An Introduction to the Introduction How to Write effectively from the start.
The Hook • Your opening sentence(s) should hookthe reader’s attention. • a.k.a. grabber/lead sentence • Lure in your audience. • Do NOT give away the specifics of your topic.
Types of Hooks • No “one size fits all” formula. • What works best for you, the purpose of the prompt, and for your audience?
Types of Hooks • Imagine Statement: • “Ask” the reader to picture or imagine a scenario that will be addressed later. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: If you could change one thing about your school, what would it be? • Imagine Statement: Imagine a classroom full of eager students who are ready to learn and quiet as mice. This could happen if we were only allowed to have free time.
Now, You Try… • Prompt: Why is it so important to follow school rules? • Hook: ? Or • Prompt: If you were a professional athlete, which sport would you play and why? • Hook: ?
Types of Hooks • Dialogue: • Open with dialogue. • Must use quotation marks and proper punctuation. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: Write about a traumatic event that has happened in your life. • Dialogue: “Get out of the house, now!” Dad screamed as the blazing fire rushed toward us.
Now, You Try… • Prompt: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be and why? • Hook: ? Or • Prompt: If you were turned into a teacher for one day, what would you do? • Hook: ?
Types of Hooks • The Riddle: • Open with a riddle for the reader to solve. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: Write about a time you were influenced by peer pressure. • The Riddle: What can sneak up on you, influence you greatly, and get you into trouble? I will never forget the time my supposed friends pushed me to do something I never should have done.
Now, You Try… • Prompt: Tell about a time when you forgot to do something very important. • Hook: ? Or • Prompt: You have been asked to plan an after-school program for your school. Think about activities that students might enjoy. Write about this after-school program. • Hook: ?
Types of Hooks • Famous Quote: • Begin with a well-known (or not-so-well-known) quote. • From a book, song, person, etc. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be and why? • Famous Quote: As Thoreau once said, “It’s not what you look at that matters. It’s what you see.” When I look in the mirror, I see just another human being, one with a major physical flaw...
Now, You Try… • Prompt: You just found out that the world will end in three days. Explain how you would spend the remainder of your time on earth? • Hook: ? OR • Prompt: Everyone has experienced fear at one point in their lives. Think about a time when you were afraid. Explain why this was such a fearful event. • Hook: ?
Types of Hooks • Imagery: (Sensory Language) • Description of a place or situation. • Appeals to the five senses. • Can be purposeful fragments. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: Write about the best family vacation ever. • Imagery: Sitting silently on the crowded beach, listening to the echoes of seagulls screeching overhead, I remember breathing in the salty, coconut air.
Now, You Try… • Prompt: Why should students have free time at school? • Hook: ? OR • Prompt: Whether young or old, everyone has imagined their own version of an ideal day. Think about what you would do. Explain why this would be your perfect day. • Hook: ?
Types of Hooks • Brief Anecdote: • Begin with a quick story or personal experience relating to the topic. • Two-three sentences. EXAMPLE: • Prompt: There have been many inventions that have impacted the world. What has been the most beneficial invention? Explain why. • Anecdote: When I was in middle school, nothing brought more happiness to my life than music. Just relaxing on my bed, letting my mind freely flow to the vibes of Bob Marley, I was content. However, this satisfaction would not be fulfilled without the iPod.
Now, You Try… • Prompt: Who is your hero? Why? • Hook: ? OR • Prompt: There have been many inventions that have impacted the world. What has been the most beneficial invention? Explain why. • Hook: ?
Thesis Statement: • Reveals the two OR threemain points of your paper. • Usually combined into a single, complex sentence. • Usually the last sentence(s) of your introduction. • A “road map” for your reader. • 1st point = 1st body paragraph • 2nd point = 2nd body paragraph • 3rd point = 3rd body paragraph
Example • Prompt: Eating healthy foods is important. Explain why you should eat healthy foods. • Thesis Statement: • Without a doubt, maintaining a nutritious diet is highly beneficial, increasing energy levels, enhancing one’s physique, and most importantly, preventing potential illness. 1st body paragraph = energy 2nd body paragraph = physique 3rd body paragraph = illness prevention
Example (Together) • Prompt: Explain the potential benefits of attending college. • Brainstorm possible points. • What are some potential benefits? • What works best for you, your purpose, and your audience? • Thesis Statement: ?
Now, You Try… • Prompt: If you could be a famous person, who would you be, and why? • Thesis Statement: ? OR • Prompt: What is your favorite means of transportation? Explain why. • Thesis Statement: ?
Thus, the Introductory Paragraph… • Hook + Thesis Statement = Introductory Paragraph • You may need a transitional word, phrase,or sentence to connect your hook and thesis statement.
Now, You Try… • Instructions: • Select one of the previous prompts. • From that prompt, choose the most suitable type of hook. • Lure in the audience. • Brainstorm possible points to create a thesis statement. • Connect your hook and your thesis statement. • Now, you have written an introductory paragraph.
Peer Review • After writing your introductory paragraph, share with THREE of your peers for constructive feedback. • On a sticky note, peers will identify the following: • Type of hook used, rating effectiveness on a scale of 1-4 • Two-three points of thesis statement, rating effectiveness on a scale of 1-4 • One positive, one negative comment (Be constructive!) • Sign your name as well.