“For your first unit essay assignment, I want you to begin with what you believe

Admin/ July 13, 2022/ English

“For your first unit essay assignment, I want you to begin with what you believe are the most important things that students should or can or do expect of educational institutions. As we think about this broad question in depth, we will be considering narrower aspects of it. I want you to choose one of these more focused issues and build an original essay around it. Use your essay to dig deep, to think the issue through as far as you can. Begin with our classwork but try to move beyond it. Try to communicate some new, interesting, developed set of ideas, to move beyond the obvious. And if, during our work, some related issue grabs you, your essay can focus on this. You do not have to limit your work to addressing the central question of what students expect from schools.
In fact, I do not want you to use your essay to answer this larger generative question. I want you to use your writing to think through some narrower part of it in more depth than you would have imagined possible before we began working on it in class. Use your writing to look critically at some limited issue (and consequently at our world), to push your thinking beyond what you might have already worked out. In short, work on writing an essay that is worth writing as well as worth reading. This is an admittedly difficult task. But it is one worth doing, and I know you can do it. Remember the words of Socrates: “An unexamined life isn’t worth living.” That’s what our project is this semester—we are using writing to critically examine our lives. (Incidentally, you may recall that Socrates was executed for his work educating his fellow Athenians. Critical thinking can be a dangerous business in more ways than one.)
This first essay should be four word-processed, double-spaced pages long, in multiple-paragraph form, with one-inch margins, in 12-point font, plus a “Works Cited” page. It should include appropriate citations for at least one source. Please note that the essay must incorporate one source (clearly cited in the essay text and properly listed on a “Works Cited” page) and be four pages in length to meet the minimum passing requirements of the assignment. We will consider potential sources you might use and how to use them and properly cite them during class.”

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