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EXTENSIVE READING ASSIGNMENT

“FINDING MAIN IDEAS IN PARAGRAPHS AND ESSAYS AND IDENTIFYING SUPPORTING DETAILS”

By : WA ODE IKA FRISKA NINING SYAFITRI PARWADIN

(09 231 049) (09 231 069) (09 231 077)

BAMBANG PERMADI WASITO (09 231 093)

ENGLISH EDUCATIONAL STUDY PROGRAM TEACHER TRAINING AND EDUCATION FACULTY DAYANU IKHSANUDDIN UNIVERSITY BAUBAU 2012

PREFACE
We say thanks for Allah SWT for blessing us so we can accomplish this assignment punctually. Our big thanks also for our Extensive Reading lecturer, Mr. La Mido, S.Pd., that always gives us guidance and directions. The title of our paper is Finding Main Ideas in Paragraphs and Essays and Identifying Supporting Details. It is purposed for enriching our knowledge about Reading Comprehension in English as non-native speaker, as well as for filling the role of this subject as an assignment. We do not forget to give thanks again to the members of our group for all seriousness, attention, and good teamwork. Hopefully, this paper can give advantages for the readers in improving their ability in English, especially in Reading Comprehension.

Baubau, March 29, 2012

The Writers

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TABLE OF CONTENT

PREFACE

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TABLE OF CONTENT

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CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION

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CHAPTER II DISCUSSION

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CHAPTER III CONCLUSION

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

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CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND Reading is one of the four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing). It is important to be learned and mastered by every individual. By reading, you can relax, interact with the feelings and thoughts, obtain information, and improve the science knowledge. According to Bowman, reading is an appropriate means to promote a lifelong learning (life-long learning). By learning reading, we can know how to read then give us a future. These which provides a technique to explore how "the world" wherever he chooses, and provides the opportunity to get a goal in life.

Reading is a way to get information from something that was written. Reading involves the introduction of symbols that make up a language. Read and hear is the second most common way to get information.

Reading is not an easy learning activity. Many factors affect student success in reading skill. One of factors that can be identified is about subject matter. In this chance, we will concern with Reading Comprehension about finding main ideas in paragraphs and essays and identifying supporting details.

1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT Based on the above explanation related to the background, the problem statements on this paper are: 1. How do we find main ideas in paragraphs and essays? 2. How do we identify supporting details?

1.3 OBJECTIVE THE PAPER The objective of this research aims to improve our reading skill in finding main ideas in paragraphs and essays and identifying supporting details.

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CHAPTER II DISCUSSION

Understanding the topic, the gist, or the larger conceptual framework of a textbook chapter, an article, a paragraph, a sentence or a passage is a sophisticated reading task. Being able to draw conclusions, evaluate, and critically interpret articles or chapters is important for overall comprehension in college reading. Textbook chapters, articles, paragraphs, sentences, or passages all have topics and main ideas. The topic is the broad, general theme or message. It is what some call the subject. The main idea is the "key concept" being expressed. Details, major and minor, support the main idea by telling how, what, when, where, why, how much, or how many. Locating the topic, main idea, and supporting details helps us understand the point(s) the writer is attempting to express. Identifying the relationship between these will increase our comprehension. 2.1 Finding Main Ideas in Paragraphs and Essays The relationship between a paragraph and an essay is symbiotic; we cannot write an essay without using paragraphs, and four or more consecutive paragraphs about the same subject matter become an essay. Both paragraphs and essays have a distinct beginning, middle and end. They are also both composed of five sections: A paragraph typically has five sentences, and an essay, five paragraphs. Paragraphs and essays differ in their length. Paragraphs are typically between five and six sentences long. They are composed of a topic sentence and four or five supporting details. Essays contain at least five paragraphs; they are composed of an introductory paragraph (which includes the thesis statement), at least three supporting paragraphs and a conclusion paragraph. In reading skill, main ideas and supporting details have a strong relationship because supporting details help us to better understand the main ideas. But, besides main ideas and supporting details, we have to remember that there is topic. The topic is the subject that the selection is about. The main idea can usually be located if you can determine what the topic is. To find the topic of a selection, ask the simple question, “Who or what is the selection about?” The topic tells what all or most of the sentences are about. EXAMPLE: Consumers concerned about the hazards or noise can reduce noise pollution in many ways. They can purchase noisy products such as garbage disposals and lawn mowers with reduced noise levels. They can also use sound-absorbing materials in their home. Carpeting can be installed instead of hard flooring, and cork and fabric can be used in rooms that tend to be noisy. Also, people can become less noisy themselves. They can learn to avoid shouting, to close doors without slamming them, and to play radios, TV sets, and stereos at moderate levels. TOPIC OF THIS PARAGRAPH: Noise pollution or noise pollution in the home. The main idea is the most important idea in a paragraph and an essay. It helps readers remember important information. The main idea of a paragraph and an essay tells the topic of the paragraph, minus all the details. The main idea is the point of the paragraph. It is the most important thought about the topic. Main idea is chief point an author is making about a topic. It sums up the author’s primary message. To figure out the main idea, ask yourself this question: “What is being said about the person, thing, or idea (the topic)?” Finding the main idea of a paragraph or an essay is along with making an inference, finding the author's purpose or understanding vocabulary.
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Once we can find the topic, we are ready to find the main idea. The author can locate the main idea in different places within a paragraph. The main idea is usually a sentence, and it is usually the first sentence. The writer then uses the rest of the paragraph to support the main idea. In some paragraphs, the main idea is not directly stated in any one sentence. So, to find the main idea we must: a. Find the topic. b. Decide what the writer wants us to know about the topic. c. Express this idea in our own words. To find the main idea of a paragraph, first find the topic of the paragraph. Then, find what all the sentences say about the topic or what does the author intend to say about the topic. Let's use the paragraph below as an example. First find the topic, and then look for the main idea. Summer is a wonderful time to spend at West Beach. It is a beach with lightcolored, soft sand. The coastline goes on for a long way and many people enjoy walking along it. Children like to play in the surf and walk along the rocks that are visible at low tide. This is a fun beach for people of all ages. In this paragraph: The Topic is West Beach The Main Idea (What the Writer is saying about the Topic) is that Summer is a Wonderful Time at West Beach. Here is another example: The movie Apollo 13 was a blockbuster for the summer of 1995. It is an exciting story about space exploration. In the movie, the astronauts get in trouble while they are trying to return to Earth. People in the audience are on the edge of their seats waiting to see what happens. What makes it even more exciting is that it is a true story. In this paragraph: The Topic is the Movie Apollo 13 The Main Idea is in the First Sentence: Apollo 13 was a Blockbuster for the summer of 1995. While the main idea is usually in the first sentence, the next most common placement is in the last sentence of a paragraph. The author gives supporting information first and then makes the point in the last sentence. Here's a paragraph we can use as an example. Try to locate the topic and the main idea. Most teenagers and young adults do not know what they want to do for the rest of their lives. It is a big decision. There are a number of things you can do to narrow the choices. For example you can take an interest test, do some research on your own about a career, try volunteer work in the field in which you are interested, or "job-shadow", in which you spend a day with a person who is working in a field that interests you. These are just a few helpful ideas as you begin to choose a career. In this paragraph: The Topic is Jobs or Career Choices. The Main Idea is a Few Ideas to Help the Reader Choose a Career.

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Finally, an author might put the main idea in the middle of a paragraph. The author will spend a few sentences introducing the topic, present the main idea, then spend the rest of the paragraph supporting it. This can make the main idea more difficult to find. See if we can find the topic and main idea in the paragraph below. The United States seems to be in love with the idea of going out to eat. Because of this, a real variety of restaurants has come about specializing in all kinds of foods. McDonald's is the king of a subgroup of restaurants called fast-food restaurants. Chances are, no matter where you live, there is a McDonald's restaurant near you. There are even McDonald's in the Soviet Union. Now McDonald's is trying something new. It is called McDonald's Express and there is a test site in Peabody, Massachusetts. It is part of a Mobil gas station. This allows you to fill up with gas and fill up on food at the same time. What will they think of next? In this paragraph: The Topic is McDonald’s. The Main Idea is in the Middle of the Paragraph, in the third sentence: McDonald’s is the King of Fast Food.

2.2 Identifying Supporting Details Supporting details are specific facts, evidence, or ideas used to develop, expand, and support the more general main point of a paragraph. We should provide enough supporting detail in our paragraphs so the reader can easily understand what we are trying to communicate. Supporting details are important to develop and support the main idea of the paragraph, making our argument stronger, more interesting, and easier to understand. Supporting details will paint a clearer and more complete picture of what it is we are trying to describe or explain to the reader.

In general, a paragraph starts with a main idea followed by supporting details that make up the body of the paragraph. Paragraphs should be structured in the following way: 1) 2) 3) Main Idea (states the main point of the paragraph) Supporting Details (reasons/examples to support the main idea) Closing Sentence (restates the main point of the paragraph) Think of a paragraph as a house - the main idea is the roof, the supporting details are the walls that support the roof, and the closing sentence is the foundation of the house.

Types of Supporting Details 1. COMPARISONS in which one thing is shown to be like another. EXAMPLE: Skilled college students are like the unskilled students in their desire for a diploma. 2. CONTRASTS in which one thing is shown to differ from another. EXAMPLE: Skilled students are different from unskilled students in that they use a method to read a textbook.

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3. STATISTICS EXAMPLE: 75 percent of the students who do not attend class regularly receive grades of C or worse. 4. GRAPHS EXAMPLE: Figure 9-1 is one type of graph. 5. QUOTATIONS from authorities EXAMPLE: Professor Smity admits, “I tell students they don’t need to attend my class if they don’t want to. I know, however, that if they don’t come, they won’t pass.” 6. VIVID DESCRIPTIONS EXAMPLE: The students took the exam from the professor’s hand, quickly looked at the grade, gave a sigh or relief and began to smile. There are two kinds of supporting details. They are Major and Minor. MAJOR (PRIMARY) DETAILS: These types of details directly explain or support the main idea of the paragraph. MINOR (SECONDARY) DETAILS: These types of details explain other details in the paragraph. Example: Main Idea: “There are three reasons why Mexico is a popular vacation spot.” Major Detail: “First, the weather is extremely warm.” Minor Detail: “This is attractive to vacationing Canadians looking to escape the snow.” Let’s look at some sample paragraphs and break things down: The underlined sentence is the MAIN POINT of the paragraph The bolded sentences are MAJOR SUPPORTING DETAILS The italicized sentences are MINOR SUPPORTING DETAILS EXAMPLE 1: “There are many factors that contribute to student success in college. The first factor for success is having a goal in mind before establishing a course of study. The goal may be as general as wanting to better educate oneself for the future. A more specific goal would be to earn a teaching credential. A second factor related to student success is self-motivation and commitment. A student who wants to succeed and works toward that desire will find success easily as a college student. A third factor linked to student success is using college services. Most beginning college students fail to realize how important it can be to see a counselor or consult with a librarian or financial aid officer.” EXAMPLE 2: “There are three reasons why Canada is one of the best countries in the world. First, Canada has an excellent health care system. All Canadians have access to medical services at a reasonable price. Second, Canada has a high standard of education. Students are taught by well-trained teachers and are encouraged to continue studying at university. Finally, Canada's cities are clean and efficiently managed. Canadian cities have many parks and lots of space for people to live. As a result, Canada is a desirable place to live.”

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CHAPTER III CONCLUSION

In reading aspect, main ideas and supporting details have a strong relationship. Supporting details help us to better understand the main ideas. Main idea is the point that the whole paragraphs makes and supporting details are the sentences that explain the main idea. To find the main idea in a paragraph, first find the topic of the paragraph. Then, find what all the sentences say about the topic or what does the author intend to say about the topic. And for identifying the supporting details, we must pay attention with main idea because in general it is followed by supporting details that make up the body of the paragraph.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

Cuesta College. 2012. Identifying Main Topics, Main Ideas, and Supporting Details. Retrieved on 2 April 2012, from http://academic.cuesta.edu/acasupp/as/308.HTM Langen, John. 2012. Main Ideas and Supporting Details. University of Hanoi. Retrieved on 2 April 2012, from http://manoa.hawaii.edu/learning/PDFhandouts/StudySkills/MAIN%20IDEAS%20AN D%20SUPPORTING.pdf Marco, Christopher. 2008. Supporting Details. Mohawk College. Retrieved on 3 April 2012, from www.mohawkcollege.ca/ Oswego City School District. 2011. Lesson Supporting Details. Studyzone.org. Retrieved on 2 April, 2012, from http://www.studyzone.org/testprep/ela4/h/supportingdetailsl4.cfm Roel, Kelly. 2012. Reading for the Main Idea. About.com. Retrieved on 2 April 2012, from http://testprep.about.com/od/tipsfortesting/a/Main_Idea.htm Vener, Diane. 2002. Finding the Main Idea. Landmark School, Inc. Retrieved on 2 April 2012, from http://www.landmarkoutreach.org/

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