The focus of 8th grade writing is crafting strong academic analytic essays. We develop our thesis writing and work on ways to support our ideas using textual evidence.
This page will have tips, links, info, and related items to help gain, build, and improve writing skills. Here are Google Docs resources.  Here are some great resources.
Thesis is the BIG IDEA - the text is an EXAMPLE of that big idea
  • It
    should include the author and title of the book.
  • It
    should have the theme.
  • It
    should have the message the book has about that theme. 
  • It
    should be one sentence 
  • The thesis should
    not state the obvious or unarguable (i.e. Slavery is bad).
  • The thesis should
    not mention specific characters or plot elements. 
  • My example from class: The novel, Chains, by Laurie Halse Anderson, shows that family allows people to overcome great obstacles. 

  • The thesis is the anchor of your paper. It tells your reader what the paper is about (the title & author of the book, the main point you will make about the book, and your main arguments to support that point).
  • As you will read if you you follow the first link below, three is a good number of supporting arguments, especially when writing a five paragraph essay.
  • The thesis will include your opinion on the topic. This means you will have to form an opinion, no one can do this for you - YOU WILL HAVE TO THINK! Don't worry it won't be that painful.
EXAMPLE thesis: Steinbeck's novel, Of Mice and Men, provides the reader with an accurate portrayal of women in the 1920's that shows them as lonely, a source of fear for men, and not much better than a possession.

  • Each body paragraph is then devoted to expanding on and explaining one of the arguments. The paragraph should start with a topic sentence that tells the reader what part of the argument will be focused on. Your weakest paragraph should come second, and your strongest should be last.
EXAMPLE topic sentence: Curley's wife, though surrounded by men who work on the ranch, is friendless and very lonely.

Watch Mr. P model DRAFTING a paragraph:

Watch Mr. P model REVISING a paragraph:

The thrilling conclusion to Mr. P's essay on Shel Silvertien's poem "WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS". Watch Mr. P struggle and think through writing his conclusion by using his introduction as a model.

Daily Writing Tips

Single vs. double quotation marks
This page has many great strategies for constructing an essay
Essay Writing: 1st vs 3rd POV

Tips on writing your thesis
**Defining Thesis and examples**
Thesis Creator
More thesis writing help
Distraction Free Writing

Chris P,
Jun 3, 2013, 7:42 AM
Chris P,
Jun 3, 2013, 7:43 AM
Unknown user,
Sep 24, 2012, 5:42 AM