response to an advertisement or article in a professional journal. Ask at least four technical questions about a product or service. Review the writing strategies which will motivate a quick response. Use proper formatting and the techniques we learned in class today.
  3. Write in your journal 5 times this week.
  4. Continue with your word collection.

Homework for the week of February 6 – Week 20

This is a light homework week.


  1. Write 4 entries in your journal.
  2. Continue with your word collection.
  3. Continue working on your character descriptions as new characters emerge in your novel.
  4. Start working on character charts, using a spreadsheet or a table. This will be useful when you are writing your draft and you need a quick reference for one of your characters.
  5. You can start writing your draft if you want to and you don’t think it will be too much work for you along with your other studies, but make sure you keep up with the other organizational things.

Homework for the week of January 30 – Week 19

  1. Write in your journal 3 times this week.

2. Continue with your Word Collection.

3. Expand your plot  synopsis by expanding each paragraph from what you have written into a full page. So that means the paragraphs you have will each become a full page.

4. Keep working on your character synopses. Write a synopses every time you come up with a new character. it is important to keep up with this! this is the one thing you don’t want to get behind on.

5. Don’t forget the process analysis is due next week.

6. Read On Writing Well Chapter 25. (I think we are done with Elements of Style. I will be asking you some questions about it on your next test)

Homework for the week of January 23

  1. Write another one-page description of a major character (if you have one) and a half-page description some of the other important characters
  2. Write 2 journal entries.
  3. Continue with your Word Collection.
  4. Read Elements of Style pages 78-81.
  5. Read On Writing Well Chapter 19.
  • Classify the following process analysis subjects as historical (H), scientific (S), mechanical (M), natural (N),or organizational (O).
  • How earthquakes occur
  • Changing a tire
  • How the liver functions
  • Making pennies
  • How (your state) became a state
  • How intravenous fluids are administered
  • Evaluating a teacher
  • How digital television developed
  • How labels are printed on a computer
  1. The following excerpt is from a process analysis of the development of black-and-white film. Rewrite it to eliminate commands, the pronouns you and your, and literary language. Use third person subjects and indicative mood verbs in a consistent active or passive voice.

In the first step, loading the film into the roll, you attach the film to the developing reel. Place the end of the film into the notch, like a little tooth, at the end of the reel. Wind the entire roll onto your reel. Next, you place the reel into the developing ttank. Snap the top securely into place. You may now turn on your light

  1. You have 2 weeks to write a process analysis. You have 2 options:

Select a subject from the following list and write an  historical or  organizational process analysis. Use the checklist at the end of the chapter to ensure that all requirements are covered. Include graphics (if you know how; this is optional.) and a bibliography in MLA style.


  • Making a clay bowl on a potter’s wheel
  • How the president of a college is selected
  • How the mileage calculator on your car is reset.
  • Recording a program on a specific DVR
  • How women in the U.S. won the vote
  • Maintaining a saltwater aquarium
  • How Social Security was enacted in the United States
  • Selecting automobile insurance


Write a scientific, mechanical, or  natural process analysis of one of the following subjects. Use the checklist at the end of the chapter to ensure that all of the requirements are covered. Include graphics (optional) and a bibliography in the style appropriate to your subject.


  • How the Great Barrier Reef evolved
  • How a sty in an eye develops
  • How gallstones develop
  • How a cell phone works
  • How e-mail is transmitted
  • How the liver functions
  • How digestion occurs
  • How clouds are formed
  • How a DVD is made

Homework for the week of January 16 – Week 17

We missed you Jonathan!

Make sure you keep your eye out in your email for the Study Guide that goes with  the test. The test covers defining terms and Describing Mechanisms. Here is a link to the chapter of the book I use for Defining Terms. The chapter for describing mechanisms is not available.


I hope you all are still willing to talk to my 7/8 grade Language Arts class that meets right after Advanced Composition about what high school is like and how you keep yourselves organized, I would really appreciate it if you could put something together for me. You don’t have to talk for very long. This would be super great!! I found out that most of the class is considered 8th grade, so this confirms that they need a big reality check!

  1. Keep working on your one page character summaries. Last week you wrote a summary on your main character. This week I want you to write about a different character. This may be another main character or it could be your antagonist or a minor character. You can always go back to a character and make changes to your summaries, because your characters will change and grow as you go along. It is better to do this now and as new characters are created than to do this after you have written 500 pages, for example. It is really important to this now and keep it going as you move forward. Even very minor characters need a summary.
  1. I also want you to take the plot summary paragraph and expand it. To do this, I want you to take each sentence in your plot summary paragraph and write a paragraph for each. When you get done, you could use this for a potential book proposal.
  1. Write in your journal 1 time this week.
  1. Continue your word collection.
  1. Read Elements of Style pages 73-78.
  2. Read On Writing Well Chapter 17.
  3. Convert the following paragraph into a set of instructions:

To assemble an ABC vacuum cleaner, connect the hose by inserting it into the opening of the machine by lining up the largest projection on the hose with the largest notch of the opening. Turn the hose to the right to tighten it. By depressing the latch and turning the hose to the left, you may disconnect the hose. To attach the extension wands, cleaning tools, and nozzles, the other end of the hose connects by turning the plastic latch ring on the right hand grip until the outer slot lines up with the inner slot. Pushing your hand down hard onto the wand or tool will push the button projection into the slot. The latch ring must be turned to lock it into place. To remove the wand, tool, or nozzle, the procedure is reversed.

8. Select one of the following subjects and write a simple set of instructions of only 10 to 15 steps, using an Arabic numbering system. Consider the design of your document carefully. Use visuals wherever appropriate. Refer to the chapter checklist at the link I posted above.

  • How to carve a turkey
  • How to tune a guitar
  • How to extinguish a campfire
  • How to hem a pair of pants
  • How to back up data on a thumb drive
  • How to delete a computer file
  • How to take a blood-pressure reading
  • How to change a tire on your bicycle or car.
  • How to select a tennis racket.
  • How to make coffee.
  • How to wash a car.
  • How to care for skates of any kind.
  • How to apply for financial aid.
  • How to replace a lost driver’s license.
  • How to obtain a passport.

Homework for the week of January 9

  1. Create your main character summary sheet. This will be an ongoing project, as you will be creating many characters, but start with your main character. As you develop your characters, you will complete a summary sheet for each. Following are the types of questions you want to answer for your characters:
  • The character’s name
  • A one-sentence summary of the character’s storyline
  • The character’s motivation (what does he/she want abstractly?)
  • The character’s goal (what does he/she want concretely?)
  • The character’s conflict (what prevents him/her from reaching this goal?)
  • The character’s epiphany (what will he/she learn, how will he/she change?
  • A one-paragraph summary of the character’s storyline
  1. Reorganize the following sentences into a logical description (the easiest way to do this is to copy and paste the entire text into a word processing document and then rearrange it.)
  1. The air pump consists of three main parts: barrel assembly, the plunger assembly. and the hose.
  2. It is compact, lightweight, and portable.
  3. The hand-operated air pump is designed for inflating bicycle tires and sporting goods, such as basketballs, footballs, rubber rafts, and so on.
  4. It has a 60 psi (pounds per square inch) rating.
  5. The rustproof, steel construction will ensure many years of useful service.
  6. The brass, octagonal barrel cap allows access to the pump mechanism diaphragm. It is threaded to attach to the housing and has a 1/.1-in. hole in its center to slide over the shaft. A 1/s-in. hole in the side of the cap allows afr to enter the housing.
  7. The barrel assembly consists of three subparts: the housing, a barrel cap, and a toe plate.
  8. The operator clamps the hose nozzle onto the filler stem of a tire to be inflated, stands on the toe plate, and pumps the plunger up and down to inflate the tire with air. If the item to be inflated is a sporting good, the supplied filler needle is inserted into the nozzle clamp.
  9. The housing is a hollow, 41/”.!-in. by 17-in. steel barrel. The top end is threaded to receive the barrel cap.
  10. The 18-in., fabric-covered, rubber hose screws into the barrel housing I in. above the base with an air-tight brass fitting.
  11. A 6-in., wood handle threads onto the top of the rod.
  12. Welded to the bottom of the barrel housing is a 4½-in.-long toe late base on which the operator stands during the operation of the pump’s plunger mechanism.
  13. The plunger assembly consists of three subparts: a rod, a han­dle, and a diaphragm.
  14. The locking clamp nozzle is inserted into the hose end and is secured with a Ys-in. metal band. A thumb chuck allows quick release for regular and high-pressure use.
  15. The rod is a Vi-in. by 161/i-in., threaded steel shaft.
  16. The plunger assembly fits into the housing and is secured by the barrel cap.
  17. The pump is 161/2 in. high and is constructed of steel with rubber hosing and brass fittings.
  18. A diaphragm, a leather washer, is secured Lo the lower end of the rod by two 1/.,-in. nuts.

3. Write an expanded definition of the term that is suitable for first-year students in the field (this is your audience). Begin with a formal sentence definition, and then expand your definition by using at several extended- definition strategies that we talked about in class. You may use a graphic or visual, but it is not necessary. Use parenthetical or phrase definitions for unusual terms within your extended definition. In the margin, indicate the writing strategies that you have used. Some suggested terms are:

political science                  architecture                         speech therapy

psychology                           sociology                              biology

electronics                           astronomy                           classical music

accounting                           computer science              engineering

law                                         linguistics                             robotics

finance                                  chemistry                             medicine

  1. Write a general mechanism description of a common household appliance. You may choose from the following list, or you may write about something of your own choosing:

Coffee maker                                  food processor                   electric can opener

TV remote control                         toaster                                  curling iron

Blow dryer                                       electric razor                       electric toothbrush

Lamp                                                  alarm clock                          camera

  1. No journal entry this week.
  2. Continue with your word collection.
  3. Read Elements of Style p. 66-72
  4. Read On Writing Well Ch 7.

Homework over  Christmas Break

Have a Blessed Christmas!! I love this class! You all are great kids and you are going to be phenomenal writers one day!

  1. Finish your research paper. If you all want to band together to help each other edit your papers, I think that would be a fabulous idea. You can send your second drafts to each other and mark them up. You can scan and send them back to each other via email. Use the following guidelines when turning it in:
  • Make a cover page for your paper that includes the title of your paper, your name, Advanced Composition – Mrs. Stassi, and Research Paper
  • You may include a Table of Contents or list of Illustrations if you think you need to, but this is not a requirement. If you include one, I will give you 5 extra points.
  • Outline of your research paper in proper outline format.
  • Paper – Start the text of your paper with the Title at the top of the page. Make sure you indent the first line of each paragraph. Use 12-14 point font, double-spaced!! Make sure it is double spaced. If it is not double-spaced I am going to hand it right back to you and deduct 5 points from your grade. You must have at least 10 pages typed. Use MLA format.
  • Bibliography/Works Cited page – Use MLA format. Only cite the works that you used. You must use the proper citation formatting for quotes, etc., within your paper. I want you to use a variety of sources, not just internet magazines and articles. You will need to go to the library for sure. Ask the librarian to help you find information about your subject matter. Going to different branches might help you find information. They all have different sources available a lot of times.
  • Bibliography cards/files – You will need to turn these in. If you use the index card method, you will need to put them in some kind of enclosure, such as a large envelope.
  1. Now that you’ve written your one line summary of your novella, you will take that one line summary and spend another hour or so on it to expand it to a full paragraph describing the story setup, major disasters, and ending of the novel. You can divide your story into parts, depending on how many conflicts you have, plus the ending For example, if you have 3 conflicts, plus the ending, each conflict would take up 1 quarter of your novel and the ending would take up 1 quarter of the novel. Or if you only have 2 conflicts, then the 2 conflicts would each take up  a third of the novel and the ending would take up a third. You can think of each section as an act. Act 1 sets up the story, Act 2 is the rising action, Act 3 is the falling action and Act 4 is the resolution. Be as concise as possible. To keep yourself from going into too much detail, you should use one sentence per Act. Don’t get caught up in characters or their descriptions. You should not refer to characters by name.
  2. Write 7 journal entries. You have a month to do it.
  3. Continue with your word collections.
  4. . Read Elements of Style pages 57-65.

  5. Read On Writing Well Chapter 18.

  6. Parenthetical Definition. Add a brief word or phrase of definition in parentheses after each italicized word.
    a. The loess improved the fertility of the soil.
    b. An implosion occurred during the experiment.
    c. The president vetoed the bill.
  7. Formal Definitions. Write a one-sentence formal definition for the following terms. Avoid the five fallacies (too technical, too broad, too narrow, avoid using when and where, do not provide a circular definition which is using the term you are defining in the definition).
    lift (aviation)

Homework for the Week of November 29

Next week is the last class before Christmas Break!! You made it!! You are about halfway through the school year. Let’s celebrate your accomplishments and the birth of Jesus with some breakfast munchies. Please bring a snack to share with the class.

  1. APA Documentation. – Write the following information in the APA system for a paper on psychological aspects of communication.
  • An article entitled How We Interpret Others’ Feelings, published in the 2004, vol. 18 edition of Psychological Studies, written by J. L. Duckham and Brenda Bailey on pages 102–104.
  • A Prentice Hall publication in New York of a book, Communication Theories, by Theodore Conover, M.D. in 2004.
  • An article entitled Do Men and Women Think Alike? by Muriel Chadwick in the December 2003 edition of Psychology Today on pages 72 to 76.


  • MLA Documentation. – Rewrite the following information in the MLA style for a “Works Cited” listing:
  • An article in Technical Communication by C. R. Miller entitled Some Thoughts on Document Design, on pages 108–111 of Volume 37 in July 2003.
  • Visual Language: Global Communication for the 2 1st Century by Robert E. Horn published by Allyn & Bacon in 2000 in New York, N.Y.
  • An Encyclopedia Britannica article on CD-ROM on Technical Communication published in 1999, written by T. S. Stephan.
  1. Sensory Description exercise – Write a descriptive story about the random object you selected in class. Your story may be any length, but no less than a well thought- out paragraph. Remember to use adjectives, adverbs and prepositional phrases to add description and information to your story. Also, you should appeal to your audience’s senses (sight, smell, hearing, touching, tasting) by asking questions that pertain to your item. Answer the “Ws” (Who, What, When Where, Why) and “H” (How) questions to provide information to the reader about your object.
  1. Continue working on your research paper. Remember it is due the day we get back after Christmas break. If you need any help over the holiday, please let me know. I will be going to the library to help my son with a research paper over the holidays. I will let you all know a week in advance when that will be, so that you can come to the library when I am there if you want to.
  1. Spend about an writing your one sentence wonder sentence for your novella. This sentence will be the selling tool that you use when you present your book to a publisher, editor, etc., if you choose to do so Here are some hints for you to write the sentence:
  • Shorter is better. Try for fewer than 15 words.
  • No character names, please! Better to say “a handicapped trapeze artist” than “Jane Doe”.
  • Tie together the big picture and the personal picture. Which character has the most to lose in this story? Now tell me what he or she wants to win.
  • Read the one-line blurbs on the New York Times Bestseller list to learn how to do this. Writing a one-sentence description is an art form that takes practice. It is OK to model your sentences using examples you see from the bestsellers.
  1. Continue with your word collection.
  1. Read Elements of Style pages 51-56.
  1. Read On Writing Well Chapter 16.
  1. Complete 6 journal entries this week. Following are some prompts for inspiration;
  • A movie director is looking for teens to act in a movie that will be set in your town.  Think of yourself and all the teens you know.  Who would you choose to act in this movie?  Think why you would choose this person.  Write an essay to convince the movie director of your choice.
  • Imagine that you had a friend who ate only junk food, and you know that this is not good for him or her.  Think of some reasons why eating junk food is not good for people.  Now write an essay to convince your reader of your opinion.
  • A good friend of yours is thinking of moving to your town.  Think of some attributes of your town that would appeal to your friend.  Now write an essay to convince your friend to move to your town.
  • What kind of year has it been for you? What events and experiences marked your most memorable moments? Write about an event as if it were a synopsis of a movie, choosing one of these famous film titles as the title of your own “movie.” Keep in mind that your synopsis probably won’t follow the original movie’s storyline! For example, if you just went through the coldest winter in memory, you might pick Frozen as your movie title. If you backed your mom’s car into a fire hydrant, Wreck-it Ralph or Despicable Me could make a good choice.

Despicable Me

For the Love of the Game

Family Vacation

Home Alone


The Sound of Music

  • Describe a place from an unusual point of view or vantage point, such as:
    • Your bedroom or den from your fish’s viewpoint
    • A winding mountain road from a car’s point of view
    • Your neighborhood from a hawk’s vantage point
    • Your backyard from your dog’s perspective
    • A grocery store from the point of view of a loaf of bread
    • Your refrigerator from the viewpoint of a wrinkled old apple
    • Or, come up with your own idea!
  • Many people are convinced that violence on TV influences children and teens to be violent in real life.  Do you think that this is true?  Do you think that the violence on TV is responsible for increased violence among today’s youth?  Take a stand on this issue and write an essay to convince your reader of your position on whether TV causes violence in real life.

Homework for the Week of 11/14

  1. Read The Elements of Style pages 34-38.
  2. Read On Writing Well Chapter 14
  3. Write in your journal 5 times this week. You may use any of these prompts for inspiration:
  • What are your thoughts about the Presidential election?
  • What sports team are you cheering for and why/
  • Does your family follow any traditions at Thanksgiving other than eating turkey with all the fixings? What is it and why?
  • Write a letter to God focused solely on thanking Him.
  • What 3 things can you do to make gratitude more of a focus in the coming year?
  • What are you reading? What do you think of it so far?
  • Describe your current emotional state.
  1. Collect 10 words for your word collection
  2. Pin the Atlas writing assignment – Pretend you are a travel writer and write about a weird experience you had in the country that you randomly selected on the map in class.
  3. Start working on your research paper by gathering information.
  4. Here is a good link for the MLA format style.


Homework for the Week of 11/7

  1. Complete the summaries of the two articles, using the planner I handed out in class.
  2. Read the following excerpt on space exploration and then test your note taking skills. Write a paraphrase of each sentence.

Seven spacecraft have probed the surface of Mars or circled the planet with the mission of determining the geology and structure of the planet and seeking to answer if water ever existed there. These probes include two NASA orbiters, two NASA rovers, one European Space Agency or- biter which will release a lander, and a Japanese orbiter. The equipment on board the rovers will analyze rock and soil targets of interest and evaluate their composition and texture. In the next two decades even more probes are planned. Surely, in the not-too-far future it is probable that man will set foot on Earth’s closest neighbor.

  1. Read the handout about the rules of dialog.
  2. One of the most powerfully vivid ways to show character, relationship, conflict and/or mood is through the use of dialogue. Your writing task this week is to write a scene where the characters are having a conversation, using one of the following prompts, This can be a casual conversation or an argument that creates tension. However, you are to create tension using only dialog.

Larry & Saul Bake a Cake

Larry and Saul are elderly brothers. Larry is jealous of Saul. Saul thinks Larry is full of himself. They are in Larry’s kitchen making a cake. Write the scene with dialogue.

Good Cat, Bad Cat

In a pet store: he wants a cat; she does not. Through conversation, describe the cat in question and the argument between the two characters or from the perspective of the cat.

What’s in a Name

A mother and daughter are shopping for a wedding dress. The mother obviously does not like her daughter’s choice for a possible husband. Write the scene using dialog that includes this statement: A name is a very powerful thing. Make sure you don’t just give yours to anyone.”

Family Reunion

A brother and sister are loading their car while preparing to leave for a family reunion. The brother says, “ I am not above slashing my own tires in order to avoid going to this family reunion!”

  1. Read Elements of Style Chapter 1 #19-20.
  2. Read On Writing Well Chapter 23.
  3. Write in your journal 4 times this week. If you would like some prompts, please email or text me and I will send some out.

Homework for the Week of 10/31

  1. You will need to decide on a topic for your research paper. Use the brainstorming technique that was modeled in class to narrow your topic from a broad topic to something very specific. Allow yourself to come up with several different topics from which to use. This is actually an assignment, so I would like to see you use this technique to narrow your topic. Show your work so I can see how you got from the broad to the specific.
2. Through Web addresses, keywords, or several search engines, locate Web sites that contain information on the topic you are going to use for your research paper. List ten or more of the addresses.

3. Read Elements of Style Chapter 1 #21-22.

4. Read On Writing Well Chapter 21.

5. Continue with your word collection.

6. Write in your journal 3 times this week. Use the words from the word collection list to write one of your journal entries. Below are some ideas for inspiration:

  • Write a pep talk for yourself the next time you feel sad, upset or full of doubt.
  • Use descriptive words and personification to write about what it’s like to be a musical instrument such as a piano, violin, guitar, or drum.
  • Continue this: Of course, the one day they needed her the witch was out trick or treating.
  • The punch at the Halloween party was spiked with a shrinking potion.
  • A dwarf is mining in a cave and find a dragon egg. This particular dwarf is sympathetic and wants to keep it and raise the beast, but his people hate dragons because of what they did to them years ago.
  • You are working in a library organizing books on the shelves, when suddenly one of the books nearby starts glowing.

Homework for the Week of 10/24

We’ve had a few light homework weeks, but I think I am making up for that now. If you just can’t get it all done, please let me know and I will give you an extension. I hope you give it your best shot, though. I wouldn’t give you this much if I didn’t think you could do it. You are all very good students and writing comes easy for you, so I am confident about your ability to complete it. Contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Next Monday is Halloween! In celebration of Halloween, you may choose to dress up, if you want. I know you all may think you have grown out of doing something like that, but sometimes it is fun to be silly. If you do, why don’t you dress up as your a favorite character from a book or a person from history or something clever (a play on words, perhaps). You may bring some breakfasty snacks if you would like. We will munch while we learn. I might make some homemade cinnamon rolls or something.

  1. Mixed up fairly tale – Use the characters, setting and conflict that you received in class to write a mixed up fairy tale. Your fairy tale should be around 1000 words, which is 3 pages typed. Use Arial 12 font and double space. Your fairy tale can be more than 3 pages if you desire, but it needs to be at least three. This will be a good exercise of revising a story if you think it runs short. If it is too short, go back and read it again to see where you might be able to add description.
  2. Read the section about Production Decision at the link below. This will help you with the next two exercises and also the Table of Contents Exercise. You can copy and paste the link into your browser if need be.


  1. Size of Paper. – Locate a user manual that is not printed on 8-1/2 x 11 paper. State three reasons why you believe it is the size it is. Submit it or a photocopy of a few pages with your reasons. When you are writing your reasons, I would at least like a well though-out paragraph that includes and introductory sentence, 3 details (being the 3 reasons) and a sentence that supports each detail . The sentence that supports each detail should be an explanation or an example for that detail. You will also need a closing sentence. This will be a total of at least 8 sentences. It can be more than that but it at least needs to be 8.
  2. Quality of Paper. – Locate a document that you think has been printed on the inappropriate or appropriate quality of paper (one or the other). Paper can be thicker or thinner than it should be. A good source to look might be your mail that you receive at home. Read the section on paper quality in the chapter. The link is below. Name three reasons why the paper is inappropriate. Submit the original with your reasons. Same specifications as the previous.
  3. Document Design. Study the following material. Add at least six enhancements to the document design. Look at the chapter for reference to the design elements that we talked about in class. Do not be decorative. Make your design features impart meaning to the document. You may reword sentences if you have a compelling need to do so.

Prepare visuals to clarify and emphasize your oral report. Visual materi-

als may include chalkboards, flip charts, posters of tables, charts draw-

ings, handout sheets, exhibits of models or equipment, slides, filmstrips,

transparencies, or computer projections. The size of the room or audito-

rium, the kind of people in your audience (employers, employees, po-

tential buyers, multinational individuals, etc.), the budget, the available

equipment (chalkboards, projectors, computers, tables, and so forth), and

the purpose of your speech are all factors to consider in planning visual

material. Effective visual materials are characterized by a number of fac-

tors such as simplicity, unity, emphasis, balance, and legibility. Rehearse

your speech a number of times before you actually give it. Practice before

a mirror and use a tape recorder. If possible, give your speech to a small

group of friends. Ask them to assess your poise, eye contact, voice, ges-

tures, and rate. Your voice should be conversational, confident, and en-

thusiastic. Avoid a monotonous sound at all costs. Vary your pitch and

intensity. Monitor the volume and rate of your speech. Judge the quality

of your voice. Are you shrill, nasal, raspy, breathy, growly?

  1. Table of Contents – Write a table of contents for this chapter. You can format it using the Table of Contents feature in Microsoft Word or you can custom format it. The Table of Contents feature can be found under References on the Word menu, if you have the same version that I have. Do not use leaders.
  1. Read Elements of Style Chapter 2 #17-18.
  1. Read On Writing Well Chapter 10.
  1. Write in your journal 2 times this week. Following are some ideas:
  • Who was someone you met and then forgot? (Like a cashier or bank teller).
  • Is it ok to get even with someone? Why?
  • Who is the best athlete of all time? Why?
  • Do you want kids when you grow up? Explain.
  • Cake or pie, and why.

Homework for the Week 10/17

I am sorry I am late posting your homework. It’s a light homework week. Enjoy it while it lasts!!

Below, is a link to the chapter of the book I use for professional writing. I just happened to find this chapter online. We got all the way up to Headings, but you may find the information past that point that might help you write your critique. It is also a good source when some of this information will be on the test.


  1. Write in your journal 1 time. if you need a choice of prompts let me know.
  2. Continue with your word collection.
  3. Photocopy 2 pages from another textbook or a user manual that you feel exemplify quality document design. Write a critique explaining why you feel the format helps to convey meaning. Be Specific in your references.

Homework for Week 10/11

Thank you all for putting up with me today. I was very distracted due to my missing pet, but he returned late last night, so all is well.

  1. Girls, you can take the week off from journal writing! Woot! Jonathan, you still owe me a few. Sorry, dude!

2. Read the notes that I am sending through email. You should get them early this afternoon.

3. Complete the take home test. You may use your notes. I will answer any of your questions, but I hope you took good notes in class.

4. Write a longer short story using the art card that you selected as your inspirations. I entitle this writing project “A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words.” This means that I want at least a thousand word story. A thousand words is roughly three pages typed. I say at least, because it can be well over that amount if need be. make sure your story has the elements of any story: Setting, Characters, Conflict/Plot, Point of View, and Theme. I don’t think you all will have any problem doing this. You all really shine in your creative writing.

5. After you have read the notes I sent and examined the handout of graphics, I want you to select a graphic that you find effective in a magazine, newspaper textbook, manual, newsletter, or brochure. Write a few paragraphs about its effectiveness. How does it adhere to the general conventions of graphics and visuals. Is it the best type of graphic for the situation. What, if anything, could be improved? When you turn this in, I would like you to attach the graphic that you used, along with your comments.

6. Now select a graphic that you find ineffective. Write a few paragraphs about its weaknesses. How does it deviate from the general conventions of graphics and visuals? Why doesn’t it work well? What needs improvement? Would another type of graphic work better? Explain. This assignment may take some time and research. Again, attach the graphic to your comments when you turn it in next week. Please take the time it deserves to complete it.

7. Read Elements of Style Chapter 2 #15-16.

8. Read On Writing Well Chapter 21 and 13.

Homework for Week of 10/3

We were a class of 1 this week so we did not do very much. So because of that we have a light homework week, which is making us more behind on our syllabus; however, we will make up some time in a couple of weeks. We were supposed to go for a library tour in preparation for writing a research paper. We are not going to do that during class hours because the library is not open at that time. The main branch is open at 9 a.m., but because I have a class right after this one, I do not have much time to tour and get back to CPC in time for that. All the other libraries open at noon on Monday. So, we will talk about arranging to do the tour on a different day if possible.

I finished the lecture on the writing process and will send out the notes for that. I will send the notes out for you to read through. After you have finished reading the notes, rewrite the paragraphs to eliminate the specified language. The paragraphs will be included with the notes.

The final draft of your essay is due on Monday. If you want me to edit it one more time, please scan it and send it to me. i will return it to you as quickly as I can. Your final copy needs to have a title page, which includes the title, the date, your name and the class name. The first page needs to have the title at the top of the page. Make sure you use double spacing and size 12 Arial font.


A picture is worth a thousand words! Well…..give or take a few, anyway. Madelyn, write a longer short story about the impressionist painting that you selected in class. This is not a 10 minute wonder that we have been writing in class. This is a longer short story that you should work on throughout the week. It should have a beginning, middle and end and should contain the basic elements of a story: setting, characters, plot, conflict, point of view, theme. If you are unfamiliar with these concepts, the following website defines them nicely:


Jonathan and Hannah, you do not have to complete this short story this week. Since you weren’t here, you were not able to select the painting from my card deck of painting to write about. That’s OK, though. You will do this next week along with your other assignments. Next week we will be taking the week off from journal writing, so it will seem like you are missing something and will have plenty of time to write your short story.

Continue working on your word collections. Be careful about collecting words that you would never use. The purpose of this exercise is to build your vocabulary so that when you write, you will have a large collection of words to draw upon when you write for a variety of purposes.

Which brings me to my next item: JOURNAL WRITING. You will write in your journal 7 times this week!! You can do it! Next week you will have the week off from it! Below are some prompts to help you. You may also use any of the previous prompts I have posted.

  • Finish this thought: If I could plan my own birthday party I would…
  • What happens next? I was playing my favorite computer game when, all of a sudden, I was transported into my computer…
  • Finish this thought: If I could move to anywhere in the world, I would move to…
  • What would you do if there was no more electricity?
  • If you were the ruler of the world, what would you do?
  • Make a commercial for your favorite product?
  • If you were the parent, what would your day be like?
  • If you could invent any machine that you wanted, what would you invent?
  • What happens next? I was walking down a deserted road when…
  • Do you want to be older, younger or the age you are now? Write about it.

Homework for Week of 9/26

Once again, if you don’t understand your assignments, please contact me. I am available through text, phone, email, or Skype. If you are thinking about not turning in your homework because you don’t understand it, you need to call me.

It’s a light homework week. Take advantage of it because it won’t always be that way. LOL Have a good trip Jonathan!!

  1. Continue editing your second draft of your essays. Hannah and Jonathan, I will scan and email the edits to you. The final draft is due TWO WEEKS from today!!! If the final draft is turned in late, I will deduct 5 points per day that it is late!! You have 2 weeks to complete it, so this is plenty of time to get it polished.


2. If there is any homework that has not been completed and that you need to turn in, please turn it in over the next couple of weeks.

3. Read Elements of Style Chapter 2 #13-14

4. Read On Writing Well Chapter 8-9.

5. Continue looking for unethical writing. Sources could be from the newspaper, advertisements, magazines, software, product manuals, warranties, instructions, descriptions, etc. And unethical writing is hard to find sometimes mainly because those producing it don’t want you to find it. Keep looking!

6. You are up to 6 entries in your journals. Jonathan, you will need to show me your 6 for this week and then complete 7 the next week. Bring your journal with you on your trip so you can write. Write down some of the writing prompts before you go in case you need some inspiration. Below are some prompts to get you going  (have fun with these):

  • Write about how you fit the stereotype of people from your country… or about how you don’t fit it at all.
  • Tell your story about the time you succeeded at something because you just. Didn’t. Give. Up.
  • Write about one of the worst classmates or coworkers you’ve ever had.
  • Write about an impulse buy that leads to intergalactic warfare.
  • Write about the story of when your parents met, but transpose it to the Victorian era.
  • Write about what would happen if you were teaching a language class to aliens.
  • Write about someone who goes to extreme lengths to return something that he/she borrowed.
  • Write a short story about how a sailor comes home from sea to find out that his wife knows everything he has done while away.
  • Write a story about someone who is obsessed about marmalade, or something else.
  • Take this quote and run with it: “The color of her blood was the least of my worries!”

Homework for Week of 9/19

We are slightly off the syllabus, but sometimes when you come up with a great creative writing exercise on the fly, you must go with it! What great writer’s you all are! I love listening to your stories! Keep up the good work! Next week, we must talk about the writing process. I will also be sending you some notes to keep about legal issues as they pertain to writing that we didn’t get to last week. You will need to read that information.

  1.  Continue with your word collections. You all are finding some great words!!
  2.  Make the editing changes for you essay. Be thoughtful about it. You are on the right track. Look for an email from me that will contain an attachment of the checklist to use for the second draft of your essay. I will try to get it to you by noon on Tuesday. Feel free to use any of the techniques you are reading about in the book On Writing Well while editing your essay.
  3. Continue looking for examples of unethical writing from a variety of sources (photos, illustrations, charts, graphs, warnings, disclaimers, small print, instructions, etc.)
  4. Find a highly technical source and rewrite it to an audience at a junior high level. Remember, it will have to be something that a junior high student would actually use or be interested in. You can use software, online help, technical documents, scientific studies, proposals, product documentation, instructions, processes, descriptions, etc.).

    Consider that student’s knowledge and vocabulary. Think about what technical terms must be simplified. How must the message be reworded? Do you need more or fewer graphics, numbers, bullets, headings, font and type size changes and so forth. These are all things you must consider when analyzing your audience

  5. If you did not do this assignment last week, please complete it this week. Look for strong verbs in poems or stories where the author used strong verbs (example: “tiptoe” instead of “walk”). Please include the name of the poem and possibly even a copy of it if you can. If you turned in this assignment you do not have to do it again.

  6. Read Elements of Style Chapter 1 #11 and Chapter 2 #12.

  7. Read On Writing Well Chapters 6-7.

  8. We are up to 5 journal entries this week. Here are some prompts to help you if you need it.
  • A blue trash can, a red picture frame, a teddy bear with the stuffing falling out, and a padlock. Put these four items somewhere in a story, scene, or poem.
  • “That’s not what I meant!” Write a story that has this line in it somewhere.
  • As the saying goes, “rules are meant to be broken.” Tell about a time when you broke the rules and what happened as a result.
  • There is a saying that you should be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it. Describe a time when you wished for something and got it—and then wished you hadn’t—or make up a story in which this happens to the character.
  • Rewrite “The Tale of the Three Little Pigs” by using people that you know as the pigs and the wolf.
  • According to a Czechoslovakian proverb, “Better a lie that soothes than a truth that hurts.” Agree or disagree? Explain


Homework for Week of 9/12

Thank you for being patient during my 2 hour lecture! We will start with some fun stuff next time! I promise! Lots of homework this week. We are starting to ramp up to a lot of writing. Hannah, if you feel like you won’t be able to get done with all this,  feel free to eliminate the reading. You can catch up on that next week if need be. If you get it all done, then great!!

  1. Look for strong verbs in poems and stories where the author used strong verbs (for example, “tiptoe” instead of “walk”). This will require some research and reading. You may use your Thesaurus if you need to.

2. Continue with your word collection. Collect another 10 words this week. We will share some of our word collections during the next class. For Hannah: collect 10 interesting or cool words that you hear in conversation or read/hear in media or publications. Then look up each of your 10 words in the Thesaurus. Look at the synonyms for each word and choose one of the synonyms to add to your word collection. You will need some kind of small notebook or a separate notebook to keep and manage your word lists. It should be separate from the notebook in which you take notes.

3. Locate a sample of technical writing (memos, product descriptions, instructions for a product analysis of a technical process, a magazine advertisement or article, user guide manual for any kind of appliance or produet or a technical page) Photocopy it or bring an original if you have it. Write two or three paragraphs to explain what you think marks it as technical writing. Bring your sample to class.

4. Locate in print a product warranty or a product user’s manual that gives a false impression, an overstatement of safety, buried or extra small print warnings or other possible unethical content. Be able to explain the possible ethical lapses.

5. Reading for Jonathan and Madeleine (Hannah see below):

  • Read Elements of Style Chapter 1 #8-10.
  • Read On Writing Well Chapter 11.

Reading and other special instructions for Hannah :

  • Read On Writing Well – Intro-Chapter 4 and Chapter 11
  • Read The Elements of Style – Chapter 1 #1-10
  • Write a 1500 word essay that you can attach to a college application. Check your email today for special instructions concerning this essay. I will be sending you common prompts that colleges use for applicant essays. This is a rough draft, so the point is to crank out the words because we will whittle the word count down through revision.

6. Journal writing: We are up to 4 entries this week. Use subject matter of your own, one of the prompts given on a previously on the homework page or one of the following prompts:

  • You are the mischievous fairy Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. You just learned that you applied a love potion to the wrong young man, and now two men are pursuing the same woman! Journal about your reactions to your mistake. Are you a little bit sorry? Are you looking forward to a day of entertaining mix-ups? Are you confident you can fix your mistake?
  • The most frustrating thing about starting a new school year is….
  • What do you like most about your family?
  • What are 3 goals you have for yourself this school year?
  • Imagine that you are a scarecrow. Write about spending a Fall day in the field.


Homework for Week of 8/29

Another Great class!! Remember…no class next week due to Labor Day! Woot!

For homework over the next 2 weeks:

1. Continue working on your word collections. Collect another 10 words over the next 2 weeks.

Additionally, I want you to add to your word collection using the thesaurus technique that we talked about in class.. For every word in your word collection, look up each word in the second part of the thesaurus. Use the number reference to look up even more synonyms to add to your collection.  So, you will be looking up 20 words in the thesaurus. Only choose one synonym per word in your word collection.

2. Rewrite the following sentences in as many different ways as you can. You may use conjunctive adverbs and coordinating conjunctions, plus change the tense of the verb to rewrite the sentences.

a. As soon as a writer steps in, everyone else’s experience becomes secondhand.
b. It should be noted that many factors influence blood pressure.
c. Marie and Lindsey climbed over the wall and sneaked into the concert during spring break.
d. The sentence is vague, giving us a whiff of the movie’s mood, but no image we can visualize.
e. If your educational preparation is stronger than your employment experience, develop this section first.

3. Write a rough draft of a personal essay that you can attach to a college application. Below you will find a list of popular prompts that colleges and universities use for such an essay. If you are already in the process of writing an essay for a college application, you may use that prompt. Remember, it is not about what you write in the essay, but how you write it. College admissions counselors are looking to see if you know the proper structure for an essay. We talked about the structure in class today.

You will need an opening paragraph that introduces your topic and your main points (try to include at least 3) of your body paragraphs. Your opening paragraph will also include your thesis statement. Then comes your body paragraphs (one main point per paragraph). The first sentence in each body paragraph should identify your main point for that paragraph. You should elaborate on each main point by writing about details, explanations, and examples that clarifies and demonstrates your main points. Each main body paragraph must have a transition sentence that smoothly transitions from one paragraph to another. Finally, you need a closing paragraph. The first sentence in the closing paragraph should restate your topic. Then you should restate each main point from your body paragraphs. Next, restate your thesis. The last sentence should wrap up your essay with a final phrase that brings closure.

This is a rough draft. You will need to crank out about 1,500 words for your rough draft. After revisions, your word count will whittle down to around 1,000 words. Don’t be too concerned about mechanics right now. Your main focus for the rough draft is to get a basic structure going and also crank out the words. A rough draft will not be perfect. Don’t try to make it perfect. It will get better through revision.

Use one of the following prompts:
• Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?
• Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
• Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly content. What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful to you?
• Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.
• Describe a person you admire. Avoid the urge to pen an ode to a beloved figure like Gandhi or Abraham Lincoln. The admissions committee doesn’t need to be convinced they are impressive people. Focus on yourself: Choose someone who has actually caused you to change your behavior or your worldview, and write about how this person influenced you.
• Why do you want to attend this school? Be honest and specific when you respond to this question. Avoid generalities like “to get a good liberal arts education” or “to develop career skills,” and use details that show your interests: “I’m an aspiring doctor and your science department has a terrific reputation.” Colleges are more likely to admit students who can articulate specific reasons why the school is a good fit for them beyond its reputation or ranking on any list. Use the college’s website and literature to do your research about programs, professors, and other opportunities that appeal to you.
• What is a book you love? Your answer should not be a book report. Don’t just summarize the plot; detail why you enjoyed this particular text and what it meant to you. What does your favorite book reveal about you? How do you identify with it, and how has it become personal to you? Again, be honest in answering this question—don’t choose a classic from your literature class or a piece of philosophy just because you think it will make you seem smarter. Writing fluently and passionately about a book close to you is always better than writing shakily or generally about a book that doesn’t inspire you.
• What is an extracurricular activity that has been meaningful to you? Avoid slipping into clichés or generalities. Take this opportunity to really examine an experience that taught you something you didn’t previously know about yourself, got you out of your comfort zone, or forced you to grow. Sometimes it’s better to write about something that was hard for you because you learned something than it is to write about something that was easy for you because you think it sounds impressive. As with all essay questions, the most important thing is to tell a great story: how you discovered this activity, what drew you to it, and what it’s shown you about yourself.

4. TEST ON GRAMMAR AND PUNCTUATION THE MONDAY AFTER LABOR DAY!!! Please be sure to study. Focus your study on the sections of your handout for:
– Adjectives and adverbs
– Phrases (participial, infinitive, gerund)
– Clauses (independent and dependent)
– Sentence classification (simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex)
– Basic errors (fragments, run-ons and comma splices)
– Parallel structure
– Subject verb agreement
– Pronoun agreement
– Apostrophes (sections 1.1, 1.2, 1.3)
– Commas (sections 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4,4.5,
– Quotation marks (sections 11.1, 11.3)
– Semicolons (sections 12.1, 12.2, 12.3)
– Capital (sections 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4,

5. Write in your journal two times this week and 3 times Labor Day week for a total of 5 entries. You may use any of the following prompts, the previous prompts from last week or ideas of your own.
a. During this political season, have you thought about a certain political affiliation that you agree with, such as Democrat, Republican or other? Why? How do you feel about the political environment of the upcoming Presidential election?
b. “The secret door opened into my perfect world…” (Describe your perfect world, including conflict an antagonist and protagonist.)
c. You have just been crowned the ruler of a new territory. Create your first law. Describe how this law will benefit your kingdom.
d. Recreate a new ending for the last book you read.
e. You are granted a trip on a time machine to a historical event. Describe the event and your journey.

6. Read On Writing Well Chapters 2-4.

7. Read The Elemen