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Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
Ch4: Main Ideas
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Ch4: Main Ideas

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  • 1. Chapter 4 Understanding Paragraphs: Topics and Main Ideas PowerPoint by Gretchen Starks-Martin St. Cloud State University, MN Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 2. THIS CHAPTER WILL SHOW YOU HOW TO: <ul><li>Identify topics </li></ul><ul><li>Identify main ideas in paragraphs </li></ul><ul><li>Recognize topic sentences </li></ul><ul><li>Understand implied main ideas </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 3. Paragraphs <ul><li>A Paragraph has four essential parts: </li></ul><ul><li>Topic: The one subject the whole paragraph is about. </li></ul><ul><li>Main idea: The point that the whole paragraph makes. </li></ul><ul><li>Details: The sentences that explain the main idea. </li></ul><ul><li>Transitions: Words and phrases to connect the ideas. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 4. General & Specific Ideas <ul><li>General Idea: </li></ul><ul><li>A broad idea that applies to a large number of individual items. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: Pies </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Specific Idea: </li></ul><ul><li>Refers to an individual item. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: apple, cherry, pumpkin, chocolate cream, etc. </li></ul></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 5. Identifying the Topic <ul><li>The topic is the subject of the entire paragraph. </li></ul><ul><li>Every sentence in a paragraph discusses the topic. </li></ul><ul><li>The one or two words you would choose as a title of the paragraph are the topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask yourself: What is the one thing the author is discussing throughout the paragraph? </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 6. Locate the Topic <ul><li>The Topic sentence is the most important idea: it is the idea that the whole paragraph explains or supports. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 7. Finding the Stated Main Idea <ul><li>Locate the topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Locate the most general sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>Study the rest of the paragraph. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 8. Topic Sentence First <ul><li>Most often the topic sentence is placed first in the paragraph. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Topic Sentence Detail Detail Detail
  • 9. Topic Sentence Last <ul><li>A writer leads up to the main point and then directly states it at the end. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Detail Detail Detail Topic Sentence
  • 10. Topic Sentence in the Middle <ul><li>The sentences before the topic sentence lead up to or introduce the main idea. Those that follow the main idea explain or describe it. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Detail Detail Topic Sentence Detail Detail
  • 11. Topic Sentence First and Last <ul><li>The main idea will appear at the beginning of a paragraph and again at the end. </li></ul><ul><li>To emphasize an important idea. </li></ul><ul><li>To explain an idea that needs clarification. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 12. Implied Main Ideas <ul><li>Imply - means to suggest an idea but not state it directly. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: “If that blue plaid shirt is back in my closet by noon, I’ll forget that it was missing.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Infer - means to reason out something based on what has been said. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: I wouldn’t even feed that cake to my dog. </li></ul></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 13. Figuring Out Implied Main Ideas <ul><li>What larger idea do these details point to ? </li></ul><ul><li>The wind was blowing at 35 mph. </li></ul><ul><li>The wind chill was 5 degrees below zero. </li></ul><ul><li>Snow was falling at the rate of 3 inches per hour. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 14. Figuring Out Implied Main Ideas in Paragraphs <ul><li>Writers sometimes leave their main idea unstated. </li></ul><ul><li>Stated Unstated </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Detail Detail Detail Detail Detail MAIN IDEA
  • 15. Figuring Out Implied Main Ideas Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Wind 35 mph Snow 3” per hour Blizzard - 5 degree wind chill
  • 16. Figuring Out Implied Main Ideas Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman The child refused to speak. The child then threw himself to the floor. What is the implied general idea? The child crossed his arms and turned his back.
  • 17. Steps to Find Implied Main Ideas in Paragraphs <ul><li>Find the topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Decide what the writer wants you to know about that topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Express this idea in your own words. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 18. What is the Implied Main Idea? <ul><li>Yellow is a bright, cheery color; it is often associated with spring and hopefulness. Green, since it is a color that appears frequently in nature (trees, grass, plants), has come to suggest growth and rebirth. Blue, the color of the sky, may suggest eternity, or endless beauty. Red, the color of both blood and fire, is often connected with strong feelings such as courage, lust, and rage. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 19. What is the Implied Main Idea? <ul><li>Topic: Colors </li></ul><ul><li> Details: General Idea: </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman Yellow - Spring Green – Growth Rebirth Blue - Eternity Red – Strong Feelings DIFFERENT COLORS HAVE DIFFERENT MEANINGS
  • 20. How to Know if You Have Made a Reasonable Inference <ul><li>The idea should be broad enough so that every sentence explains the idea. </li></ul><ul><li>Work through the paragraph, sentence by sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>Check to see that each sentence explains the idea. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 21. SELF-TEST SUMMARY <ul><li>Name and describe the four essential parts of a paragraph. </li></ul><ul><li>What sentence states the main idea of a paragraph? </li></ul><ul><li>Where is the topic sentence located? </li></ul><ul><li>What are implied main ideas? </li></ul><ul><li>How can one figure out implied main ideas? </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 22. Visit the Companion Website <ul><li>For additional readings, exercises, and Internet activities, visit this book’s Companion Website at: </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.ablongman.com/mcwhorter </li></ul><ul><li>If you need a user name and password, see your instructor. </li></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman
  • 23. TEST-TAKING TIPS <ul><li>Words used to identify MAIN IDEA: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Thesis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Central point </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Central idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most important idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Primary idea </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Phrases used to identify TOPIC: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This paragraph is primarily about… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This paragraph concerns… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This paragraph focuses on… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The best title for the paragraph would be… </li></ul></ul>Copyright 2008 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing by Longman

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