Can you believe it? School starts in a little over a week. After all your work on the summer assignments, we are ready to be together in person. While we are awaiting our gathering on the first day of school, I wanted to go over the class average, some major areas of improvement that were seen in a majority of the essays and a round of kudos on certain jobs well done.
Remember, I grade these pieces of work, as though you were already in my class. I saw a ton of improvements from your book chat and essay #1, so “kudos” to you all. And, as always, remember, all the summer assignment grades are placed into the homework section of the gradebook (in a few months, you won’t even notice they are there).
Class Average on the essays: 73%
Now, assess yourself. Look over your grades, if your grades fall within five points of the class average, you are right on track. If your grades don’t, ask youself, “Why?”. Was it a lazy mistake: MLA formating, proofreading, etc. Or, was it content related? Assess your individual situations, look over my notes, and see how you can improve for the next assignment. Grades will be posted in ParentsWeb during the first week of school.
Major Areas of Improvement Needed in Almost all Essays:
- Watch sentence fluency, especially at the beginning of sentences. In one paragraph, no two sentences should start the same. For example.. I went to the store. I went shopping. I went home.
- As mentioned last time… be careful of the ambiguous “We” or “You”. Why? #1. it is technically first person, and there should be no first person in your essays. But, since we are Honors English students, we know that those pronouns can also be Third Person Limited Narrative. So, sometimes they are okay… but, #2. Who are you talking about? For example, “We know that everyone believes that God is real.” Who is we? Who is everyone? Explain yourselves. Use Word Choice.
- Make sure the details in your essay are correct. Need I say more?
- Qualify your statements: you cannot just throw sentences in your essay and have them mean something. Give your argument a backbone and let it soar to success.
A Round of Kudos
- You are all doing much better, staying away from summary… Just make sure to keep pushing the analysis and asking … Why?
- Our written “Voice” is sounding stronger… keep it up.
- There was a lot of great insight in the essays and in the forums… way to go!
These are some comments that I wrote on essays… If it pertains to you… great. If it does not… great too.
- Answer the prompt. Make sure you don’t leave it behind. Two of the three essay prompts asked you to tell how that character or trait affected the overall novel… that was missed almost every single time. So, when you are looking at the characterization of a character… look at the novel as a whole
- Some of the similarity reports were through the roof. Remember we are trying to keep it under 20%. So, don’t rely so heavily on quotes.
- You want to use your quotes as spring boards into analysis. Now, what does that mean? It means, that if you are going to use a full quote… then TALK about it afterwards. Many quotes appear just thrown into the essay. I can see that look of relief on your face as you think…. WHEW, I got my quote quota in. If you can say it better… say it. Don’t let quotes anchor you down.
- Write in present tense.
Just like last time, I will offer 10% to your essay if you turn in a reflection assignment. Assignment is posted on Turn it In. And, due at midnight before the first day of school.
The test will be in week two. Enjoy your last full days of summer vacation and I will see you in your seats in just a few short moments. Let the school year begin!