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De La Salle - College of Saint Benilde School of Multidisciplinary Studies English Area COMSK1-X Hand-out # 4 Part 2 Nature of Reading Main

in and Supporting Ideas Ms. Jennifer Jastia-Lim

Identifying the Main Ideas in a Text (Source: Reading Pathways by Fitzpatrick,1995) Topic the one idea that the writer develops in a paragraph To identify the topic: Read the paragraph, and ask yourself, What is this all about? You need to examine the specific details in the paragraph. advantages of career planning identifying ones learning style Topic Sentence the sentence which states the main idea it is the writers opinion or limitation of the topic predicts the discussion of the topic and controls that discussion serves as a transition between a paragraphs topic and its supporting details contains the controlling idea of the paragraph Topic Controlling Idea

All college students should be required to take liberal-arts courses during each term of their college career. To write a chemistry lab report, you must complete five tasks. Supporting (Specific) Details the sentences that give details related to the topic Major Details general statements that directly support the topic Minor Details support and elaborate the major details Thesis Statement this is the topic sentence in longer, multi-paragraphs articles and chapters

Positions of Topic Sentences: Placement in Paragraph Beginning End Beginning and end Purpose Introduces supporting details Summarizes supporting details Introduces and summarizes supporting details

In case of unstated topic sentences, you must develop one using the following procedure: 1. 2. 3. 4. What is the paragraph about? (Topic) What information about the topic are you given? (Supporting details) What conclusion can you draw from the details? Formulate your conclusion into a topic sentence.

Sample Paragraph: Gay people meet each other in various contexts; in public situations, in the workplace, in gay meeting places, and in social contexts of friends and acquaintances. Within each context, a different set of behaviors is employed by which gay people recognize someone else as gay and determine the potential for establishing a relationship. These behaviors include such nonverbal signaling as frequency and length of interaction, posture, proximity, eye contact, eye movement and facial gestures, touch, affect displays, and paralinguistic signals. The constraints of each situation and the personal styles of the communicators create great differences in the effectiveness and ease with which these behaviors are displayed.

Components of Paragraphs and Essays Paragraph The topic sentence defines the writers opinion, predicts the discussion, and controls the paragraph. The supporting details develop the main idea in the topic sentence. The concluding sentence usually restates the topic sentence and supporting details or provides a logical conclusion. Essay The thesis statement identifies the writers opinion, predicts the discussion, and controls the paragraph. The body paragraphs develop the main idea in the thesis statement. The conclusion summarizes the thesis statement and the topic sentences of the body paragraphs or provides a logical conclusion.

Example: Categories of Religion (Source: Sociology in Our Times by Kendall,2007)

Although it is difficult to establish exactly when religious rituals first began, anthropologists have concluded that all known groups over the past 100,000 years have had some form of religion. Religions have been classified into four main categories based on their dominant belief: simple supernaturalism, animism, theism, and transcendental idealism. In very simple pre-industrial societies, religion often takes the form of simple supernaturalism the belief that supernatural forces affect peoples lives either positively or negatively. This type of religion does not acknowledge specific gods or supernatural spirits but focuses instead on impersonal forces that may exist in people or natural objects. By contrast, animism is the belief that plants, animals, or other elements of the natural world are endowed with spirits or life forces having an impact on events in society. Animism is identified with early hunting and gathering societies and with many Native American societies, in which everyday life was not separated from the elements of the natural world.

Introduction

Thesis Statement

Supporting Detail 1 (topic sentence) Major detail

Supporting Detail 2 (topic sentence) Major detail Minor detail

The third category of religion is theism a belief Supporting Detail 3 in a god or gods. Horticultural societies were among the (topic sentence) first to practice monotheism a belief in a single, supreme being or god who is responsible for significant events such Major detail as the creation of the world. Three of the major world religions Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are Minor detail monotheistic. By contrast, Shinto and a number of indigenous religions of Africa are forms of polytheism, a Major Detail belief in more than one god. The fourth category of religion, transcendent idealism, is nontheistic because it does not focus on worship of a god or gods. Transcendent idealism is a belief in sacred principles of thought and conduct. Principles such as truth, justice, affirmation of life, and tolerance for others are central tenets of transcendental idealists, who seek an elevated state of consciousness in which they can fulfill their true potential. Despite its many categories, religion is the same for many people. They believe that it provides the answers for seemingly unanswerable questions about the meaning of life and death. Supporting Detail 4 (topic sentence) Major Detail Minor Detail Other Details

Conclusion

De La Salle College of Saint Benilde School of Multidisciplinary Studies English Area COMSK1X (Lec) Worksheet # 5 Main and Supporting Ideas Name ______________________________________Section _____________ Date _________

Activity: Inferring Unstated Topic Sentences Instruction: Read the texts and answer the questions that will be given to you after the discussion Sample Paragraph: Three of the five patients using permanent artificial implants are now dead; the other two are confined to the hospital after suffering strokes and other complications. The strokes, which have struck at least four patients, appear to be caused by blood clots generated by the Jarvik 7 artificial heart, the most widely-used device. Various patients have also suffered internal bleeding, respiratory problems, suppression of the immune system and recurrent infections. 1. ________________________________________________________________ 2. ________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________ 3. ________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________ 4. ________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________

According to family legend, the earliest pieced quilt made in America was stitched in 1704 by Sarah Sedgewick Everett, wife of the Governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. By 1774, George Washington was buying quilts in Belvoir, Virginia,

presumably to take back to Martha in Mount Vernon. As the frontier kept advancing westward, quilts moved too. In addition to sleeping under them, homesteaders kept warm by hanging quilts over drafty doorways and windows. Worn-out quilts could be cut into strips and stuffed into the chinks of log cabins. If the money ran out, they were used to pay debts, as well as tithes to the church. 1. 2. _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ 3. _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ 4. _____________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________ (Source: Reading Pathways by Fitzpatrick and Ruscica, 1995)