Writing the Exposition for a Personal Narrative

Writing the Exposition for
a Personal Narrative
Students will use lead techniques to write a rough draft
of the exposition to their personal narrative.
Your Goals
To grab the reader’s attention using a lead
To provide context by introducing main characters,
setting up the conflict, and establishing the setting
Goal #1: Grab the reader’s
In order to meet this goal, you will need to use a lead.
On the following slides are examples of lead
Goal #2: Provide
In order to meet this goal you must:
Introduce main characters
Set up the conflict
Establish the setting
The setting may be specific (Lincoln) or more general (front yard)
Lead Technique: Describe the
Describe the setting of the story – when and where the story
occurs. Use the description to set the mood of the story
Example: (lead) For seven years there had been too little
rain. The prairies were dust. Day after day, summer after
summer, the scorching winds blew the dust, and the sun was
brassy in the yellow sky. Crop after crop failed.
(*context) I could tell Ma and Pa were worried. Like our
neighbors, the drought had caused our food supplies to
become dangerously low.
• Rose Wilder Lane
Lead Technique: Introduce
Someone in the Story
Introduce someone in the story – Tell about a person to build
interest, characterization, and plot.
Example: (lead) If the motorcycle was huge, it was nothing to
the man sitting astride it. He was almost twice as tall as a
normal man and five times as wide…He had hands the size of
trashcan lids, and his feet in their leather boots were like baby
(*context) Hagrid had arrived to take Harry Potter to
Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. This
announcement was incredibly exciting to Harry. Harry was
currently living with the Dursley’s, his aunt and uncle. They
had been forced to take in Harry after the death of his parents
and made it apparent to Harry that they found this obligation
a nuisance.
-J.K. Rowling
Lead Technique: Set-Up Lead
Set-Up Lead – Set up the action for the whole story in
a few sentences.
Example: (lead and context together) In October, 1896,
I entered the Cambridge School for Young Ladies to be
prepared for Radcliffe. The freedom was exhilarating,
but I was also nervous about being on my own for the
first time. As I pushed open the heavy wooden doors, I
sensed my life was about to change forever.
- Helen Keller
Lead Technique: Ask a
Ask a Question: Use a question to provoke thought and
Example: (lead) Have you ever done something stupid because
of a dare? Take it from me, not only is it a bad idea, but it can
have long lasting negative consequences.
(context) It was a warm Saturday morning when my friends
and I decided to go swimming. Shortly after we arrived my best
friend, Sarah, started doing dives off the high board.
“Come on, Jenny,” she said to me, “go off the high board with
me. You can do it.” I hesitated, looking up at the turquoise
rectangle which suspended mid-air in the sky. “I dare you,” she
Rough Drafting Your Personal
Narrative Exposition
Use your organizer to write TWO versions of your
exposition using two of the given strategies. For
example, you might write one version using strategy A
(describing the setting) and one version using strategy
C (set-up leads).