Persuasive writing: Improving my scores Mrs. Henry, why did I lose points?

Mrs. Henry, why did I lose points?
Persuasive writing:
Improving my scores!
Check your TONE
• Remember ethos, pathos, logos!
• ****** Avoid HOSTILE tone *******
“This is the worst idea ever!”
“This will lead to student anxiety, clinical depression
and teenage suicide.”
“You are the best principal ever and whatever you
choose will bring us students much happiness and
joy because you care.”
Strength of reasons
• Were your three reasons DIFFERENT enough, or
did you just elaborate on the same basic idea in
different words?
– We won’t be able to sit next to our friends.
– We won’t be able to talk to our friends.
– Friends will be at different tables, so we can’t talk.
What would have helped???
The last I checked, Mr. Coster was
Assistant Principal…
• Make sure you keep your audience in mind!
• Avoid YOU/WE…instead, use collective nouns
– Students
- Faculty members
– Teenagers
- Residents
– Adolescents
- Citizens
– Children
- Community members
– The student body – Teachers
– Parents
- Adults
Have a thesis? Or just random pieces?
• Thesis?
• ONE single, CLEARLY worded sentence which
contains mention of your 3 reasons
• WHERE does it go again???
– 2 places….?
One Two Three Four
FIVE paragraphs!
• Timed essays = FIVE paragraphs
… always!
Intro paragraph
Body paragraph 1 = focus on reason 1
Body paragraph 2 = focus on reason 2
Body paragraph 3 = focus on reason 3
Conclusion paragraph
Paragraph breaks -- indent
•Paper is LINED to help you ALIGN your writing.
•CLEARLY indent paragraphs 1 – 2” on the left
side. The rest of the body paragraph should hug
the vertical guideline on the paper!
•Avoid one huge, long, uninterrupted stretch of
Within each paragraph, ELABORATE
TOPIC SENTENCE followed by details!
For each of your three reasons,
Supporting anecdote
Facts to support your reasons
• Smooth the way between body paragraphs and
• One reason
• A second reason
• A third reason
• In conclusion
Transition words: period 7
• Craft a more fluid transition:
One reason
A second reason
A third reason
In conclusion
One consideration is that…
Another compelling reason is…
Perhaps most significant is….
In summary, …
Style considerations:
• Don’t ASK questions of your reader!
• Your job is to establish credibility as a writer – you
are the one ANSWERING the question at hand, not
ASKING them!!!
• “Do you think students should be free to select
their friends?”  NO!
• BETTER: “As adolescents, students are gaining
independence and should be free to form
Students should be able to choose their lunch seats because it…
• ( TW) Encourages development of communication
– Needed skill for teens; more comfortable talking with
friends; common interests
• ( TW) Provides an opportunity to relieve stress
– Friends may be in different classes; cannot talk in class;
relaxed lunchroom atmosphere.
• ( TW) Alleviates anxiety for new students
– Will not be alone at lunch time; promotes new