Analysis Through Narrative Essay-Personal Experience
Most of us can easily recall the facts surrounding a memory of a summer vacation or the first day of work at an after school job. In turn, most of us can communicate those facts in writing in the order in which they happened; however, it is far more difficult to examine and explain what impact key experiences in our lives have had on us. How have they shaped us and influenced our behavior or perspective today?
The activities in this unit will help students improve the skills necessary to compose a two – three page analysis through narrative essay. The unit emphasizes the process of analyzing information rather than merely reporting it and encourages students to move into the realm of higher-order thinking by challenging them to draw conclusions about the value of a personal experience. The essay’s thesis identifies a conclusion the student has drawn based on his or her careful reflection of an experience or observation. The body and concluding paragraphs support the thesis, utilizing one or more of the common modes of development to convey a concise message to a specific audience.
First, many students seem to have a fear or repulsion of writing and they are intimidated by writing for a college setting. This first paper will allow you to write within your comfort zone about a topic with which you are familiar. The key is not to choose a subject that you are too emotionally traumatized by. For instance, don’t write about your parents’ divorce if it brings back memories that are too sad to deal with. Academic writing needs to be objective; that is, it must present a logical “voice” that doesn’t make unfair judgments about the subject matter. Can you see the difference here? The first sentence is an actual example from a student’s essay draft a few years ago.
•Inappropriate: My b—–d of a father abandoned my mom and my sister when I was 8 and I hope he rots in hell.
•Appropriate: In 1995, my father left our family for reasons I have never quite understood. The impact of his decision has haunted us since the day he walked out of our lives. Second, this paper will challenge your higher order thinking skills essential for workplace writing. You will not merely summarize the story, which is lower order thinking; you will have to analyze and evaluate this experience and find meaning in it.
The View From Above
How is it that when something happens to change our perspective of the world, it may take years to slowly percolate through our consciousness? I experienced this change of world view courtesy of a very small airplane. My father used to own and fly a private plane which he kept at the Sedalia airport. Nighttime was when I most enjoyed flying. I often wondered at the amount of preparation it took before climbing up the single step on the landing gear and fastening the seat belt…
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