Can living free of material possessions be part of the American Dream?

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Essay Writing Packet
Can living free of material possessions be part of the American Dream?









Bellringer (4/13)

Considering your pros and cons, write a thesis statement here:

The Thesis Statement Test

Now, ask yourself the following questions about your thesis statement:

1. Is it a statement?

2. Does it avoid a “duh” or “so what?” response from the audience?
3. Is it provable or arguable?
4. Can someone argue the opposite or an alternative perspective? (think about dress codes, raising the driving age, a four day school week, and the like)
5. Is it specific without being too narrow?
If any of the questions above garner a “no” response, you must revise your thesis.

Homework (4/13):

Finalize your thesis statement and write it here:

Bellringer (4/14): What are the elements of a strong introductory paragraph? List three below:




Notes from peer responses:

Homework (4/14):

ACT-style introductory paragraph

  1. Grab the rater’s attention (mention the situation and proposals from the prompt)

  2. Explain your position on the topic clearly and concisely (choose one side---this is your thesis)

  3. Transition into your three examples or supports

Your introduction will be 3-4 sentences in length

Now, write an introduction for your essay that follows the above format:

Bellringer (4/15):

Write three supports for your thesis below. Write them as topic sentences.




Homework (4/15):

ACT-style body paragraph

  1. Begin the paragraph with a topic sentence, which serves as the thesis statement of the paragraph. It explains what your example is and places it within the context of your argument.

  2. The next 3-4 sentences are for developing your example. In these sentences you show through specific, concrete discussion of facts and situations just how your example supports your topic sentence.

Each body paragraph will be 4-5 sentences in length
Choose your best support and write its body paragraph below:

Bellringer (4/16):

  • Why should counterarguments be written into persuasive essays?

  • What is a refutation and why is it important to include in a persuasive essay?

Write a counterargument to include in your essay:

Write a refutation to this counterargument:

Homework (DUE Monday, 4/19):

Write a full rough draft of your essay.

Remember to include all parts written in this packet.

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