English Department

Writing Booklet 1 / Term 1
Personal Narrative

Name: _________________________

Grade 9 / section: _________________________

Date: _________________________


• Setting: Place and time –where is it? Be sure your reader can see where the action is taking place. relevant details and dialogue  a clear sequence of events  an exploration of the meaning of the experience Elements of a Personal Narrative The more of each element a narrative essay addresses. A personal narrative should contain the following:  a well-defined personal experience  vivid.Personal Narrative A personal narrative tells about an important and meaningful personal experience. the more likely that narrative essay will be effective in communicating the writer's point and effectively developing the essay's rhetorical goal. • Persona: What are some characteristics about you that you want your reader to understand? How do you want readers to perceive you? Describe your behavior in order to convey these points. It should also be expressed in your thesis/controlling idea and developed in the body of your essay. Craft your paper with vivid descriptions. As with any essay. sentence variations and other rhetorical strategies to unveil the nature of the events and your reactions to these events. you can help readers share your reactions to the experience you are recreating. 2 . One event should lead to another. • Theme: The theme is the dominant idea expressed in the work. Do your best to make it clear to your reader. • Tone and voice: How do you want readers to feel? Through voice and tone. your narrative essay must have a point (thesis). • Plot: You establish the plot by a causal linking of events.

My eyes followed the woman’s hands as they fluttered through the violins like little birds. After several scales and an attempt at playing Vivaldi’s Concerto in A Minor. I lifted my bow to the strings and began to play. I lifted my bow to the strings and began to play. You’ll just know when you have the right one. I wanted a violin that I could merge with. but with a tint of red. It was pretty enough to look at. I played the violin. and picked up the last. The Violin Ann Nordmeyer I stood in the Burlington Violin Shop and gazed longingly at the rows of violins hanging from the ceiling. In the end. It had places where the varnish had worn away. just three years earlier. like my old practice violin. and disappointment settled in the pit of my stomach like a rock. Looking into the violin. smooth layer of varnish slickly coating the violin like honey. This one was beautiful. When I tried hard. I could sometimes coax a clear sound out of it. It just didn’t feel right to me. But as I warmed to the instrument. I wanted a good violin. a practice violin. Despite it’s pretty tone. with the grain running vertically up and down the instrument in tiny. I had the cheapest level of violin. with worn spots that made it look antique.Read this essay. I picked up the next. something seemed wrong about the instrument. however. But I was not impressed by its sound. then moving on. Looking into this one. But usually. I set the violin down. not the viola. set the beautiful violin down.” the woman told me. sinking into the instrument to make beautiful music. “Play scales and pieces you know well to test them out. Some appeared new. a finger resting on a scroll. something seemed wrong. honey-colored lines. Reading the small tag that was pasted to the bottom. I confirmed what I thought – the violin had been made in 1886. “Try these violins. This one was almost honey-colored. I sighed. with a shining. a scratchy. a violin for beginners. and then fill out the scaffold below. almost like a viola.” I looked into the small f-shaped hole in the side of the violin I held. and as beautiful as it was. I was finally going to change that. a deep reddish-brown. squeaky sound covered my attempts to make beautiful music like a layer of dust that could not be brushed away. ranging from full size all the way down to tiny violins that looked like toys for a doll. not a violin pretending to be a viola. playing seemed to get 3 . I learned that it had only been made earlier this year. and it was covered in an array of nicks and bumps from years of being shuffled around. The violin had a rich sound. I began to play. At first it squeaked and scratched. however. others were old and antique. just like my old violin. three select violins lay on the counter in front of me. I could see that the violin had been made in Czechoslovakia in 2000.

the dust cleared.easier.” Slowly. “This is the one. out of tune sometimes. as I played. My fingers floated along the strings.” I thought to myself. as if saying.” 4 . “This is where I belong. My bow settled into the strings. but they kept dancing over the fingerboard. “I just know it.

after. fear. slammed shut… * conjunctions and time connectives eg when. happiness Resolution - normality returns * complex sentences *usually past tense *can have dialogue Coda/feelings 5 . earlier A series of events *figurative language to that develop the describe eg simile … as complication hot as the sun eg metaphor … trees are the lungs of the earth eg… personification … the sea roared *descriptive language of mood eg excitement. next. NARRATIVE TEXT TYPE Purpose: to entertain and instruct. defined characters eg Ahmed was a young boy… Complication * action verbs eg curled (conflict) up…. show a moral TITLE Language Orientation *particular nouns and who what where adjectives to refer to and when why describe. then.

Prompt 2 Imagine that you find a page torn from a short story that has only two lines: "That’s how I became known as a ‘Hero.Choose one of the TWO prompts.Create another story that could still end with this page. Think about the details of the event and write a story that tells about what happened. 6 . and share how you felt after the event. Your narrative should show your readers why you decided to make a stand or try something that took nerve. a time when you didn't follow the crowd or a time when you stood up for your beliefs.’ THE END" . Prompt 1 Choose a time when you did something that took a lot of nerve. give specifics on the events.

important objects. distances. Describe the CONFLICT in one sentence: (Then add details!) RESOLUTION: (How did the conflict end? In that moment? In the future?) SO WHAT (theme): Why does this event matter to you NOW? How has it changed you and the way you see other people or the world? 7 . lighting. feel. color. BRAINSTORMING: Setting: Describe where these events took place as if you were giving detailed instructions for the creation of a movie sets. smells. Think in terms of space. Conflict: List things that CAUSED or LEAD UP TO the conflict. texture.

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I checked my spelling. and chose adjectives appropriate for the noun and the situation. My ideas are clear and focused. I checked my capitals.____ Conventions 1. I give enough thoughtful. and subject/verb agreement.____ Sentence Structure 1.____ 5. My ending is well thought out. insightful and supporting details. when possible. My paper has a strong beginning.Self.____ Organization 1. My paper has a main idea.____ 4. I have some long sentences and some short sentences to make my paper interesting. Sentences are smooth and easy to read.____ 2.Editing Check List Ideas and Content 1. My words show most the time.____ 2. The topic makes a point or tells a story and the details support it. specific words. specific nouns._____ 3. I used specific verbs.______ 2. Paragraphs only talk about one thing.____ 4. strong.____ 2. I chose accurate. especially those that I had questions about. I fixed my choppy sentences.____ Word Choice 1.____ 3.____ 3. The transitions between sentences and paragraphs are smooth. not just tell. I tried to used active verbs. I checked my verb tenses and made sure I stayed consistent and used the correct tenses.____ 3.____ 11 .____ 2.____ 3.

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Personal Narrative Rubric: --------/ 16 Well-crafted. spots. captures a sense of the Narrative”) narrative and is creative. interesting. and narrative developed incomplete and effective narrative limited 3 2 4 1 TITLE An engaging title that A title that fits the narrative. factors leading up to it or Factors leading to the conflict the resolution more. etc. Factors leading to the are clear. not carefully worked inappropriate for style that is clear and through. Strong. conflict are interesting. engages the reader. proper grammar. them in detail little detail including description. conflict is clear and interesting. dialogue. DESCRIPTION and Lots of rich detail Specific moments retold in Overview of experiences Brief account of SETTING recreating one or more some detail rather than a recreation of experience with events or moments. this purpose. effective Narrative not fully Narrative is insightful. imagery STYLE and Extra attention to Clear language and proper Some confusing or rough Style that’s GRAMMAR crafting language in a grammar. Resolution to the conflict is Resolution to the clear. needs to develop the or does not exist. (Sentence variety.) 14 . CONFLICT Central problem in the Central problem in the story Memoir has conflict but Conflict is unclear story is clear and is clear. free of errors. A generic title (“My No title.