English 3: Computer-Mediated Preparing for College Writing II
Spring 2010
Rick Dollieslager, Thomas Nelson Community College

painting the big blue marble

Proofread and edit. Then proofread and edit.

Last Updated, 26 April 2010, 9:30 a.m.

Last Updated, 25 March 2010, 11:15 a.m.

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Class Resources

English 3 Syllabus

2010 Academic and holidays calendar. Refer to this for important dates during the Spring semester.

"OWL" links OWL stands for Online Writing Labs. These are links to handbooks, workbooks, and even help desks to aid you in answering those sticky questions or finding help with any sort of writing problem.  Our primary on-line "textbook" is linked here.  It is the Guide to Grammar and Writing.

Schoolhouse Rock. No, seriously: Music is a very brain-compatible way to learn.

Wrules for Writers. When in doubt, check this style sheet. (But don't take it too seriously.)

Use these checklists to assess your own papers before relying on feedback from others.

The Learning Toolbox An excellent resource site from James Madison University with information on staying organized, test taking, study skills and strategies, critical and analytical thinking, and how to be successful in the 3 r's: readin' and writin' and 'rithmatic.

Learning Links online library courtesy of New River Community College, Dublin Virginia

Important Notice!!

At the start each class, open this web page to look at the agenda for the day. At the end of each class, return to this web page to get your homework assignment and view the agenda for the next class. You'll never miss an assignment, a due date, or an important announcement if you come to this page every day.

Week One

Monday, 1/11/10
In-class: 1] Discuss general course objectives and get to know each other. 2] Discuss the qualities and habits of successful students. 3] Log into Perfect Copy if time permits

Homework assignment for Wednesday 1/13/10, brainstorming "The One-Page Self-Motivator":
Write a list and bring it with you. List the reasons why you are in college, including how college will help you to achieve your dreams. List how communication classes will help you to achieve your academic and professional goals. List what some of your specific goals for English 03 are this semester, and follow that with a list of ways in which you will work to achieve these goals. List everyone to whom your success is important or who supports you in your goals. Try to fill up two pages, and bring this list with you to class on Thursday. It does not have to be perfect; just get the list written before class begins.

Wednesday, 1/13/10
In-class: 1] Writing sample: A letter to myself, a one-page self motivator. Either using the computer or writing by hand, I want you to compose a full page letter, which you will address to yourself, in which you will remind yourself of all the reasons you are in college, all the goals you have for this semester and your life, all the things you plan to achieve in Eng 3, all of the ways in which you will work to achieve your goals, all of the people who support you and will be happy for you when you achieve your successes--in other words all of those things I asked you to list for homework today will be written into a letter to yourself. 2] Log into Perfect Copy if time permits.

Homework for Wednesday 1/20: 1] Finish and turn in your letter to yourself. 2] Do the first three lessons on this page--on verb use and subject/verb agreement.

Week Two
Wednesday, 1/20/10
In-class: 1] Log into Perfect Copy. 2] Discussion: homework load and time management

Homework for Monday 1/25: 1] Interview someone you know who has a college degree, about how they handled the work load while they were in college. 2] Write a paragraph of appx. 150 words summarizing how your interviewee managed time as a successful college student and how you will apply that advice to your own studies.

Week Three

Monday, 1/25/10
In-class: 1] Turn in your paragraph about handling the work load and managing time in college (posted above). 2] Understanding the
Natural Human Learning Process (NHLP) 3] Taking notes on the NHLP using the Cornell (University) notetaking method.

Homework for Wednesday 1/27: Learning analysis Paragraph 1, summarizing what you learned about the NHLP: 1] Review your notes from class on the NHLP. 2] Put your notes away. 3] Orally, explain the NHLP to someone you know. 4] Write a one-page description of the NHLP, appx. 200 words. The topic sentence of this paragraph should be something like this: "The brain constructs knowledge through a series of stages referred to as the Natural Human Learning Process (NHLP)." And every sentence in the paragraph must relate to the topic sentence, describing the 5 or 6 stages of the learning process and giving examples or descriptions of what is meant by each stage. For example, "All learning begins with motivation, the first stage in the learning process. For instance, I learned to garden when I was very young because my family couldn't afford to buy all of its food from the grocery stores, and we had to eat. However the motivation to learn something new may be simply pleasure or enjoyment like when I first started to learn Worlds of War on my PS II." Or whatever, from your own experience, shows that you were motivated to learn something.
NOTE: This assignment is just a draft (at this point). It will be the first body paragraph of an essay about how you learn, but we will write the essay one paragraph at a time.

Wednesday, 1/27/10
In-class: 1] Show me your paragraphs. 2] An owners manual for your brain.

Homework for Monday 2/1: Learning analysis Paragraph 2. Write a paragraph (appx. 200 words) that describes how dendrites grow in the brain (remember: dendrite growth is caused by synaptic firing) and the effect that emotions have on dendrite growth. Your topic sentence may be something like this: "During the learning process, the cells in our brains actually change in a physical sense while we are learning, by growing fibers, called dendrites, which develop into networks of brain cells where the learning is stored. The intersting thing about this biological process is that it is controlled by our emotions." Here's the process I suggest for writing the parpagrpah: 1] Review your notes from Wednesday's class on the how dendrites grow. 2] Put your notes away. 3] Orally, explain the synaptic firing and dendrite growth to someone you know. 4] Write, using a topic sentence similar to the one I suggest above to keep your paragraph on focus. Remember all details in a paragraph should develop the idea in the topic sentence. If a sentence is not related to the topic sentence of the paragraph, take out that sentence.

Week Four

Wednesday, 2/3/10
In-class: 1] Show me both paragraphs that were assigned last week. 2] Review the
parts of speech 3] Let's delve into prepositions and prepositional phrases, and begin marking them on our paragraphs.

Homework for Monday 2/8: Mark the prepositional phrases in your first two paragraphs, and identify the parts of the prepositional phrases. Label the preposition phrase by putting the whole thing in parentheses, label the preposition with "prep," the object with "obj" and anything in between as modifiers "mod."

Week Five

Monday, 2/8/10
In-class: Mini-conferences on your first two paragraphs. I am looking for two things in your paragraphs. First, that you are correctly indentifying prepositions, prepositional phrases, and the objects of the prepesotional phrases. (On Wednesday, I am going to give you a short quiz at the start of class on WHY we need to be able to recognize the objects of prepositional phrases, so be thinking about that.) Second, I am looking at the content.

Homework for Wednesday 2/10: Revise the paragraphs that have already been assigned. Follow the instructions I posted on 1/26 and 1/28 above. The revised paragraphs are due at the start of class on Wednesday

Wednesday, 2/10/10
In-class: 1] Quiz: write one to three sentences about WHY we need to be able to recognize the objects of prepositional phrases 2] Show me both paragraphs that you have revised since Monday.

Homework for Monday 2/15:
1] Write one to three sentences about WHY we need to be able to recognize the objects of prepositional phrases.
2] Show me (on Monday) both paragraphs about the NHLP and brain development that you have revised.
3] Read/Review the qualities of a good
thesis statement
4] Read this essay about a student I had several years ago.
5] Write out the thesis statement of the essay about my student, Patrick, that I link to above and on this line. This is a bit tricky because the thesis is not stated outright, but is implied, so I need YOU to write a good thesis statement for it. Don't let me down because I thnk it can be a good essay if it just has a good thesis statement.
6] Write a paragraph of approximately 150 words about someone that you personally know who, like Patrick, succeeded in the face of adversity. It may be a family member or friend; or maybe that person is YOU! It's okay to write about yourself as an example of a successful person.

Week Six

Monday, 2/15/10
In-class: 1] Mini-conferences on your two or three paragraphs about the NHLP and brain development. You should have two or three separate paragraphs about two separate aspects of how we learn. The first is about the NHLP in general, the second demonstrates how you learned a specific skill going through the stages of the NHLP, and the third paragraph is about how and why the brain cells grow and develop into neural networks during the learning process. Refer to your notes from my lectures about this and also to the
PowerPoint presentation.
2] Read/Write partners: You will pair up with a colleague and read each other's paragraph about a successful person whom you know well. The reader will underline the three or four things that he wishes to know MORE about the person the writer is describing.

Homework for Wednesday 2/17:
Write a paragraph of 100 to 150 words
focussing on one thing that your reader wanted to know more about your successful person.

Wednesday, 2/17/10
In-class: 1] Discuss the writing/revising process. In the short assignments you have written so far you have drafted what will be the body paragraphs of two essays, and you are currently drafting the third essay, about a successful person. By week 8 we will have revised the short assignments into three essays: One, the "letter to myself" and the interview assignment will be revised into an essay about why you are in college and how you will succeed. Two, the three paragraphs about the NHLP and how the brain develops will be an essay about how the brain functions and develops during the learning process. Three, you will have an essay describing a person you know who has been successful in the face of adversity. 2] Draft or revise your second paragraph about your successful person based on the feedback from your reader during the Read/Write Partners activity on Monday.

Homework for Monday 2/22:
1. Draft two more body paragraphs about your successful person. What will your readers want to know more about your person? Tell us!
2. Read about writing introductory and concluding paragraphs. We will discuss what to do in introductions and conclusions and what NOT to do in introductions and conclusions of essays.
3. Draft the introductory and concluding paragraphs for your successful person essay so that you have a complete draft of an essay on this topic by the start of class on Monday.

Week Seven

Monday, 2/22/10
In-class: 1] Reconstructing Bertrand Russell's "What I have Lived For" 2] Write out the thesis statement of "
The Sacred Grove of Oshogbo"

Homework for Wednesday 2/24:
1. Write out the thesis statement of "The Sacred Grove of Oshogbo"
2. Be prepared to discuss and/or write about the importance of descriptive details in a narrative or personal essay

Wednesday, 2/24/10
In-class: 1] Pair share: Write out a thesis statement for "The Sacred Grove of Oshogbo" 2] Write out the four sentences that convey the most important information in the essay. 3] Discuss what this essay tells you about the importance of concrete descriptive details in your own writing and prepare to tell your class colleagues how you will use concrete description in your successful person essay (or show us by reading from your draft.)

Homework for Monday 3/8

Write a thesis statement and outline (or plan of organization) for the first three assigned essays, per our class discussion today.

Week Eight: Revision Workshops

Monday, 3/08/10
In-class: 1] Mr. D. checks thesis statement and outline (or plan of organization) for the first three assigned essays 2] Begin revision of content of essays 1-3 according to plan discussed with Mr. D.

Homework for Wednesday 3/10:
1. Revise, revise, revise! By the end of class on Weds, you will have three essays ready to be thoroughly edited
2. Make an appointment with Mr. D (or Mr. Sulzberger, our writing coach) if you are stuck on anything that you think may prevent you from having all three essays completely drafted by Wednesday.

Mr. D's contact information and office hours are listed on the course syllabus. Mr. Sulzberger is in room 919, just around the corner from our classroom. Email him to make an appointment at this address: Sulzbergerr@tncc.edu. His office hours are below:

NOTE on revising and editing workshops and Essay # 4, "The Independent Essay": For the next three calendar weeks we will be editing the first three essays to prepare them for the portfolios, and we will be focusing on developing punctuation and grammar skills to apply when editing our essays. Additionally, on March 31st your 4th essay will be due. It is on a topic of your choice. For instance, if you are writing an essay for another class, you may include that in your Eng. 3 portfolio. If you wish to attend a TNCC cultural event or a TNCC Student Success Seminar and write a summary-and-review essay of that experience, you may choose to write about it. Do you have other topic ideas you would like to pitch? As long as we talk about it first so that I approve, you may do whatever topic you would like. I will approve your topic if I don't think it is too big to tackle in 2 to 3 pages.

Wednesday, 3/10/10
In-class: Mr. D. checks revised drafts of essays 1-3, has "mini-conferences" with those who need feedback or are stuck.

Homework for Monday 3/15:
1. Revised essays 1-3, completely drafted. No excuses, no extensions, no exceptions!
2. Write out, in your own words, your definition of 1) a phrase, 2) a clause, 3) a sentence, 4) a sentence fragment, 5) a run-on (sometimes called a "fused") sentence, 6) a comma splice.
3. Use these online resources (below) to answer the questions above (homework assignment #2), or you may borrow a handbook from the shelves in the front of the classroom, but please show me which book you are borrowing.

Week Nine: Studying Sentences (GGW: fragments and run-ons)

Monday, 3/15/10
In-class: Pair-shares. We will break into six pairs, you will study and answer your question about sentence grammar, then you will share that question by teaching the concept to your colleagues: What are the elements of a sentence, what is a phrase, what is a clause, what is a fragment, a comma splice, and a run-on sentnece?

Homework for Wednesday 3/17:
1. Correct all sentence boundary errors on ONE of your three essays. (Sentence boundary errors include fragments, comma splices, and run-ons.)
2. Review and study anything you are not clear about with regard to the parts of speech (see the handout and the GGW), phrases, clauses, fragments, comma splices and run-on sentences. Add this information to the notes you started in class today.

Wednesday, 3/17/10
In-class: Let's correct some sentence boundary errors on your essays. Who wants to volunteer your paper first for the whole class to edit for sentence construction?

Homework for Monday 3/22:
1. Correct all fragments, run-ons and comma splices in your essays 1-3
2. Write out, in your own words, your definition of 1) a regular verb, 2) an irregular verb, 3) past tense, 4) present tense, 5) what is meant by "subject-verb agreement.
3. Use these online resources (below) to answer the questions above (homework assignment #2), or you may borrow a handbook from the shelves in the front of the classroom, but please show me which book you are borrowing.

Week Ten: Studying Verb Use (GGW: subject-verb agreement and verb tenses)

Monday, 3/22/10
In-class: Take notes on and discuss sentence constructions and verb use

Homework for Wednesday 3/29:
1. Correct all sentence boundary errors in one of your essays (for Mr. D. to review on Weds.)
2. Correct all verb tense errors, and subject-verb agreement errors in one of your essays (for Mr. D. to review on Weds.)

Wednesday, 3/24/10
In-class: Mr. D. reviews one of your essays for correct sentence constructions and another for verb use.

Homework for Monday 3/29:
1. Correct all verb tense errors, and subject-verb agreement errors in your essays 1-3
2. Write out, in your own words, the five most common ways in which commas are used.
3. Use these online resources (below) to answer the questions above (homework assignment #2), or you may borrow a handbook from the shelves in the front of the classroom, but please show me which book you are borrowing.

Week Eleven: Studying Comma Use (GGW: comma use and misuse)

Monday, 3/29/10
In-class: Mini-conferences on essay revisions and edits

Wednesday, 3/31/10
Due: Essay #4, "The Independent Essay"
In-class: Mini-conferences on essay revisions and edits

Homework for Monday 4/5:
Correct all comma errors in your essays 1-3

Week Twelve: Proofreading and editing

Monday, 4/5/10
In-class: Mini-conferences on essay revisions and edits. Use the link above to the "Proofreading" page of the Guide to Grammar and Writing an check your papers for these features of a good essay and for these correstion to make. Each of the editing conventions provides a link to that section of the GGW's handbook.

Wednesday, 4/7/10
In-class: Reconstructing the poem "Landscape With the Fall of Icarus" into a prose description of the painting.

Week Thirteen: Correcting Commas in your portfolio essays

Monday, 4/12/10
In-class: Discuss and take notes on the editing skills we need to demonstrate in the portfolio essays.

Wednesday, 4/14/10
In-class: Correcting commas in Perfect Copy lessons using the handout: "The Least You Need to Know About Editing for Eng. 1 and Eng. 3"

Homework for Monday 4/19:
Make an appointment with me to go over your essays for your portfolio!!

Week Fourteen: Portfolio Conferences

Monday, 4/19/10
In-class: 1] Portfolio mini-conferences with Mr. D. 2] Sentence editing share-pair. Here's how to do sentence editing.

  1. Select the essay you have written that needs the most editing.
  2. Read the last sentence of your partner's paper aloud to the writer exactly as written.
  3. Discuss it if it does not sound gramatically correct.
  4. Check your resources which I've linked to in the past several weeks to be certain of how to correct the problem.
  5. Then read the next to last sentence and do the same thing.
  6. Then the sentence before that one, then the sentences before that, making your way backwards through the essay, considering one sentence at a time.

Homework for Wednesday 4/21:
Make an appointment with me to go over your essays for your portfolio!!

Wednesday, 4/21/10
In-class: Correcting commas in Perfect Copy using the handout: "The Least You Need to Know About Editing for Eng. 1 and Eng. 3"

Homework for Monday 4/26:
Make an appointment with me to go over your essays for your portfolio!

Week Fifteen: In-Class Essays

essay cartoon

Monday, 4/26/10
In-class: 1] Portfolio mini-conferences. 2] Sentence editing share-pair. Here's how to do sentence editing. 3] Portfolio preparation:
formatting correctly.

  1. Select the essay you have written that needs the most editing.
  2. Read the last sentence of your partner's paper aloud to the writer exactly as written.
  3. Discuss it if it does not sound gramatically correct.
  4. Check your resources which I've linked to in the past several weeks to be certain of how to correct the problem.
  5. Then read the next to last sentence and do the same thing.
  6. Then the sentence before that one, then the sentences before that, making your way backwards through the essay, considering one sentence at a time.

Homework for Wednesday 4/19:
Make an appointment with me to go over your essays for your portfolio.

Wednesday, 4/28/10
In-class: 1] Begin drafting the in-class final. 2] Portfolio review by Mr. D. While you are drafting your in-class essays, I will be reviewing all of your other essays. You will turn in clean copy of your papers in a folder along with the previous draft of each one, (i.e., the draft that I have marked on or made notes on so that I can see the revisions and edits that you have made..

Portfolios will be turned in at 10:45 on Monday, 5/3/10.
No extensions. No
exceptions. No excuses.

Week Sixteen (Finals Week): Final Conferences

Monday, 5/3/10
In-class: 1] Finish drafting and editing the in-class final. 2] Turn in portfolios for evaluation.

Friday, 5/7/10 9:00-10:45
In-class: Eng. 3 Portfolio outcomes exit-conferences. (Octavia goes first.)


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