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Response to Literature Essay Writing Flowers for Algernon Model

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Title: Response to Literature Essay Writing Flowers for Algernon Model


1
Response to Literature Essay Writing Flowers
for Algernon Model
2
(No Transcript)
3
Introductory Paragraph -- Like a funnel, start
with a broad connection to the topic and then
hone in on your point (thesis).
Diagram
4
INTRODUCTORY PARAGRAPH the first paragraph in
your essay. Hook -- a creative beginning, meant
to catch your readers interest TAG -- an
acronym for title, author, and genre of the
work Background/Set-up/Brief summary -- provides
essential background about the literary work and
prepares the reader for your major thesis Thesis
Statement -- a sentence or two in your first
paragraph that presents your argument to the
reader, usually at the end of the paragraph
5
  • HOOK a creative beginning, meant to catch your
    readers interest. Ways of beginning creatively
    include the following
  • A startling fact or bit of information
  • 2) A snatch of dialogue between two characters
  • 3) A meaningful quotation (from the work or
    another source)
  • A universal idea
  • 5) A rich, vivid description of the setting
  • 6) An analogy or metaphor

6
Hook examples for Flowers for Algernon
No pig ever had truer friends, and Wilbur
realized that friendship is one of the most
satisfying things in the world. -- E. B. White
from Charlottes Web
Eager. Determined. Motivated. These three words
describe . . .
The power of knowledge is a dangerous thing.
7
More hook examples for Flowers for Algernon
Even a feeble-minded man wants to be like other
men, writes Charlie Gordon in . . .
According to a survey of seven notable
professions including fiction writers,
scientists, musicians, and soldiers, those with
the highest average IQ are philosophers.
8
TAG -- acronym for title, author, genre
No pig ever had truer friends, and Wilbur
realized that friendship is one of the most
satisfying things in the world (E. B. White from
Charlottes Web). Like Wilbur, Charlie Gordon
discovers who his true friends are in Flowers
for Algernon, an award-winning short story by
Daniel Keyes. (TGA)
9
TAG -- acronym for title, author, genre
Eager. Determined. Motivated. These three words
describe Charlie Gordon in Daniel Keyess short
story Flowers for Algernon. (AGT)
Even a feeble-minded man wants to be like other
men, writes Charlie Gordon in the short story
Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes. (GTA)
10
Background/Set-up/Brief summary -- provides
essential background about the literary work and
prepares the reader for your major thesis
Keep in mind that your audience (your teacher
or classmate) has read the literature however,
they have not analyzed it in the same way you
have.
Keep your summary BRIEF! (no more than four
sentences)
11
Background/Set-up/Brief summary
Example of a set-up The spiritual perfection
of man consists in his becoming an intelligent
king -- one who knows all that he is capable of
learning (philosopher Moses Maimonides). In the
short story Flowers for Algernon, the author
Daniel Keyes writes about a man with low
intelligence named Charlie who strives to become
the most intelligent he can be. Charlie wants to
be the perfect man who knows all that he can. He
will do almost anything including letting two
doctors perform brain surgery to enhance his
capability of learning. -- student, 8th
grade, RSM
12
Background/Set-up/Brief summary
Example of brief summary The power of
knowledge is a dangerous thing. In the short
story Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes,
Charlie Gordon, a mentally retarded
thirty-seven-year-old man, is chosen to take part
in an experiment to improve his intelligence.
Although the operation is a success and Charlies
IQ rapidly improves, the experiment has an
overall negative effect. . . . -- student,
8th grade, RSM
13
THESIS STATEMENT a sentence or two in your first
paragraph that presents your argument to the
reader, usually at the end of the paragraph
Note -- Some thesis statements are explicit,
hinting at what the two or three body paragraphs
will be about.
14
THESIS STATEMENT
Thesis statement The experiment to increase
Charlies intelligence was a bad idea.
Thesis statement (explicit) The experiment to
increase Charlies intelligence has an overall
negative effect because he loses all his friends
and suffers severe depression.
15
Thesis with 3 major reasons
Reason 1 discussed in this paragraph
Reason 2 discussed in this paragraph
Reason 3 discussed in this paragraph
Final thoughts
16
BODY the support paragraphs of your essay. These
paragraphs contain supporting examples (concrete
detail) and analysis/explanation (commentary) for
your topic sentences. Each paragraph in the
body includes (1) a topic sentence/support
thesis, (2) integrated concrete details/examples,
(3) commentary/explanation for details/examples,
and (4) a concluding sentence.
17
Body Paragraphs - two minimum
Begin with a topic sentence which supports the
major thesis statement from the introductory
paragraph. Be sure to include Concrete
details (quoted passages or
paraphrased facts from the
story) Commentary --
interpretation/elaboration Concluding sentence
-- to sum up or transition to the next paragraph
18
TOPIC SENTENCE the first sentence of a body
paragraph. It identifies one aspect of the major
thesis and states a primary reason why the major
thesis is true.
19
Because the operation changes his personality,
Charlie loses the only people he's ever come to
know and love. For example, when Charlie told
Mrs. Flynn, his landlady, to call in sick for
him, he wrote, "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very funny
lately like she's scared of me" (34). Mrs. Flynn
knows that Charlie has never missed a day of work
for any reason, so she knows that something has
been wrong with him. Because of this, she becomes
. . .
20
Besides losing all of his friends, Charlie
begins to go through depression when his
intelligence begins decreasing again. For
instance, when Algernon dies and Charlie did a
dissection on him, he found that the beloved
mouse had died because of complications with his
brain, and he wrote, "I guess the same thing is
or will be happening to me. Now that it's
definite, I don't want it to happen"(48). Charlie
knows now . . .
21
TRANSITIONAL/LEAD-IN phrase or sentence that
prepares the reader for a concrete detail by
introducing the speaker, setting, and/or
situation.
22
CONCRETE DETAIL a specific example from the work
of literature used to provide evidence for your
topic sentence/support thesis. Concrete detail
can be a combination of paraphrase and direct
quotation from the work.
23
T
Transition For example,
Lead-in when Charlie told Mrs. Flynn, his
landlady, to call in sick for him, he wrote,
L
Concrete Detail "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very
funny lately like she's scared of me" (34).
CD
QuoParPunc Quotation Mark, Parentheses,
Punctuation
24
Because the operation changes his personality,
Charlie loses the only people he's ever come to
know and love. For example, when Charlie told
Mrs. Flynn, his landlady, to call in sick for
him, he wrote, "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very funny
lately like she's scared of me" (34). Mrs. Flynn
knows that Charlie has never missed a day of work
for any reason, so she knows that something has
been wrong with him. Because of this, she becomes
scared of him and starts to avoid him, which
leaves him even more alone than ever. In addition
to losing Mrs. Flynn, Charlie also begins to lose
Miss Kinnian, his teacher and the love of his
life. When he begins to surpass her with his
knowledge, he says, "The thought of leaving her
behind makes me sad" (38). Miss Kinnian can no
longer teach Charlie anything because he is
gaining so much knowledge so quickly. This
thought pains Charlie deeply and makes him very
upset.
25
Transition In addition to losing Mrs. Flynn,

Lead-in Charlie also begins to lose Miss
Kinnian, his teacher and the love of his life,
when he begins to surpass her with his knowledge.
In his journal he says,
Concrete Detail "The thought of
leaving her behind makes me sad" (38).
QuoParPunc!!!
No Naked Quotes!!
26
Because the operation changes his personality,
Charlie loses the only people he's ever come to
know and love. For example, when Charlie told
Mrs. Flynn, his landlady, to call in sick for
him, he wrote, "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very funny
lately like she's scared of me" (34). Mrs. Flynn
knows that Charlie has never missed a day of work
for any reason, so she knows that something has
been wrong with him. Because of this, she becomes
scared of him and starts to avoid him, which
leaves him even more alone than ever. In addition
to losing Mrs. Flynn, Charlie also begins to lose
Miss Kinnian, his teacher and the love of his
life. When he begins to surpass her with his
knowledge, he says, "The thought of leaving her
behind makes me sad" (38). Miss Kinnian can no
longer teach Charlie anything because he is
gaining so much knowledge so quickly. This
thought pains Charlie deeply and makes him very
upset.
27
COMMENTARY your explanation and interpretation
of the concrete detail. Commentary tells the
reader what the author of the text means or how
the concrete detail proves the topic sentence and
supports the thesis. Commentary may include
interpretation, analysis, argument, insight,
and/or reflection.
28
Because the operation changes his personality,
Charlie loses the only people he's ever come to
know and love. For example, when Charlie told
Mrs. Flynn, his landlady, to call in sick for
him, he wrote, "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very funny
lately like she's scared of me" (34). Mrs. Flynn
knows that Charlie has never missed a day of work
for any reason, so she knows that something has
been wrong with him. Because of this, she becomes
scared of him and starts to avoid him, which
leaves him even more alone than ever. In addition
to losing Mrs. Flynn, Charlie also begins to lose
Miss Kinnian, his teacher and the love of his
life. When he begins to surpass her with his
knowledge, he says, "The thought of leaving her
behind makes me sad" (38). Miss Kinnian can no
longer teach Charlie anything because he is
gaining so much knowledge so quickly. This
thought pains Charlie deeply and makes him very
upset.
29
TIPS FOR WRITING COMMENTARY
These sentence starters put the writer into
commentary-mode This shows . . . This is because
. . . This means . . . This reveals . . . This
illustrates . . . This highlights the difference
between . . .
30
TIPS FOR WRITING COMMENTARY continued
This means the doctors knew all along that the
surgery would not be permanent, yet they chose to
hide this important fact from Charlie and Miss
Kinnian.
This shows that the doctors are selfish and
unethical in their medical practices they are
willing to risk Charlies life for personal gain.
This illustrates the difference between Miss
Kinnian and the doctors. She truly believes the
operation will benefit Charlie, and the doctors
know it will not.
Note As you become a more sophisticated
writer, you will not need these starter words.
31
CONCLUDING SENTENCE/CLINCHER last sentence of
the body paragraph. It concludes the paragraph by
tying the concrete details and commentary back to
the topic sentence and/or thesis statement.
32
Also, Charlie loses all of the people that he
knows from the factory. When they all sign a
petition to have him fired, he writes, "They've
driven me out of the factory. Now I'm more alone
than ever" (39). After leaving behind both Mrs.
Flynn and Miss Kinnian, the only people he knows
are the people at the factory where he works, but
they all want him fired. They basically kick him
out of the only place he knows that he can go to,
and now he's left alone in the world, with no one
to turn to or seek help from. The same thing is
happening to Charlie as Robinson Crusoe now that
he has been deserted and abandoned by everyone
he's ever known. -- 8th grade student, RSM
33
Suggested Outline for Body Paragraphs
Topic Sentence -- a major reason of support for
thesis statement. (TS) Transitional/Lead-in
to Concrete Detail 1 (TL)
Concrete Detail 1 (CD)
Commentary for CD1 (CM) Commentary for
CD1 (CM) Transitional/Lead-in to Concrete
Detail 2
Concrete Detail 2 Commentary for CD2
Commentary for CD2 Concluding sentence --
summarizes and transitions to next paragraph
34
Suggested Outline for Body Paragraphs
Topic Sentence -- a major reason of support for
thesis statement. (TS) Transitional/Lead-in
to Concrete Detail 1 (TL)
Concrete Detail 1 (CD)
Commentary for CD1 (CM) Commentary for
CD1 (CM) Transitional/Lead-in to Concrete
Detail 2
Concrete Detail 2 Commentary for CD2
Commentary for CD2 Concluding sentence --
summarizes and transitions to next paragraph
35
Because the operation changes his personality,
Charlie loses the only people he's ever come to
know and love. For example, when Charlie told
Mrs. Flynn, his landlady, to call in sick for
him, he wrote, "Mrs. Flynn looks at me very funny
lately like she's scared of me" (34). Mrs. Flynn
knows that Charlie has never missed a day of work
for any reason, so she knows that something has
been wrong with him. Because of this, she becomes
scared of him and starts to avoid him, which
leaves him even more alone than ever. In addition
to losing Mrs. Flynn, Charlie also begins to lose
Miss Kinnian, his teacher and the love of his
life. When he begins to surpass her with his
knowledge, he says, "The thought of leaving her
behind makes me sad" (38). Miss Kinnian can no
longer teach Charlie anything because he is
gaining so much knowledge so quickly. This
thought pains Charlie deeply and makes him very
upset. The same thing is happening to Charlie as
Robinson Crusoe now that he has been deserted and
abandoned by everyone he's ever known.
36
Concluding Paragraph
Echo your major thesis without repeating words
verbatim.
Then, broaden from the thesis to answer the so
what? question for your reader.
Reflect on how your topic relates to the book as
a whole, give your opinion of the novels
significance, or connect back to your creative
opening.
37
Thesis with 3 major reasons
Reason 1 discussed in this paragraph
Reason 2 discussed in this paragraph
Reason 3 discussed in this paragraph
Final thoughts
38
Credit PowerPoint by Anita Mattos April,
2006 Based in part on Poway Unified School
District A Guide to the Literary-Analysis Essay
which was based in part on Cobb Countys A
Guide to the Research Paper, Upland High
Schools Student Writers Handbook, and the MLA
Handbook for Writers of Research Papers.
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