Decriptive paragraph and summary exercise
You are required to submit the FINAL copy of this assignment, but you may first submit an
optional DRAFT. This will allow you to receive qualitative feedback that can inform your
revision. You should always avoid focusing solely on the grader’s DRAFT feedback; use the
feedback as a supplement to the course lessons and your own revision ideas. Always expect to
revise beyond what the DRAFT grader specifically notes.
Choose one photo from the Time Magazine website at this address:
You will choose a photograph from the Time site and write a descriptive paragraph. Use all five
senses (sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch) to create vivid and tangible images in your own
paragraph. Be sure to address each sense in its physical form and avoid metaphors. See below:
Sight: “The green pine trees dotted the horizon.”
Hearing: “The last-minute buzzer echoed through the stadium.”
Smell: “The sweet aroma of jasmine filled my nose as I jogged past the flower garden.”
Taste: “The cookies taste sweet with a hint of salt.”
Touch: “The sand felt cold, wet, and gritty beneath my feet.”
A topic sentence for this assignment should introduce the main point or points in the
paragraph using key terms. In this case, you should touch upon the five senses because they are
the focus of this paragraph. For example, “Attending the basketball game opened up my
senses to vibrant lights, loud sounds, salty aromas, mouth-watering treats, and stinging
sensations from so much clapping.”
Finally, add directional transitions (above the fountain, next to the doorway, to the left of the
trees, etc.) to show the location and relationship of objects in the photo. This will help the
reader paint a picture by placing objects in the scene without seeing the image.
You can write this from a third person perspective (as a viewer from the outside) or from a first
person perspective (as if you were experiencing this scene firsthand).
Please copy-and-paste the photo image at the top of your paragraph (see sample assignment).
When you submit your paragraph for review, include the name of the photograph (if available)
and the exact URL where you accessed your chosen photograph. For this shorter assignment,
you need not include this information in a formal MLA Works Cited list. You may simply put the
photo title and URL at the bottom of the essay.
The secound assignment is Summary Exercise
For this assignment only, there is no draft option. You should simply submit your required final
copy whenever you are ready.1 This assignment is designed to inform your larger research
Option #1: Investigate and Interview
You have already chosen a topic and created a working thesis statement for your research
paper topic. Find a non-profit organization (e.g., one that provides literacy instruction, a
support group for cancer patients, a shelter that provides refuge for battered women) in
your city that is connected to your topic. For example, if you are researching services for
blind people, you might interview someone at the National Federation of the Blind.
Explain your assignment and request an interview with a staff member who is considered an
expert in the field. Create 10 to 20 questions related to your thesis statement to ask the
interviewee. For the writing assignment:2
Create an introduction that includes the interviewee’s background. What is his/ her
name? What is his/her position? How long has your interviewee worked at this
organization, and what is his/her role there? These are just some of the questions
that you can ask to help you build your introductory paragraph.
Summarize the interviewee’s responses in approximately three cohesive body
Finish with a concluding paragraph that explains how this interview helped you better
understand your chosen research paper topic.
Option #2: Getting What you Need from Periodicals
Locate credible sources for your chosen topic of the research paper project. Find at least five
relevant sources from periodicals.3 From the sources that you find, choose one to
summarize. The source you choose should be a credible periodical and not merely a random
website. Also keep in mind that your chosen source should be research-based and nonfiction.
For example, you should not summarize a short story for this assignment. Choose a
source such as a journal article, an essay in an anthology, a magazine article, or a newspaper
article. For this option, you might use this as a guideline for crafting your thesis statement: John
Smith’s book The Guiding Light explained (add first paragraph focus), (add second paragraph focus),
and (add third paragraph focus).
1 To successfully complete this course, you must complete this assignment according to the guidelines presented
here. It is not acceptable to omit this assignment.
2 Note that you should be conducting this interview yourself. You should not be summarizing an interview that
someone else conducted.
3 Please do not use basic informative website such as ehow or Wikipedia. The source you choose will ideally be an
academic or research-based article
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