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Informal Essay Example by kdr39189

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									                       English Language Arts A30
                                Module 1
                               Assignment 3

English Language Arts A30                          Assignment 3
English Language Arts A30   Assignment 3
Assignment Three

      A.     Responding to Essays

             An essay is a piece of prose writing in which ideas on a single topic are
             presented, explained, argued, or described in an interesting way. Essays can
             be divided roughly into the categories of formal and informal.

             A formal essay:
              is impersonal, written by a knowledgeable author.
              is informative, explanatory.
              is developed in a logical and systematic way.

             An informal essay:
              is meant to entertain.
              is conversational in style.
              reveals the personality of the author.

             The topic of an informal essay is limited only by the personal choice of the
             writer. The treatment of the subject, the style, and tone all reflect the
             writer’s personality. It is his personal approach to the subject that makes the
             informal essay often as entertaining as a letter from a friend.

             Although an informal essay may appear to meander from one topic to
             another, it is unified through theme and the writer’s attitude to the subject
             of the essay. The theme, though usually unstated, is so central to the essay
             that the reader can easily identify it.

(2)          1.     Circle one of the choices below.

             “Native People Finally Claim Their Culture” is a(n) informal or formal essay?




English Language Arts A30                                                     Assignment 3
                    Evidence from the essay to support your reasons.



(2)          2.     In a sentence or two, give your first response to “Native People Finally
                    Claim Their Future.”

(2)          3.     In sentence form, state the theme of “Native People Finally Claim
                    Their Future.”

(2)          4.     In sentence form, discuss the tone of “Native People Finally Claim
                    Their Future.”

(6)          5.     In his essay, Cuthand makes reference to a number of reserves.
                    Explain what happened to the Last Mountain Reserve, the
                    Thunderchild Reserve, the Pheasant Rump and Ocean Man Reserves.

English Language Arts A30                                                     Assignment 3
(4)          6.     After some reflection, answer the following questions based on
                    Cuthand’s essay.
                     What was the impact of the Indian Act and the Soldier Settlement
                        Act on the Native People’s of Saskatchewan in the early part of
                        the 20th century?

                        According to Cuthand what is being done to correct the injustices
                         resulting from the loss of land in the 20th century?

                    A pun is the humourous use of two words that have the same or
                    similar sounds but different meanings, or the witty use of a word in
                    two senses. For example, “The first thing that strikes a tourist coming
                    to our province is the rocks.”

             A pun is sometimes unjustly considered a low form of humour, but if a pun is
             imaginative and fresh, it can add colour and a bit of the unexpected to a
             piece of writing. Shakespeare used puns to great effect in a number of his
             plays. Riddles are often based on puns such as this one.

                    Q.      Why couldn’t the animals play cards on the Ark?
                    A.      Because Noah sat on the deck.

                    Puns can also be found in comic strips in newspapers and magazines.

(4)          8.     Find two examples of puns in newspapers, magazines, or in other
                    materials available to you. You can copy them out in the space
                    below or send in the original examples.

English Language Arts A30                                                         Assignment 3
       B.    Writing the Essay

             1.     Pre-writing

                    A personal essay is an informal essay written in a conversational style
                    and usually from a first-person point of view. When writing a
                    personal essay you need to go beyond just telling about events or
                    experiences. You need to explore the significance of an event or
                    experience and offers a perspective on it.

                    In a personal essay, at least three paragraphs in length, support or
                    refute one of the following statements. Your essay may have a
                    serious or humorous tone.

                            Rural Saskatchewan people are the most interesting people in

                            Canadians television shows have no sense of humour.

                            Canada is an imitation of the United States.

                    Support means to argue in favour of something; refute
                    means to argue against something or to prove an assertion
                    to be in error. Examples, quotations, and statistics help
                    you to support or to refute a statement.

 (3)                In writing your essay, use the following steps.

                    a.      Write a purpose statement indicating your intent to the

                    My purpose is to _________________________________________
                    so that my reader________________________________________

English Language Arts A30                                                     Assignment 3
                      Use the webbing technique in your pre-writing phase to generate
                      and gather ideas about your topic.

                      c.    The following organizer will help you sort out your argument.


             Reason                                      Evidence

             Reason                                      Evidence

             Reason                                      Evidence

English Language Arts A30                                                      Assignment 3
                    d.      Choose a method of arrangement.

                    e.      Use an outline or a tree diagram to show how you will put your
                            ideas together.

             2.     Writing the First Draft

                    a.      In the space provided on the next two pages write your first
                            draft. In your first draft the focus is on content and clarity of
                            ideas. Spelling and mechanics are not important in the first

                    b.      Double-space your first draft so that you have space to make
                            corrections and revisions.

                    c.      Provide an interesting and suitable title for your essay.

(4)          Write your first draft on the following pages.

English Language Arts A30                                                          Assignment 3
English Language Arts A30   Assignment 3
English Language Arts A30   Assignment 3
(5)          3.     Revising the First Draft

             If possible, it is a good idea to leave your first draft alone for awhile after
             writing it. After a few hours, or even better a day or two, you can come back
             to it with fresh eyes and the revision process will seem less onerous. To
             make revisions to your first draft use a different coloured pen than the one
             you used to write your first draft. This will make it easier for you to see what
             you want to change.

             Listed below is a self-assessment checklist to help you edit and proofread
             your first draft. The evaluation of your essay by your teacher will be based
             on the criteria listed in the self-assessment guide.

             Content and organization

                   Does your introductory sentence grab your reader’s attention?
                   Does your introductory paragraph clearly establish the topic of your
                   Are your ideas arranged in a logical order?
                   Is there sufficient and appropriate evidence to defend your position?
                   Is your concluding paragraph effective in that it wraps up the points
                    made in the body of your essay?
                   Is your tone, either humorous or serious, consistent?
                   Does your essay have an interesting and suitable title?

             Sentence structure, spelling, mechanics and presentation

                   Are your sentences clear and complete?
                   Have you used transitional devices to make your essay coherent to
                    your reader?
                   Are your sentences punctuated correctly?
                   Are your words colourful and expressive?
                   Are all your words spelled correctly?
                   Is the verb tense consistent throughout the essay?
                   Is the overall appearance of the essay pleasing?

             Teacher Comments

English Language Arts A30                                                      Assignment 3
(15)         4.     Presentation

English Language Arts A30          Assignment 3
English Language Arts A30   Assignment 3
      C.     Responding to Poetry

(4)          1.     In a sentence or two give your first response to reading the
                    poem in Lesson Three, “I am a Canadian”

(3)          2.     Duke Redbird’s poem is written from the first person point of view. In
                    two or three sentences, say why this point of view is effective.

(3)          3.     In a sentence or two, state one theme of the two poems.

                    “I am a Canadian”

(2)          4.     State the tone of Redbird’s poem and tell how he achieved this tone
                    in his poem. Use sentence form.

(3)          5.     What is a country – the land or the people? Does the country make
                    the citizen or do the citizens make the country. In one or two
                    sentences tell what Redbird’s poem says about these two questions.

English Language Arts A30                                                   Assignment 3
      D.     Creating a poem of your own

             In this exercise you will use your imagination and creativity to write a poem
             about Canadian identity. Writing a poem is a creative process, and you can
             employ the same writing strategies you use when writing a paragraph or an

             Although writing a poem is a creative writing process, you can still use the
             strategies of pre-writing, drafting, revising (proofreading and editing) before
             presenting your poem for your audience. You need to think about the
             following aspects.

                topic
                rhyme
                rhythm
                form – the look of the poem on the page
                diction
                figurative language and literary devices

             Narrowing the Topic

             The topic of your poem is Canadian identity. This topic is far too broad; you
             will need to narrow it to a manageable size. You can use any one of the
             prewriting techniques to help you narrow the very broad topic of Canadian
             identity to some aspect of this subject that is meaningful to you. Deciding on
             a theme for your poem will also be helpful in narrowing your topic. What
             idea, general truth or commentary on life or people do you want to convey
             to your reader?

English Language Arts A30                                                      Assignment 3

             Maybe the melody of a song or ballad will serve well as a rhythm for you to

             Another method would be to use the same rhythm in your poem as the
             rhythm used in one of the poems in this course. “Heat,” and “Moon-Songs”
             have rhythms and stanza forms that would be excellent to imitate.

             You may wish to use free verse as Marilyn Dumont has done in her poem
             “Not Just a Platform for My Dance.” Remember, however, that your poem
             should still have deliberate rhythmic effects. Free verse is not just prose that
             is arranged in an odd way. Dumont’s poem is very good evidence for this


             Roses aren’t red
             Violets aren’t blue
             If you think poems have
                 to rhyme
             Think again

             Many poets do not use regular rhyme schemes. Some do. Decide on what
             pattern of rhyme you will follow if you plan to use a regular rhyme scheme.
             If you use free verse, you might want to include some rhyme for special

             For help with rhyme and rhyme schemes see the “Poetry” section of your
             English Language Arts Ready Reference.

             The Form: the look of the poem on the page.

             The look of the poem may be controlled by the rhythm you have chosen. If
             you are imitating “Heat” or “Moon-Songs,” your poem will likely have a look
             or stanza form that is similar to the poem you have imitated.

             If you write a poem in free verse, you need to think carefully about how to
             handle punctuation and spaces. For example, Duke Redbird’s poem has only
             one comma and one period. In Archibald Lampman’s poem the punctuation
             is very important and is vital to the meaning of the poem.

English Language Arts A30                                                      Assignment 3
             The form of the poem is based on specific reasons. A poem is not a
             haphazard creation. Creating a poem is a very thoughtful process.


             Diction (word choice) is an important aspect of literature. Of all types of
             literature, poetry is perhaps the most reliant on effective diction for its
             success. This is because poetry is usually a short, condensed form of writing.
             Therefore, every word counts in creating the effect the poet desires.

             It is important to choose the exact word you need to create the effect you
             want. A thesaurus or a dictionary can help you in this task, as well as your

             Figurative Language and Literary Devices

             Nearly all poems contain figurative language such as similes, metaphors or
             personification. Most contain some literary devices, such as parallelism or
             alliteration. Reread the poems you have studied so far in this course and see
             how the poets have used both figurative language and literary devices in
             their poems. Try to include at least one example of figurative language and
             one literary device in your poem. Should you need more help with figurative
             language and literary devices see your English Language Arts Ready
             Reference, both the “Poetry” section and the “Glossary” section.

             Note: You may use any of the poems you have read for this course as
             models for your poem. You are also free to use your imagination to create a
             poem that is uniquely yours.

             Presenting your poem

             Use your own paper to write your poem. Be sure to attach it to this
             assignment upon submission.

English Language Arts A30                                                     Assignment 3
(20)         Your poem will be evaluated as follows.

          Requirements                                 Teacher's Comments
          Poem conveys a clear idea
          about a single topic.

          Rhythm is appropriate to the
          topic of the poem.

          Rhyme (if used) suits the
          rhythm and topic of the


          Free Verse (if used) is
          appropriate to the topic of
          the poem.

          Form is pleasing and helps
          convey meaning.

          Diction: Choice of words is
          appropriate. The words are
          specific and well-suited to
          the topic.

          At least one example of
          effective figurative language.

          At least one use of a literary
          Spelling is correct

          Punctuation (if used) is

          Overall appearance of poem
          is pleasing.

English Language Arts A30                                                   Assignment 3
(16)   D.    Building Vocabulary

             It is important to know literary terminology so that you can think, speak, and
             write in knowledgeable ways about literature. Knowing these terms and
             what they mean will also enhance your listening skills. Should you need help
             with any of the literary terms in the following exercise, consult the
             “Glossary” section of your English Language Arts Ready Reference.

             Magic Square: How Well Do You Know Literary Terms?

             Directions: Select from the numbered statements the best answer for each of the
             literary terms. Put the number in the proper space in the magic square box. The
             total of the numbers will be the same across each row and down each column.

             Literary Terms                                         Statements

             a.   alliteration                   1.    mental pictures created by words
             b.   symbol                         2.    a writer’s attitude toward a subject
             c.   theme                          3.    poetry which tells a story
             d.   stanza                         4.    a group of poetry lines arranged according to
             e.   tone                                 a plan
             f.   metaphor                       5.    a specific thing that stands for an idea or
             g.   personification                      values
             h.   lyric poetry                   6.    exaggeration for effect
             i.   narrative poetry               7.    inanimate objects are given human attributes
             j.   simile                         8.    saying one thing but meaning another
             k.   hyperbole                      9.    a general truth brought out through a piece of
             l.   diction                              literature
             m.   free verse                     10.   a comparison introduced by like or as
             n.   irony                          11.   an indirect comparison
             o.   euphony                        12.   pleasantness of sound
             p.   imagery                        13.   poetry with no regular rhyme or rhythm
                                                 14.   poetry that focuses on emotion
                                                 15.   choice of words
                                                 16.   repetition of the same initial letter in two or
                                                       more words close to one another

             Answer Box          A    B      C         D

                                 E    F      G         H

                                 I    J      K         L              Magic number = _____

                                 M   N       O         P

English Language Arts A30                                                            Assignment 3

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