Research paper assignment: censorship & banned books honors English II 2010



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RESEARCH PAPER ASSIGNMENT: CENSORSHIP & BANNED BOOKS

Honors English II 2010


Because All Quiet on the Western Front offers a gruesome portrayal of a war lost by the Germans, it infuriated Adolph Hitler, who ordered the book banned and destroyed throughout Germany. Many critics, however, consider it the best antiwar novel ever written.

J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye has been challenged in schools ever since its release and is still constantly on the ALA’s top ten list of most frequently challenged books. The Catcher in the Rye has been listed as one of the best novels of the 20th century. In June 2009, the BBC's Finlo Rohrer wrote that, 58 years since publication, the book is still regarded "as the defining work on what it is like to be a teenager. Holden is at various times disaffected, disgruntled, alienated, isolated, directionless, and sarcastic." Adam Gopnik of The New Yorker considers it one of the "three perfect books" in American literature, along with Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Great Gatsby, and believes that "no book has ever captured a city better than Catcher in the Rye captured New York in the forties".

In fact, come to think of it, many of the books you will read this year (and in subsequent years) have been banned in various places at various times. The ideal of intellectual freedom—the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular—provides the foundation for the successful reversal of bans and challenges. What some people consider harmful and trashy, others consider beautiful and thought-provoking—and often it is in schools where this battle between intellectual freedom and censorship takes place.

Is banning a book ever the right choice? How does one determine that a book’s value outweighs the potentially negative influences? Since we have been striving to answer the question, “What makes good literature?” as we read texts this year, it seems worthwhile to consider the question: What are the implications of censorship for society and the individual?

Thus, your task will be to research one other famous work of literature that is generally revered by critics but that has been banned or frequently challenged in schools. Each of you will choose a different novel—one that your parents are comfortable with you reading, one that is appropriate to your reading level (i.e. not Charlotte’s Web), one that you have not already read, and certainly not one we are reading in class—from the American Library Association’s list of Top 100 Banned or Challenged Books OR a classic from the ALA’s Banned and Challenged Classics list (see end of assignment).


  1. You will first investigate when, why, and by whom the book was banned as well as any attempts that were made to defend it. Evaluate the arguments for and against the work; this will require research. Examine book reviews and scholarly journals, as well as informal sources such as readers’ reviews (though keep in mind the criteria for good sources, which we will review—some nut on Amazon probably doesn’t qualify). A good place to start is the American Library Association site: http://www.ala.org/ala/issuesadvocacy/banned/index.cfm. We will discuss the proper way to use internet search engines to find and evaluate good sources, as well as review how to create MLA citations.




  1. You will definitely want to read the book for yourself (in other words, it is required). Take notes. You are evaluating the work’s merits and you are examining the work in terms of appropriateness for readers. What is the reading level? How do you know this? What objections (if any) do you have to the book? Is there anything that others would find objectionable? Explain.




  1. You will also investigate sources of praise (and criticism) of the literature in question. What have critics said in favor of it? What have the critics said against it? You will be considering the following question: What is the value of reading this controversial piece of literature?

This will be done (in part) by using resources such as ICONN and the UCONN library (yes, a field trip is in your future!). If you find an article online but cannot access it, see Mrs. Gillespie, who can often obtain these through interlibrary loan (or guide you through the process). DO NOT BECOME DISCOURAGED if you don’t find sources at first; often research is difficult and persistence pays off! ----------------------------------------Research Outline Check 11/24




  1. When your reading and research is complete, you should be able to formulate an informed opinion as to whether the work should be banned or whether it has value for young readers—and WHY. This should comprise your thesis (which we will spend time writing) and be the driving force of your essay. I do want to hear your opinion (although please do not break the commandments for scholarly papers), but I am especially interested in the opinions you found in the research, both for and against the book. We will discuss how to incorporate these “artfully” into your essay (six to eight pages, plus a Works Cited page) that will adhere to the correct MLA format and be relatively error-free. You must use at least five critical sources. Be sure to include the novel itself as an additional source. --------------------------------Final Paper Due 12/16; Draft to be submitted at least one week prior.




  1. Be prepared to present your report to the class for discussion at midterms!

And don’t worry! I will guide through every step of this process!

Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books: 2000-2009


1 Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling
2 Alice series, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
3 The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
4 And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell
*5 Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
6 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
7 Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
8 His Dark Materials (series), by Philip Pullman
9 TTYL; TTFN; L8R, G8R (series), by Myracle, Lauren
10 The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
11 Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers
12 It’s Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris
13 Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
*14 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
15 The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
16 Forever, by Judy Blume
17 The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
18 Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous
**19 Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
20 King and King, by Linda de Haan
**21 To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
22 Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily von Ziegesar
23 The Giver, by Lois Lowry
24 In the Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak
25 Killing Mr. Griffen, by Lois Duncan
26 Beloved, by Toni Morrison
27 My Brother Sam Is Dead, by James Lincoln Collier
28 Bridge To Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
29 The Face on the Milk Carton, by Caroline B. Cooney
30 We All Fall Down, by Robert Cormier
31 What My Mother Doesn’t Know, by Sonya Sones
32 Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
33 Snow Falling on Cedars, by David Guterson
34 The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler
35 Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging, by Louise Rennison
36 Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
37 It’s So Amazing, by Robie Harris
38 Arming America, by Michael Bellasiles
39 Kaffir Boy, by Mark Mathabane
40 Life is Funny, by E.R. Frank
41 Whale Talk, by Chris Crutcher
42 The Fighting Ground, by Avi
43 Blubber, by Judy Blume
44 Athletic Shorts, by Chris Crutcher
45 Crazy Lady, by Jane Leslie Conly
46 Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
47 The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby, by George Beard
48 Rainbow Boys, by Alex Sanchez
49 One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey
**50 The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
51 Daughters of Eve, by Lois Duncan
52 The Great Gilly Hopkins, by Katherine Paterson
53 You Hear Me?, by Betsy Franco
54 The Facts Speak for Themselves, by Brock Cole
55 Summer of My German Soldier, by Bette Green
56 When Dad Killed Mom, by Julius Lester
57 Blood and Chocolate, by Annette Curtis Klause
58 Fat Kid Rules the World, by K.L. Going
59 Olive’s Ocean, by Kevin Henkes
**60 Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson
61 Draw Me A Star, by Eric Carle
62 The Stupids (series), by Harry Allard
63 The Terrorist, by Caroline B. Cooney
64 Mick Harte Was Here, by Barbara Park
65 The Things They Carried, by Tim O’Brien
66 Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred Taylor
67 A Time to Kill, by John Grisham
68 Always Running, by Luis Rodriguez
**69 Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury
70 Harris and Me, by Gary Paulsen
71 Junie B. Jones (series), by Barbara Park
72 Song of Solomon, by Toni Morrison
73 What’s Happening to My Body Book, by Lynda Madaras
74 The Lovely Bones, by Alice Sebold
75 Anastasia (series), by Lois Lowry
76 A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving
77 Crazy:  A Novel, by Benjamin Lebert
78 The Joy of Gay Sex, by Dr. Charles Silverstein
79 The Upstairs Room, by Johanna Reiss
80 A Day No Pigs Would Die, by Robert Newton Peck
81 Black Boy, by Richard Wright
82 Deal With It!, by Esther Drill
83 Detour for Emmy, by Marilyn Reynolds
84 So Far From the Bamboo Grove, by Yoko Watkins
85 Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes, by Chris Crutcher
86 Cut, by Patricia McCormick
87 Tiger Eyes, by Judy Blume
88 The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood
89 Friday Night Lights, by H.G. Bissenger
90 A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeline L’Engle
91 Julie of the Wolves, by Jean Graighead George
92 The Boy Who Lost His Face, by Louis Sachar
93 Bumps in the Night, by Harry Allard
94 Goosebumps (series), by R.L. Stine
95 Shade’s Children, by Garth Nix
96 Grendel, by John Gardner
97 The House of the Spirits, by Isabel Allende
98 I Saw Esau, by Iona Opte
99 Are You There, God?  It’s Me, Margaret, by Judy Blume
100 America: A Novel, by Frank, E.R.

Banned and Challenged Classics


*1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
**
2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
3. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
**
4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
5. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
6. Ulysses by James Joyce
7. Beloved by Toni Morrison
8. The Lord of the Flies by William Golding
9. 1984 by George Orwell
10. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
11. Lolita by Vladmir Nabokov
*
12. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
13. Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
14. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce
15. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
16. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
**
17. Animal Farm by George Orwell
18. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
19. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
20. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway
21. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
22. Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne
23. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
24. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
25. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
26. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
27. Native Son by Richard Wright
28. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
29. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
30. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway
31. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
32. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
33. The Call of the Wild by Jack London
34. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
35. Portrait of a Lady by Henry James
36. Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin
37. The World According to Garp by John Irving
38. All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren
39. A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
40. The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
41. Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally
42. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
43. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
44. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce
45. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
46. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
47. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
48. Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D. H. Lawrence
49. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
50. The Awakening by Kate Chopin
51. My Antonia by Willa Cather
52. Howards End by E. M. Forster
53. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
54. Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger
55. The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
56. Jazz by Toni Morrison
57. Sophie’s Choice by William Styron
58. Absalom, Absalom! By William Faulkner
59. A Passage to India by E. M. Forster
60. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
61. A Good Man Is Hard to Find by Flannery O’Connor
62. Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
63. Orlando by Virginia Woolf
64. Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence
65. Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
66. Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
67. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
68. Light in August by William Faulkner
69. The Wings of the Dove by Henry James
70. **Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
71. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
72. A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
73. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
74. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
75. Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence
76. Look Homeward, Angel by Thomas Wolfe
77. In Our Time by Ernest Hemingway
78. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
79. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
80. The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
81. Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys
82. White Noise by Don DeLillo
83. O Pioneers! By Willa Cather
84. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
85. The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
86. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad
87. The Bostonians by Henry James
88. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
89. Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather
90. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
91. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
92. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
93. The French Lieutenant’s Woman by John Fowles
94. Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis
95. Kim by Rudyard Kipling
96. The Beautiful and the Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald
97. Rabbit, Run by John Updike
98. Where Angels Fear to Tread by E. M. Forster
99. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
100. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie

*= You will probably read this junior year **=We have/will be reading this year—so hands off!

DO NOT PICK SOMETHING FROM LAST YEAR (OR FOURTH GRADE!)

http://www.ala.org/ala/issuesadvocacy/banned/frequentlychallenged/index.cfm

http://www.ala.org/ala/issuesadvocacy/banned/frequentlychallenged/challengedclassics/index.cfm

RESEARCH PAPER ASSIGNMENT: CENSORSHIP & BANNED BOOKS



Use this to self-assess and revise your final product; there should be no surprises when you receive your grade!

Criteria Indicators

Beginning
The research paper is at a beginning stage.

Developing
The research paper could be improved in several ways.

Proficient
The research paper is acceptable.

Exemplary
The research paper is exemplary

Requirements

30

Papers that fail to meet the basic requirements will be deemed unacceptable and returned for correction; these will be considered late and incur a penalty. Furthermore, those papers that are submitted without a works cited page, without in-text citations, or with a preponderance of improper in-text citations will receive a ZERO. Plagiarism has been reviewed and will not be tolerated.

The 6-8 pages of QUALITY work must be neatly typed and 1.5-spaced in GHS formal paper format.

*Signature of parent/rubric sheet is turned in indicating approval of the book and acknowledgement of the rubric for the final essay.


Information Literacy
50

● Works cited/consulted sections contain an inadequate number of reliable sources or may have serious errors in format.

● Regular problems with citation occur and/or text is copied directly from sources without quotations in places.



● Works cited/consulted sections contain an adequate number of reliable sources but may have minor errors in format.

● Isolated problems with in-text citation format occur; paraphrasing may not vary sufficiently from the source text.



● Works cited/consulted accurately identify an adequate number (5) of reliable sources, one in print.

● The essay is written in the author’s own words and quotes denote outside information; documentation shows consistent citation.



● Works cited/consulted correctly identify a variety (5+) of very reliable sources, at least one of which is a print source.

● The essay is written in the author’s own words and makes effective use of quotations; documentation shows conscientious application of citing ethics.



Use of Source Material
50

● Piece is lacking information and/or information is largely inaccurate and irrelevant.

● Sources cited in the text are inappropriate OR are not meaningfully cited at all in defense of the thesis.



● Provides only basic information, some of which may be incorrect and/or irrelevant.

● Discussion incorporates support from some appropriate materials, but support may not be adequately specific or presented to support the thesis



● Provides partially complete, accurate, and relevant information; based on adequate research.

● Discussion is largely based on and refers to specific support from research in defense of the thesis.



● Provides complete, accurate, and relevant information from appropriate sources.

● Discussion is based firmly on extensive and careful research that supports (or supports indirectly through refutation) the thesis.



Thinking and
Communication of Ideas

40

● Demonstrates little understanding of the topic, discussing too few traits. No interpretation and analysis of the material.

● Reasons in support of thesis are not expressed clearly or supported by specific examples and/or explanation.



● Demonstrates some understanding of the topic, but with limited analysis and reflection on its implications.

● Reasons in support of thesis are not expressed clearly and examples, details, and explanations are lacking.



● Demonstrates a general understanding of the topic.

● Reasons in support of thesis are generally expressed clearly through adequate use of telling examples, details, or explanations.



● Demonstrates in-depth understanding and insight into the issue(s) under discussion, through careful analysis and reflection.

● Reasons in support of thesis are developed and expressed fully and clearly, using many appropriate examples, illustrative details, or explanations.



Presentation:

Internal and External Organization, Introduction,

Reflective Conclusion

80

● Background details are a random collection of information, unclear, or not related to the topic.

● Overall focus is vague or unclear. The thesis may be missing or unclear.


● Conclusion is abrupt and does not summarize main points or reflect on the topics. It fails to reconnect to the purpose of the essay.

● The written sections lack organizational devices, such as purposeful paragraphs and transitions.



● “Hook” or lead is overly predictable. Introduction explains the background, but may lack detail. 

● A focus for the essay is present overall, but may not be maintained; “thesis” states a basic position.


● Conclusion is recognizable and ties up almost all loose ends. Reflection is a simple restatement of the facts, limited to superficial generalizations.

● Organizational devices, such as paragraphs, sections, and transitions, are frequently missing, flawed, or purposeless.



● Introduction creates interest. Sufficient background information is provided. Topic is at least alluded to.

● Focus is maintained and “thesis” states the position.

● Conclusion effectively summarizes, establishing a connection between the evidence and the essay’s purpose. 

● There are some problems with organization, such as a few unfocused paragraphs or missing/weak transitions.



● Well-developed introduction engages the reader and creates interest. Contains detailed background information on the topic.

● Focus is clear; “thesis” states a significant and compelling position or belief that is the heart of the paper.


● Conclusion effectively wraps up and reflects—in detail—upon the importance of the thesis, thus extending the information & accomplishing the essay’s purpose.

● Organizational devices, such as paragraphs, *sections, and transitions, have been used effectively.



Voice/Fluency (word choice; use of first person)

25

● Overuses first person (“I” and “me”) and frequently breaks the first and second commandments of formal writing.

● Word choice is often inappropriate and sentence variety is nearly nonexistent.



● Overuses first person and occasionally breaks formal writing commandments.

● Word choice is clear but predictable. Writing is choppy or awkward because of problems with sentence structure and variety and/or a lack of transitions.



● Use of first person pronouns are unnecessary but infrequent; only one or two problems with commandments.

● Rhetorical choices are appropriate for the purpose of the essay and reveal an authorial voice.



● Use of first person pronouns “I” and “me” only when necessary—or never; the commandments are unbroken.

Word choice is sophisticated, clear, and appropriate for audience; variety of sentence structures and transitions helps vary usage. The author’s voice is authoritative and clear.



Mechanics
25

Constant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, and/or capitalization interfere with understanding.

Numerous errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, and/or capitalization distract from the flow of the writing.

There are several noticeable errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, and/or capitalization.

With minor exceptions, grammar, punctuation, spelling, and/or capitalization are correct.

Total Score: ________/300 Total Percentage: _________%


My book: Parent Signature:

RESEARCH PAPER ASSIGNMENT: CENSORSHIP & BANNED BOOKS



THE FINAL PAPER: Use the following outline to help you organize and check your paper for completion; check boxes are supplied for your to check off each portion as you complete it:


    1. Introduction: This is where you introduce the subject and purpose of the research paper and what the research will show about your topic.




      1.  Begin by providing some general background on censorship/book banning:

        1.  Explain what birth order is

        2.  Explain what birth order theory says

        3.  Explain how it works (for example…)




      1.  Then share your place in your family and share some the traits of that birth order which you have selected to discuss in your research paper.

        1.  Explain your birth order (first born, middle child, etc.)

        2.  Explain the names and ages of your siblings (or other pertinent family information that will help understand your birth order)

        3.  Explain some of the traits people of your birth order are said to have




      1.  This discussion will funnel down to your thesis, which would be along the lines of the following: “I believe birth order theory is (accurate/inaccurate); from my research and reflection, I have discovered that most of the characteristics of a ________ born child (apply/do not apply) to me.”




    1. Body: Explain each characteristic or trait of your birth order in explicit detail. Below is space for four traits; it is okay if you include more.




        1. First Trait

          1.  Include and cite information and DETAILS from each of your sources (using parenthetical citations) that explains:

            1.  What it means to have the trait

            2.  Why the trait applies to your particular birth order

          2.  Explain—in detail—how this trait does (or doesn’t) apply to you.

            1.  State whether this trait applies to you.

            2.  Explain how the trait applies to you

            3.  Prove it by describing one or two specific examples of how a person could recognize the trait from your behavior/feelings.

            4. *If the trait is not applicable to you, then try to explain why the trait would not apply to you using:

              •  Information from the research that might explain why not

              •  Personal explanations for why you might differ

              •  Examples that prove how your differ

        1. Second Trait

          1.  Include and cite information and DETAILS from each of your sources (using parenthetical citations) that explains:

            1.  What it means to have the trait

            2.  Why the trait applies to your particular birth order

          2.  Explain—in detail—how this trait does (or doesn’t) apply to you.

            1.  State whether this trait applies to you.

            2.  Explain how the trait applies to you

            3.  Prove it by describing one or two specific examples of how a person could recognize the trait from your behavior/feelings.

            4. *If the trait is not applicable to you, then try to explain why the trait would not apply to you using:

              •  Information from the research that might explain why not

              •  Personal explanations for why you might differ

              •  Examples that prove how your differ



        1. Third Trait

          1.  Include and cite information and DETAILS from each of your sources (using parenthetical citations) that explains:

            1.  What it means to have the trait

            2.  Why the trait applies to your particular birth order

          2.  Explain—in detail—how this trait does (or doesn’t) apply to you.

            1.  State whether this trait applies to you.

            2.  Explain how the trait applies to you

            3.  Prove it by describing one or two specific examples of how a person could recognize the trait from your behavior/feelings.

            4. *If the trait is not applicable to you, then try to explain why the trait would not apply to you using:

              •  Information from the research that might explain why not

              •  Personal explanations for why you might differ

              •  Examples that prove how your differ

        1. Fourth Trait

          1.  Include and cite information and DETAILS from each of your sources (using parenthetical citations) that explains:

            1.  What it means to have the trait

            2.  Why the trait applies to your particular birth order

          2.  Explain—in detail—how this trait does (or doesn’t) apply to you.

            1.  State whether this trait applies to you.

            2.  Explain how the trait applies to you

            3.  Prove it by describing one or two specific examples of how a person could recognize the trait from your behavior/feelings.

            4. *If the trait is not applicable to you, then try to explain why the trait would not apply to you using:

              •  Information from the research that might explain why not

              •  Personal explanations for why you might differ

              •  Examples that prove how your differ




    1. Conclusion: This should be several paragraphs of reflective writing. This is the section in which you synthesize the information presented in your paper, revealing how it is meaningful and useful to you.




      1.  Briefly explain on all the traits of your birth order again, reviewing your findings.




      1.  Explain what you have learned about yourself (strengths, weaknesses)




      1.  Explain what insights you have gained about your birth order




      1.  Explain how you might apply this knowledge of your in the future (how you can use your strengths and work on your weaknesses




  1. Works Cited Page: See the instructions or use Son of Citation Machine to help with this. Remember that anytime you quote a source or paraphrase an idea that is not your own, you must give credit with an in-text citation.


Check that you…

  1.  Don’t start each sentence with “I”—it’s boring!

  2.  There should be no “you”—only people who are first born, last born, etc.

  3.  Capitalized correctly (names, “I”, etc.)

  4.  Used commas correctly (before FANBOYS, after introductory phrases, etc.)

  5.  End your sentences—don’t just ramble on without ending! Use periods and semicolons.

  6.  Check apostrophes (I’m, Tony’s, it’s, etc.)

  7.  Watch out for commonly confused words (their/there, its/it’s, know/now, etc.)

  8.  Cited ALL information taken from an outside source using parenthesis or other citation.



Birth Order Paper Outline Overhead

First, carefully organize the information you have found from both the outside sources and your inside one into an outline modeled after the following format:



Introduction:

  1. Begin by providing some general background on birth order theory: what it is, how it works, etc. Make sure the reader understands the subject of the paper.

  2. Then share your place in your family and share some the traits of that birth order which you have selected to discuss in your research paper.

  3. This discussion will funnel down to your thesis, which would be along the lines of the following:

“Most of the characteristics of a ________ born child (apply/do not apply) to me.”

Body: Explain each characteristic or trait of your birth order in explicit detail. For each trait, you should:

  1. Include and cite information from each of your sources that explains (T):

  1. what it means to have the trait (E)

  2. why the trait applies to your particular birth order (E)

  1. Explain—in detail—how this trait does (or doesn’t) apply to you. (T)

To provide illustrative detail (show, don’t tell), you will want to supply a revealing anecdote or two to prove (or disprove) the existence of the trait.

  1. Example one (E)

  2. Explanation of how it does/doesn’t show the trait (E)

  3. Transition (T)

  4. Example two (E)

  5. Explanation of how it does/doesn’t show the trait (E)

  6. Sum it up/Transition to next reason (S)

*If the trait is not applicable to you, then try to explain why the trait would not apply to you using:

              • Information from the research that might explain why not

              • Personal explanations for why you might differ

              • Examples that prove how your differ

Remember that this pattern should be repeated for each trait of your birth order; your writing should be balanced for each trait.

Conclusion: This should be several paragraphs of reflective writing. This is the section in which you synthesize the information presented in your paper, revealing how it is meaningful and useful to you.

  1. Briefly touch on all the traits again, reviewing your findings.

  1. Thesis

  2. Reason/Trait 1

  3. Reason/Trait 2

  4. Reason/Trait 3

  1. How is this meaningful/useful to you?

  1. Explain what you have learned about yourself

  2. Explain what insights you have gained

  3. Explain how you might apply this knowledge in the future.




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