In the end, this genre study approach might not seem that drastically different than the more traditional teacher-directed five paragraph lesson approach.
After all, both are filled with discussion of theses, hooks, quotes, and topic sentences.
So far, it likely seems pretty similar to what they’ve done before, but then I throw a twist at them:. Why do a lot of teachers tell students to put a thesis at the end of the introduction? This is pushed further by the next question, which goes…
Suddenly, the students are asked weird questions like can an essay be clear if a thesis doesn’t go in the introduction (yes) or could starting with a first-person story be an acceptable technique to grab attention in academic pieces (yes as well).
The rationale is–and I recognize that this is controversial–that there are some very good reasons why teachers teach the five-paragraph essay.
One of these is captured by Sheppard is right that writing is not natural.There is a reason the five-paragraph form endures but there is also a reason it is so widely criticized.Further, there is a major issue that professor Kathleen Dudden Rowlands lays out in her article “Slay the Monster” from the English Journal: If we do decide to kill the five-paragraph essay, what should go in its place?As a writing teacher, one of the most common questions I’m asked is how do I handle the five-paragraph essay.If I’m being honest, until relatively recently, I tried my best to avoid this question, as discussion of the five-paragraph essay is the writing instruction equivalent of talking about politics at Thanksgiving.Not only are the jars unyielding to the touch, but even their number and order are fixed. I’ve written previously about how students generally focus on whatever we focus on.There are five of them, which, according to the recipe, need to be filled in precise order. This means that if most of the instruction heading into an essay is about the five-paragraph form and the rubric assigns the most points to following the form, then the message sent to students is that form is what matters most.Thinking, language usage, and the force of argument are all secondary considerations Now, based on this so far, you might not think there is much of a debate going on in my head.Why would I offer any support for something that I just said contributes to flavorless prose and diminished thinking? Listening lesson plans with mp3 files also available. 25 smart cloud-based worksheet generators for making fun, effective lesson materials. Use coupon code "ESLPR" on registration for discount!