March 31, 2023 Skills Board
1. Idiom of the Day:
Some women carry everything but the kitchen sink in their bags; this was helpful to Tim when he needed both a bandage and some Advil after his injury.
Note: In this sentence, please notice that instead of a conjunction, I used a semicolon to separate two independent clauses. Since independent clauses can stand alone, I could also have used a period. But...don't just use semicolons haphazardly! The two clauses you are connecting must have something in common before you can add this punctuation mark!
Here is an example of when you CANNOT place a semicolon in between two clauses:
Example of what NOT TO DO: I cannot wait to go to the beach this summer; my sister is several years younger than I am.
Why do you think the semicolon does not work in this case?
Replace the second clause with one that does stick to the meaning of the sentence!
2. Idiom of the Day #2:
In the short story, The Lottery Ticket by Anton Chekhov, we saw that Ivan began envisioning all kinds of luxuries and power he could have if his wife's ticket held the winning numbers. We decided he should not be counting his chickens before they hatch.
3. Literary Device: Irony
Irony generally occurs when the unexpected happens; in some cases, this could be the exact opposite of what you think makes sense according to how the characters have behaved so far.
Example: An elevator repairman spends the afternoon fixing an elevator that has been stuck on the sixth floor of the building. When he is finished and has packed all his tools, he heads towards the stairs to make his exit.
Note: While there is certainly nothing wrong with using the stairs, we find it rather strange for someone who makes a living fixing broken down elevators to not use the elevator he has just fixed in order to make his exit.
Example 2: Mrs. Costello had just finished telling her neighbor how her son Billy had always been deathly afraid of the water when Billy suddenly walked through the door and announced he had just been certified as a lifeguard.
Question to ask yourself: Would you expect someone who did not enjoy being in the water to suddenly become a lifeguard? The fact that Billy became a certified lifeguard is ironic!
Example 3: Tom boasted about how well he followed directions using a road map, yet the day of an important interview, Tom used a GPS throughout his drive.
Note: The irony here is that we know that Tom prefers using an actual paper map and has told people he is quite good at it! Using a GPS for an important interview is the opposite from what we would think Tom would do!
What is an example of irony in the short story The Necklace?
4. Persuasive Writing:
Without using personal pronouns I, me, my, our, or ours, write an opening paragraph of five solid sentences explaining why the minimum wage in Massachusetts should be ____________ an hour! Be sure your topic sentence simply states your viewpoint effectively. Do not use the words I think. Your persuasive paragraph itself will tell us what you think!
Example of a topic sentence: Living in Massachusetts can be quite expensive, but raising the minimum wage to ________ would help people pay their bills more easily.
Example 2 of a topic sentence: The cost of living continues to rise, especially in Massachusetts, and a new minimum wage of _______________ will soon be necessary for people who wish to continue being residents.
Remember, also, that topic sentences could do not have to always go first. You can build up to it with four good sentences that precede it!
5. More Persuasive Writing Topics:
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