Write… For The Future
Strategies for Expository Writing
to Explain Why
• well thought out leads
Expository Openings
Prompt: Everyone should learn how to read.
Explain why learning to read is important.
What would it be like to be forty years
Rhetorical Question: old and not be able to read?
There are many adults living in the
Present a Startling Fact: US today who do not know how to
read.
Quote a Respected Source: According to President Obama,
every child must learn to read.
Use a Literary Device:
Reading is the pathway to other
worlds.
Make a General Statement: Each person has the responsibility
Pose a Challenging Question:
of learning how to read.
What if every child could read
on grade level by age eight?
Your TurnOpenings
Prompt: Everybody has someone whom they admire or
someone who is a hero to them. Think about someone whom
you consider a hero. Explain why you think that person is a
hero in third person.
Rhetorical Question:
Present a Startling Fact:
Quote a Respected Source:
Use a Literary Device:
Make a General Statement:
Pose a Challenging Question:
Handout
Strategies for Expository Writing
to Explain Why
• well thought out leads
• varied elaboration techniques
Create a tree map of the 8 techniques
Ways to Elaborate
Explain: Tell what you mean
This color is not right for Sarah. She
looks dull as a dirty sock in beige. You should
wear blue like your eyes.
Exemplify. Give an example
Bob’s brother always helps him out when he is
in trouble. For example, yesterday when Bob
missed the bus, his brother drove him to
school. Bob had a test first period and his
brother didn’t want him to get a zero.
Boris
Once upon a time, there lived a pirate named
Boris von der Borch.
He was tough.
All pirates are tough.
He was massive.
All pirates are massive.
He was scruffy.
All pirates are scruffy.
He was greedy.
All pirates are greedy.
He was fearless.
All pirates are fearless.
He was scary.
All pirates are scary.
But when his parrot died,
he cried and cried.
And so do I.
Clarification Statements are like a child’s
drawing of a Rainbow . . .
It looks the same no matter the direction from
which it is viewed.
Mother Teresa was generous.
In other words, she gave away
more than most people.
For example, when she met
a beggar on the street she gave
him the last coins that she had.
Tough Boris
tough
scruffy
massive
greedy
fearless
scary
Ways to Elaborate
Explain: Tell what you mean
This color is not right for Sarah. She
looks dull as a dirty sock in beige. You should
wear blue like your eyes.
Exemplify. Give an example
Bob’s brother always helps him out when he is
in trouble. For example, yesterday when Bob
missed the bus, his brother drove him to
school. Bob had a test first period and his
brother didn’t want him to get a zero.
Examples help to make general statements
more specific and abstract ideas more
concrete.
Most people have received only small amounts of
radiation from nuclear weapons production and
testing. Some activities, occupations, and
geographic
areas, however, expose a person to
general
greater-than-average radiation. For example, a
person living at an altitude of 5,000 feet in Denver,
specific
Colorado, receives nearly twice as much cosmic
radiation from outer space as a person living at
sea level in Washington, D.C.
specific
Most people have received only small amounts of
radiation from nuclear weapons production and
testing. Some activities,
occupations, and
general
geographic areas, however, expose a person to
greater-than-average radiation. For example, a
person living at an altitude of 5,000 feet in Denver,
Colorado, receives nearly twice as much cosmic
radiation from outer space as a person living at
sea level in Washington, D.C.
specific
Use of cell phones
Use microwave ovens
Most people have received only small amounts of
radiation from nuclear weapons production and
testing. Some activities, occupations,
and
general
geographic areas, however, expose a person to
greater-than-average radiation. For example, a
person living at an altitude of 5,000 feet in Denver,
Colorado, receives nearly twice as much cosmic
radiation from outer space as a person living at
sea level in Washington, D.C.
specific
X-ray technicians
Atomic scientists
Example
Ex
from
out of
ample
Unless
a writer
uses examples
the reader
is likely
to fall
asleep
You’d be surprised
What a Girl Scout
Cookie can build:
Strong Values
Strong Minds
Strong Bodies
Strong Spirit
Strong Friendships
Strong Skills
Strong Leadership
Strong Community
Thin Mints
Bold Statement – needs to be
to be backed-up with specifics
General
To
Specific
Girl Scout Emblem
Glowing Light Bulb
Figure Running
Heart
Shaking Hands
Computer
Olympic Torch
Three Houses
Concrete nouns – yo-yo vs. a toy
Precise adjectives – dirty white, snowy
white vs. white
Strong verbs – slumped vs. sat
Envelope
Activity
Ways to Elaborate
Describe: Tell how it looks, tastes, smells, and
sounds using concrete nouns, specific adjectives,
and strong verbs.
The bed looks good now because it was painted
white. Sarah bought a black and white striped
comforter and three firm, round black pillows to
toss on it. It is so comfortable looking and inviting.
Describe: Tell what it looks, tastes, smells, sounds,
or feels like using figurative language.
Sarah’s bed looks like a zebra with its black and
white striped comforter.
Ways to Elaborate
Narrate: Relate a personal experience to show what
you mean.
The town really does stick together. Last year, a
young couple’s only child had to have a kidney
transplant. The town threw a big pig-picking and
raised a thousand dollars for them. Many people
brought friends and relatives from out of town so
we could raise more money for the couple and child.
The entire family expressed appreciation for the
town’s kind gesture.
The kids in Miss Nelson’s
class were misbehaving
again.
Ways to Elaborate
Explain: Tell what you mean
The kids in Miss Nelson’s class were
misbehaving again. In other words, the
students were not obeying the class rules.
Exemplify. Give an example
The kids in Miss Nelson’s class were misbehaving
again. For example, a red-headed boy threw a
spitball across the room and hit a little girl in the
head. In addition to this, two students sat on the
floor playing a game of jacks. Just to the side of
the teacher’s desk, two boys bickered over who
was the owner of a chewed-up pencil.
Describe: Tell how it looks, tastes, smells, and
sounds using concrete nouns, specific adjectives,
and strong verbs.
The kids in Miss Nelson’s class were misbehaving
again. One student pounded his desk in sharp
staccato beats as another student raked his nails
across the chalkboard with a screeching sound
that shockwaves through the class. The aroma
of green apple bubble gum filled the air as still
another student blew and popped lime greentinted bubbles in rapid succession.
Describe: Tell what it looks, tastes, smells,
sounds, or feels like using figurative language.
The kids in Miss Nelson’s class were misbehaving
again. They could be compared to a cage full of
mischievous, noisy monkeys.
Narrate: Relate a personal experience to show
what you mean
The kids in Miss Nelson’s class were misbehaving
again. When the substitute teacher first walked
into the room an eraser zoomed past her head.
As she hurriedly approached the teacher’s desk
the sight of a large hairy spider caused her
heart to leap and a scream of terror to escape
her lips. At that exact moment riotous laughter
filled the room. After only a second of
hesitation, the substitute teacher spun on her
heels and raced from the classroom, just in time
to miss the spitball targeted for her head.
Bring your
writing
all the way
down to the
Beggar’s Hand
Mother Teresa was a generous person. In other
words, she gave away more than most people would
be willing to give. For example she has been known
to give all of her money away and have nothing left for
herself. One day she was walking down a cobbled
street in the poorest part of the city. Hunched in the
corner of a windy church doorway sat a poor beggar
clad in a threadbare jacket and shoes that were
pitiful even for a homeless person. Mother Teresa
reached her gnarled, arthritic fingers deep into the
pocket of her habit and searched for the only three
coins that she had in the world. Unmindful of the fact
that she had not eaten all day and had no food in her
own cupboard, Mother Teresa slowly drew the coins
out of her vestment and placed them into the dirty,
calloused out-stretched hand of the beggar. He looked
into her kind eyes appreciative for the first meal he
would have in three days. Mother Teresa walked away;
the jingle in her pocket was gone, yet her sprit
felt richer than a million coins.
You may also elaborate with--Cause and effect
(Because-_____happened,…
As a result of _____,…..
Or
Comparison/contrast
(In contrast to…, This contrasts to…, On the
other hand,…
Quick Review
Turn to the person beside you and
discuss eight ways to elaborate in
expository writing to explain why.
explain
personal experience
(anecdote)
example
cause/effect
compare/contrast
concrete description
figurative language
experiences/words of others
Handout
Strategies for Expository Writing
to Explain Why
• well thought out leads
• varied elaboration techniques
• using appropriate transitional devices
to guide the reader
therefore
in addition
unlike
cause and
effect
another
example
contrast
similarly
in other words
comparison
explanation
one day
anecdote
Relating Factor: signals
Handout
Strategies for Expository Writing
to Explain Why
well thought out leads
varied elaboration techniques
using appropriate transitional devices
to guide the reader
well thought out conclusions
Ending Triggers
Prompt: Write a composition about why it is
important for everyone to learn how to read.
Money:
Environment:
Time:
Role Modeling:
Health:
Responsibility:
Safety:
Education:
Pleasure:
Equality:
Self Image:
Family:
What you are going to be graded on…
• Create one draft of this essay…
– Lead
– Thesis
– Structure
– Elaboration (triangle), at least 2 types
– Vivid Language
– Broad-picture conclusion
– Uses at least 3 transitions effectively
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Writing to Explain Why - Deer Valley Unified School District