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What is an expository writing?
Chances are, if you were to check your dictionary for “expository”, the word would be noted as an adjectival derivative of the noun, “exposition”. Both“exposition”and“expound”trace their etymology to the Latin word “exponere”. Therefore, an expository essay must expose something; it must expound upon some idea. The writer places an idea out ( exponere = out +place ) before others with details which validate the idea’s worth.
In French, "J'essaie" means "I attempt". The French writer Michel de Montaigne used the term "essaie" to describe his attempts to present his ideas. His essays were brief, personal, and on a variety of topics. Sir Francis Bacon developed the essay form more formally. An essay can be informal or formal, short or long, personal or reserved.
The following Rubric presents a means of evaluating writing.
Introduction ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*states topic & main points that will be developed
Topic Development ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*sufficient points & examples are developed appropriately & consistently with the form of the composition
Sentence Structure ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*complete sentences, varied sentence length and form, appropriate diction
Conclusion ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*clearly states what has been discussed/proved
Coherence ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*unified product; logical progression of ideas
Clear Emphasis ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*ideas are clearly stated and given appropriate development
Word Choice ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*varied, appropriate vocabulary for the topic
Format ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
*logically follows the assigned form
Composition Type__________________________ Score __________
The 5 paragraph Essay
Truly this type of short essay has been strongly criticized as being confining. Some teachers feel it has been over-taught (to the detriment of students' writing); however, many proficiency tests grade these essays more highly than creative essays.
This is a highly structured form for expository writing. This type of essay is to be clear and to the point. The student must not ramble, and must clearly support and develop the topic. Once a student has mastered this form, deviation should be encouraged. However, as with any discipline, this "etude" needs to be practiced and mastered. If one wishes to earn creative credit for breaking the rules, one must begin by mastering the pedantic, basic forms.
- opening sentence
- 1st point ( general focus statement)
> - 2nd point
- 3rd point
- topic sentence/ thesis statement
- open/ topic for the paragraph – thee same point as 2nd sentence of opening paragraph
- expand point
- quote (or paraphrase) and cite the articlle
- explain the quotation in reference to thee thesis
- transition to next paragraph
- open/ topic for the paragraph – thee same point as 3nd sentence of opening paragraph
- expand point
- quote and cite the article *note – The essay must contain at least one direct quote.
- explain the quotation in reference to thee thesis
- transition to next paragraph
- open/ topic for the paragraph – thee same point as 4nd sentence of opening paragraph
- expand point
- quote (or paraphrase) and cite the articlle
- explain the quotation in reference to thee thesis
- transition to next paragraph
- open with a restatement of thesis
- generally restate the focus*
- close with a strong idea that has been meentioned in the essay
Thesis statement -- Topic of essay + emotional response or call to action (*focus), plus 3 points.
Citation – In a short essay, place the complete citation at the end. If only one article is used, only page numbers need to be placed in the text for parenthetical citation. If more than one article is used, use standard parenthetical citation form.
The 11-sentence Paragraph
As confining and structured as many find the 5 paragraph essay, it is mirthfully free when compared to the 11- sentence paragraph. Once again, this is a highly disciplined form or writing. It is quite effective when used as a short response to a poem. This response has one central idea. Since this form demands long, complex sentences, it should be attempted by mature students who want to polish the presentation of their ideas.
When preparing an 11-sentence paragraph on a poem or on a short story, one must first develop the topic sentence.
After reading the whole work find one main theme or topic that you think is the main reason the author wrote the work: the central idea to understanding the work. Your topic sentence must present a strong thought that necessitates further explanation.
Your three supporting sentences must be developed directly from the topic. The three supporting sentences should clarify the point made in the topic sentence, define the focus of your essay (what you wish to say), and define the author's intent.
The sentences of direct evidence are composed, in part, of quotations or paraphrased statements from the poem or story. These quotations directly relate to the ideas the supporting sentences are presenting. If analyzing a poem, the students should present two short quotes of no more than 6 words and one extended quote. (An extended quote of 4 to 6 lines is acceptable, but it should be indented according to MLA format.) For a story, a short paraphrase could be used, but the paragraph should have at least one direct quote. As with any writing, all quotations or paraphrases must be properly cited.
The follow-up sentences further explain how the supporting sentences and the direct evidence are related to the topic. These are a transitional sentences and help to keep the paragraph unified.
The form is repetitious.
The final sentence states a significant insight into the work for which the topic, supporting sentences, and evidence have prepared the reader.
This is the order of the paragraph's sentences.
Main supporting sentence #1
Direct evidence #1
Follow-up sentence #1
Main supporting sentence #2
Direct evidence #2
Follow up sentence #2
Main supporting sentence #3
Direct evidence #3
Follow-up sentence #3
The Direct evidence is considered one sentence since the quotes or paraphase are presented as one entry. There are only 11 sentences.
Exposition is a literary device used to introduce background information about events, settings, characters etc. to the audience or readers. The word comes from the Latin language and its literal meaning is “a showing forth.” Exposition is crucial to any story, for without it nothing makes sense.
There are many ways to present an exposition and they include monologues, dialogues, in-universe media (newspaper, letters, reports, journal etc.), a protagonist ’s thoughts or a narrator’s explanation of past events. It is one of the four rhetorical modes of communication – the other three being narration, description and argumentation.Exposition Examples Exposition in Movies Example #1
There are countless examples of exposition in many great movies and one of them, which comes across particularly well is from Star Wars. The exposition in this movie is the opening title sequence that gives information about the past events to the viewers. The crawling text on the screen at the beginning of each part gives the audience every piece of information they need to understand the upcoming events in the film. The opening lines usually begin like this: “A long time ago in a galaxy far away, far away…”Exposition in Literature Example #2
An exposition is typically positioned at the beginning of a novel or a movie because the author wants the readers to be fully aware of the characters in the story. The famous story for children titled “The Three Little Bears ” applies this technique of exposition.
Once upon a time, there were three bears. There was a Daddy Bear, who was very big, a Mama Bear, who was middle-sized, and a Baby Bear, who was very small. They all lived together in a little cottage in the middle of the woods. Their favorite breakfast was porridge. One morning, after they made their porridge, Daddy Bear said, ‘Let’s go for walk in the woods until it cools.’ Mama Bear and Baby Bear liked the idea, so off they went. While they were away, a little girl named Goldilocks came walking through the forest and smelled the porridge…
With the help of a single passage, the author of the story has given us an overview of the bear family, their residence and information on how the story sets in motion.
All of Shakespeare ’s writings contain excellent exposition examples. Take Othello. Romeo and Juliet. Henry V. and Richard III . and you will see how exceptionally he has used the art of expository writing. Here, two examples from Othello have been taken to elaborate the point.Example #3
Act I: the opening scene of Othello shows a fierce argument between Roderigo and Iago, which helps build the interest of the readers. The readers/audiences realize that Iago is persistently trying to convince Roderigo to be his accomplice in destroying Othello. The exposition in this scene plays the following roles:
End of Act 1: this part of the play tells the audience a few facts about Othello that include:
As it is evident from the examples given above, exposition always gives us an insight into the characters’ personalities and adds a flavor to the tragedy and drama we see towards the end of the play.Function of exposition
The importance of exposition in literature, as well as in our practical lives, cannot be ignored. Examining the types of writing we come across in our daily lives show us that almost all of them are incomplete without exposition.
The fiction books, articles and magazines that people read in their everyday lives essentially rely on exposition to connect the readers to the main story by giving them the background information. In most cases, a narrative or script loses its essence if not accompanied by an exposition. Not only is it important for bringing clarity to a script but it is also vital to enhance its literary value. The true essence of a book usually lies in how the reader is introduced to the characters in it and, if done correctly, the reader automatically starts relating to them.
Moreover, exposition is also widely used for academic purposes in schools, colleges and universities. Generally, students are asked to submit research reports and pass exams to establish their progress. The exposition here is keeping the academia updated on what you have learned so far.
Also, employees are also asked very often to put together business reports and memorandums to update their employers about their progress.
The Five-Step Writing Process for Expository Essays
Expository writing is a life skill. More than any other type of writing, expository writing is a daily requirement of most careers. Understanding and following the proven steps of the writing process helps all writers, including students, master the expository essay.
Expository Essay Structure
Usually, the expository essay is composed of five paragraphs. The introductory paragraph contains the thesis or main idea. The next three paragraphs, or body of the essay, provide details in support of the thesis. The concluding paragraph restates the main idea and ties together the major points of essay.
Here are expository essay tips for each part of the essay structure and writing process:
1. Prewriting for the Expository Essay
In the prewriting phase of writing an expository essay, students should take time to brainstorm about the topic and main idea. Next, do research and take notes. Create an outline showing the information to be presented in each paragraph, organized in a logical sequence.
2. Drafting the Expository Essay
When creating the initial draft of an expository essay, consider the following suggestions:
The most important sentence in the introductory paragraph is the topic sentence, which states the thesis or main idea of the essay. The thesis should be clearly stated without giving an opinion or taking a position. A good thesis is well defined, with a manageable scope that can be adequately addressed within a five-paragraph essay. Each of the three body paragraphs should cover a separate point that develops the essay’s thesis. The sentences of each paragraph should offer facts and examples in support of the paragraph’s topic. The concluding paragraph should reinforce the thesis and the main supporting ideas. Do not introduce new material in the conclusion. Since an expository essay discusses an event, situation, or the views of others, and not a personal experience, students should write.
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An expository essay provides an explanation or information of something through the use of factual data. Facts can be further explained by using clear and concise ideas. Towards the end of the expository essay, the writer should be able to gradually build an argument out of the facts provided. This can be achieved by using cause and effect analysis, comparison and contrast, as well as by giving definitions or further examples of the central topic. Here are the steps in writing an expository essay.
Step 1. Identify the main topic.
Step 2. Gather facts and other information relevant to the topic.
Step 3. Write your clear and concise thesis statement in your expository essay's first or introductory paragraph.
Step 4. Distribute your facts in your body paragraphs. Group your facts according to their commonalities.
Step 5. Provide logical and smooth transition sentences between paragraphs.
Step 6. Conclude your essay.Outline
Try applying this structure to your own writing: write sentences for the corresponding elements of your introduction, body paragraphs and conclusion in the space provided below.
Begin your paper with a opening sentence or “hook” about your topic that catches the reader’s attention. Reference the list on the front for ideas.
Include context: provide the information the reader will need to understand the topic.
State your thesis, your arguable position on the topic. What side will you take? What will you prove in your paper? What are you going to explore?
Write a general topic sentence that states the main idea of the paragraph for your first body paragraph, or for one you are having difficulty organizing.
Write down the specific textual evidence or evidence from other sources that you are using to support your thesis.
Analyze your evidence: tell the reader what is significant or important about this evidence. How does the piece of evidence support your thesis? Why did you choose to include it?
Don’t forget a transition sentence: Connect each paragraph with a sentence or two that demonstrates how each idea leads into the next.
Make connections for the reader in your conclusion. You should refer back to your thesis, but don’t simply restate it. Use some of the following questions to guide you:
1. Did you propose any solutions? Are there solutions yet to be discovered?
2. What questions still need to be answered?
3.What is the larger significance of the topic you chose to write about?
4. What should the reader do or think after reading your paper?
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Comparative Expository Essay. Definition, in rhetoric, is the meaningful extension of a logical definition in order to answer the “What” to its fullest extent.
Definition The primary purpose of expository writing is to provide information such as. Write topic sentences for the body paragraphs of the essay. • Write the.
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Below we have identified 4 types of expository essay found in university curricula. but the way to answered it is by careful definition of what is meant by the.How to Write an Explanatory Essay. As its name implies, an explanatory essay provides an explanation or presentation of a certain viewpoint, situation or event.
Writing Styles Facts and Information for Kids • KidsKonnect
In an expository essay and b know and practice specific tips for the STAAR test. Definition of ACCOMPLISHED a proficient as the result of practice or.