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Eng. 10: Current Worksheet November 7, 2001

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English 10: Essays 
Four Ways to Begin 

November 7, 2001

Beginning an essay is a bit of an art. Here are four techniques for writing an introduction for an essay with the thesis, "Children today face difficult and confusing issues as they grow up."

Technique One: Relate your topic to recent news.

It is only two years ago that two students shot and killed their classmates at Columbine High School. Though an extreme example, personal conflicts and social issues of school are very much on the minds of our children. It isn't easy being young today. [thesis]

Technique Two: Justify your qualifications to write the essay.

As a parent of a 13 and 15 year old children, and as a teacher who has read widely on child development, I find it interesting to observe children as they grow up and mature. What I see bothers me a great deal. Growing up seems more difficult these days. [thesis]

Technique Three: Use an anecdote or incident to begin your paragraph.

Recently, my son went out to the suburbs to visit his friend. While there, a group of kids in a car threw eggs at he and his friends. How should he react to such an action, especially considering that recently a young man was shot at the bus stop in the same community? There are no easy answers. [thesis]

Technique Four: Use a striking contrast between common ideas and your topic.

Many of us look back fondly on our childhood. We may think of it as a safe and easy time where we had little responsibility and few worries. It seems to me we have forgotten the truth about childhood: it is a dangerous time, filled with difficulty, ambiguity, and hardship. Today it is even more so, and nothing is simple for today's young people. [thesis]


Use the thesis for your essay on cheating. Write three introductions that end with the same thesis (do not use the anecdote as we have practiced it before). Write about 75 words or so, including the thesis.

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