Literacy Narrative

Literacy Narrative

Following the examples of the readings completed for this class, write your personaL story about a significant event
or a succession of related events in your liFE when you learned some new skills or gained new useful life experience(s)
that fostered your academic or professional development

.
For example, in the first two articles that you have read for this class, the authors discuss
the power of language, the way we change ourselves depending on who is in front of us, the role of education in our lives
, and some other themes. Find such important theme related to your life experience that you want to share with your
audience and develop this theme as an idea

. Develop your essay around this idea which will become your
thesis. Explain and support your
thesis/idea
in a sequence of paragraphs
using various
related
examples
.
Read more about
thesis
in

A Writer

s Reference.

Engage your reader
s
with an interesting
introduction
.
To get your readers interested in your story, you
could try out one of the following ways, but do not limit yo
ur choice to these
c
lues
because
y
ou may invent
your own unique way that
would work to launch your story:
?
a compelling graphic description of the place or a person
;
?
a startling specific narrat
ive action you or someone else took that would surprise readers and
arouse curiosity
;
?
a telling bit of dialogue
;
?
your present reflections on your past self or on the context of the event
;
?
an interesting or provocative question;
?
an engaging humorous or con
troversial observation.
After the introduction, the proceeding paragraphs (known as the “
body” of the essay
) should be used to
support the thesis.  The opening sentence or sentences of each body paragraph should clarify
to your reader
how you transition f
rom one paragraph to the next. The
topic sentence
of each paragraph must clearly
show
how this paragraph supports the thesis
/the main idea of your essay.
Read more about
topic sentence
in

A Writer

s Reference.

Notice that
“sequence of paragraphs”
does not mean “five paragraph essay”.  While your essay should h
ave
an identifiable beginning, middle and end, you are not bound by the number of paragraphs.  Broadly
speaking,
this essay should be between two and three pages long (2

3 pages).
Each body paragraph
should contain some form of
support
(one support per
paragraph).  Support can come
in many forms:
?
Personal observations and/or personal experience
;
?
Current events/happenings covered by the media
;
?
Historical references
;
?
Quotes and paraphrases from supporting texts
.
Good supports
will provide
?
details
(about people, place(s), objects, feelings, and other things that could possibly be observed
with all your senses at the time of the event and now recalled from that time; you may
also
opt
to
incorporated short dialogues / brief conversations related to th
e event
(s)
;
?
connections
between people involved directly or indirectly in the event
(s)
; between place(s),
object(s), etc.; between the past event and your present

possibly different

perspective
at this
event
;
2
?
significance
of the event
without mo
ralizing
. In this essay, your purpose is not to give a lesson to
others. You rather reflect and look back into your own life experience to make a meaning of what
happened then and satisfy your curiosity of why you still remember this event
and how differen
tly
you look at or
react to it now comparing to the moment/time when it happened.
Tell your story formally
. That means:
?
t
o be aware of your audience: a large group of college

aged adults interested in your topic but
potentially unfamiliar with it
;
?
t
o avo
id informality such as slang, profanity, cont
ractions and explanation points;
?
t
o write in an organized way; to structure your thoughts so that they build on one another and
support a
central idea
;
?
t
o write within an academic format, specifically MLA form
at (see
attachment to
this handout:
an
example 1
st
page
).
Also, find the
MLA Guidelines for an Essay Formatting
posted in the Blackboard.
Finally, your paper should
conclude
with a few closing sentences
.
The
conclusion
should not merely be a
restatement of your thesis.  That’s boring and obvious. Instead, the conclusion should inspire your reader to
keep thinking about your essay’s idea even when he or she is done reading.  This can be done in many ways,
but a few sugge
stions include:
?
Considering how the idea you’ve chosen to discuss might change as time progresses, either
positively or negatively;
?
Considering the impact your idea has on larger society;
?
Proposing a solution if you’ve presented your idea as a problem;
?
A
sking an open

ended question related to your idea.
The size of this essay
will be
2

3 pages (500

750 words).
The essay must be
typed, double spaced,
in
Times New Roman, Font 12
.
The essay will be evaluated according to the following criteria
:
?
Does
the essay have an
introductory paragraph
?
?
Is that paragraph both clear in its build up to a
thesis
, and does it
engage the reader
?
?
Does the introductory paragraph have an
identifiable thesis
?
?
Is that thesis clearly a statement worthy of further discussion?
?
Is that thesis relevant/meaningful to a reading audience?
?
Has the writer clearly broken down the thesis into
meaningful paragraphs
?
?
Are those paragraphs
supported
by substantial examples and further discussion?
?
Does the essay have a
concluding paragrap
h
?
?
Is the conclusion thought

provoking or merely a restatement of the proceeding paragraphs?
And in terms of style and mechanics:
?
Has the writer followed MLA guidelines for formatting (see the final page of this handout)?
?
Has the writer used language
appropriate for an academic audience (i.e. formal)?
?
Has the writer refrained from using dull and/or vague language?
?
Is the essay mostly free from minor punctuation and/or grammatical errors?
Submission of the
Literacy
Narrative Essay
:
Draft
of the
essay
d
ue on
September 10
:
a hard/paper copy
for
in

class
review
.
This draft must be a full

size
(2

3 pages) completed essay, appropriately structured and formatted and edited to the best of your
abilities.
Essay 1
due on
September 17
:
essays
will
be collected
at the beginning of the class.
Reminder
: To complete the policy of the required
four (4
) tutoring sessions at the CSU
Writing Center
before the midterm
(week of
October 15
), take
at least two (2)
drafts of your Narrative Essay to the Writing
Center. Sche
dule two (2) tutoring sessions as explained in the course syllabus on page 1.