Image source: http://www.geocities.com/hollywood/hills/6396/surrender.jpg
Before you begin to post your homework assignments (see instructions below) it might behoove you to get some advice from writers other than Ballenger. For example, read the excerpt here on lead-ins by Judy Hilliard from her text, "Completing the Essay."
[NOTE: the entire article can be found on the San Jose State University website HERE]
How to Write a good lead-in
The first few sentences of your essay are particularly important; first impressions, as you know, are often lasting ones. The beginning of your essay, then, must catch the readers’ attention and make them want to keep reading. Recall the way you read a magazine, reading a paragraph or tow of each article that looks promising. If the first few paragraphs hold your interest, you read on. When you write your own introductory paragraph, assume that you have only a few sentences to attract your reader.
Consequently, you must pay particular attention to making those first lines especially interesting and well-written.
In some essays, you thesis statement alone may be controversial or striking enough to capture the readers’ attention. At other times, however, you will want to use the introductory device called a lead-in.
The lead-in catches the readers’ attention, announces the subject matter and tone of your essay (humorous, satiric, serious, etc), and sets up, or leads into the presentation of your thesis and essay map.
Here are some suggestions and examples of lead-ins:
1. A paradoxical or intriguing statement:
“Eat two chocolate bars and call me in the morning,” say the psychiatrist to his patient. Such advice sounds like a sugar fanatic’s dream, but recent studies have, indeed, confirmed that chocolate positively affects depression, anxiety.
2. An arresting statistic or shocking statement:
One of every seven women living in Smith County will be raped this year, according to a recent report prepared by Country Rape Information and Counseling Services.
3. A quotation or literary allusion:
“I think on-stage nudity is disgusting, shameful, and damaging to all things American,” says actress Shelly Winters. “But if I were 22 with a great body, it would be artistic, tasteful, patriotic, and progressive religious experience.”
4. a relevant story, joke, or anecdote:
A group of young women were questioning Saturday afternoon shoppers about their views on the 1982 defeat of the Equal Rights Amendment. One old man in overalls answered, “ERA? Well, I like it just fine. But you know, I can’t pick it up on my darned old radio after dark.” That was problem – too few people knew what the ERA really stood for.
5. A description, often used for emotional appeal:
With one eye blackened, one arm in a cast, and third-degree burns on both her legs, the pretty, blond two-year0old seeks corner of rooms, refuses to speak, and shakes violently at eh sound of loud nosed. Tammy is not the victim of a war or a natural disaster; rather, she is the helpless victim of her parents, one of the thousands of children who suffer daily form America’s hidden crime, child abuse.
6. An analogy or contrast:
The Romans kept geese on their Capitol Hill to cackle alarm in the event of attack by night Modern Americans, despite their technology, have hardly improved on the old system of protection. According to the latest Safety Council report, almost any door with standard locks can be opened easily with a common plastic credit card.
7. Statement of a problem or a popular misconception:
Some people believe that poetry is written only by aging beatniks or solemn, mournful men and women with suicidal tendencies. The Poetry in the Schools Program is out to correct that erroneous point of view.
Thinking of a good lead-in is often difficult when you sit down to begin your essay. Many writes, in fact skip the lead-in until the first draft is written. They compose their thesis and essay map first and then write the body of the essay, saving the lead-in and conclusion for last. As you write the middle of your essay, you might discover an especially interesting piece of information you might want to save to use as part of your lead-in.
Avoiding Errors in your Lead-in:
Make sure your lead-in introduces your thesis – a frequent weakness in introductions is an interesting lead-in but no smooth or clear transition to the thesis statement.
Make your lead-in Brief
Don’t begin with an apology or complaint – i.e., “I don’t know about coin collecting but…” or “This assignment is boring, but…” These do nothing to entice your reader.
Don’t Assume Your Audience Already Knows Your Subject Matter
Stay clear of overused lead-ins – If composition teachers had a dollar for every essay that began with a dictionary definition, we could all retire to the Rivera. Leave the dictionary alone and fine a better way to begin. Using a question for you lead-in had become overused also.
Source: Hilliard, Judy. "Completing the Essay." San Jose State U. 16 Oct. 2006 [http://www.sjsu.edu/larc/tutorials/writing/wst/completing.pdf].
From Tuesday's in-class activity:
What is a lead-in? What should a lead-in do or not do in a research essay?
[See pp. 183-184 in Ballenger text.]
Write your own lead-in.
1. First read pages 184 to 187.
2. Write a lead-in to their own paper using one of the approaches listed on pages 186 – 187.
3.Go back to pages 186 to 187. Write a second lead-in using a different approach from the one you did in class. Type them both up sometime before the next class (the lead-in from the class activity and the second one you did as homework) and post them in 2 places:
[HERE] and on Turnitin.com.
In your own words, please write something like, “here are the two sample lead-ins I created per the stipulations of our assignment.” Start each of the two lead-ins you created by indicating specifically what “kind” of lead-in you’ve used. For example, if you used the “anecdote” approach for one of them, then write “anecdote” first and then type the lead in.
Posted by lhobbs at October 17, 2006 09:08 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
Imagine sitting down in front of your television set watching your favorite episode of Friends. You have just finished dinner and you feel so full that you cannot possibly take one more gulp of water or bite of spaghetti. Meanwhile, on television, Monica and Rachel are discussing Rachel’s men problems, and before you know it Rachel reaches into the refrigerator and pills out an ice cold Diet Coke. You, not necessarily noticing the product, all of a sudden get a craving of thirst and want a Diet Coke. This is an example of good product placement. Notice, that you want a Diet Coke, not a Diet Pepsi or water. Product placement is everywhere, but is it necessary? The evolution of product placement is unwarranted yet vital to an advertisers influence on a consumer.
“Welcome to the world of product placement, that twilight zone in which it is hard to distinguish between the film that you have paid to see and the advertisement or promotional gimmick that you might have wanted to avoid, if anyone had given you a choice (Segrave 95). Advertisements are taking over everything. It is nearly impossible to watch a film or television program or even walk down the street without being bombarded with product placements. Are product placements a fair way to influence the audience to buy the product? The evolution of product placement is unwarranted yet vital to an advertisers influence on a consumer.
Posted by: Katie M. at October 18, 2006 09:02 AM
Here are my two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
Background/Scene: Too often, young girls open a magazine only to be bombarded with photographs of the perfectly built, gorgeous model. Spread across the glossy pages, posed in artificial self-confident positions, lies the flawless, air-brushed woman. These publications are indicative of the pressure society places on young women. Oftentimes, these magazines advertise various ways women can look and feel wonderful simply by losing weight. Is there a link between today's American female population and their obsession with beauty and compulsion to be thin and the media's portrayal of having the perfect body? I believe women feel inadequate and incomplete after viewing a television commercial or peruse a fashion magazine. The ideal that is represented is that people, especially young women, are shown images that equate perfection with being thin and beautiful. The perception to be mirror images of the models portrayed is self-destructive. In all likelihood, the majority of girls today do not stand a chance of achieving that look the media is obsessed with promoting. Females are suffering from severe eating disorders trying to become the perfect woman. They are placing themselves at a dangerously high risk simply to be accepted by society. It is irresponsible for the media to perpetuate this myth that stereotypes success and happiness with one's appearance. The media should use its power to portray young females in a more positive, realistic manner and stop insinuating that the key to success beings with being ultra thin.
(This is my lead in that I also posted for my research proposal)
Quotation: Do you believe from your experience that young women are influenced by the media (ie magazines, TV) in regard to this disease? When asked this question, Kathleen Kingsbury replied “Yes, I believe all women are influenced by the media. I do not believe this is a cause of eating disorders because if so we would all be sick. But I do believe that it makes many of us feel bad about ourselves as we can not possibly measure up to the unrealistic beauty ideals portrayed in advertisements, TV., movies, etc.” (Kingsbury). This goes to show that many females do compare themselves to what the see in their everyday lives. When women are surrounded by these images of emaciated figures and Hollywood stars looking skinny and being glamorous, they ultimately assume that with skinniness comes a life of happiness and success. With so many reality television shows out today telling people to loose weight, it is no wonder why so many females feel dissatisfied with their bodies. Young female viewers see these "perfect" figures everywhere and think that people will not accept them if they are overweight.
Posted by: Katie L. section 27 at October 18, 2006 02:55 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I have made.
Did you know almost half the children in America today are living with divorced parents? Thats 50 percent of the children who spend their time in different households with so called "incomplete families."
If you lived hundred years ago in the Untied States, you would have thought it was very common to see a family with a mother, father, and children all living in the same home. Now, this type of family you would say is very uncommon. Divorce over the last few decades has gone up so high, almost half the kids in schools are living in two families.
Posted by: Nick L at October 18, 2006 02:57 PM
Here are the two lead-ins I wrote for my research paper based on the advice Ballenger gave. The first that I did I would consider dialogue. However, it is not dialogue between two people, instead just my opinion, so therefore it may be considered a personal quote.
When I think of the clothing that I have owned since I was a little girl, the things that I once wore, I would never want to wear, or expect anyone else to ever wear, again. Clothing styles in women are an ever changing thing. Trends come and go, and then come around again, each time incorporating something new, being changed in some way, and being influenced differently.
Over the past fifty years, women’s clothing styles have changed immensely into what they are today...
My second lead-in uses the technique of an announcement. I thought that it would be easy to clearly state what my paper is going to be about.
It is a popular conception that trends in clothing repeat themselves overtime. In all reality, though, fashion is always changing, and over the past fifty years it has developed and progressed into what it is today. Women’s styles have repeated themselves, and have been influenced from places, people, and even events in history. New trends are constantly arising, and what women wear today is a reflection of the mood of society as a whole.
Posted by: Lauren S. at October 18, 2006 03:01 PM
Here are the two sample leads I created based on Ballenger’s advice:
Profile: Harriett Tubman led us through the underground railroad, SoJourner Truth fought for freedom, and Rosa Parks didn’t give up her seat. Who are they? These are the women before us who helped shaped the world we live in today.
Quotation: “I can do for you what Martin did for the people…ran by the man but the women keep the tempo.”
Laurisa Jackson Section 027
Posted by: Laurisa Jackson at October 18, 2006 03:18 PM
Here are two sample lead-ins I created.
The first one was a question.
What is your first reaction when you notice on the cover of a tabloid a current celebrity wasting away to nothing? When you flip through fashion magazine like Cosmo, Glamour, or Vogue, how do you feel? Do weight loss advertisements next to extremely thin models make you feel self-conscious?
My second was a background lead-in.
The public loves hearing about celebrities’ lives and problems. The media seems to put a lot of pressure on celebrities to have this perfect image, set by their standards. This could be the cause for celebrities to want to become “perfect”. Pressure to become perfect is now effecting teens today.
Posted by: Whitney W at October 18, 2006 03:20 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
Cancer without a doubt is one of the top killers of women. Many women can spit out random facts of the various forms of cancers. However, when it comes to Human Papillomavirus (HPV) many women draw a blank. HPV is not a cancer but rather a virus or STD that if not treated with the proper care can lead to cancer (cervical cancer). This virus affects one in three women ( ) and in some cases leads to cervical cancer and if not caught leads to death. “HPV is not a death sentence” (Lingenfelter). It is most important for women to know that when diagnosed with HPV it is not the end; it’s merely a wake up call. After getting the diagnose it is important to just be careful and take charge.
What are the dangers of the Human papillomavirus over women twenty and over? All women know that there are so many kinds of cancer. Yet when it comes to HPV a lot of women lack knowledge and don’t necessarily know that it can lead to a life threatening disease. When questioned about the virus many women are unaware of the risks and causes. Why is this life threatening virus not known about more widely to women. When it comes to life and death situations all are very aware, why is it different when it comes to this?
Posted by: Sophia. W Section 23 at October 18, 2006 03:46 PM
Good afternoon Professor Hobbs,
Here are my two lead-ins:
A second grade class is starting their special for the day, music class. All the students are enjoying themselves and participating except for one, Chris. While the other children are singing songs, Chris stares blankly out the window. He gets frustrated when the whole class plays instruments and has fits when he has to play with other students. The music teacher tries to get him involved but it rarely works. Chris is a child of autism. His music teacher would like to see Chris participate more in class so they contacted a music therapist to work with him outside the classroom.
Have you ever sat down, listened to a song and tried to break it down into different musical elements? Recently I was given an assignment where I had to create a visual representation of a song using different musical elements. To my surprise, I was having incredible difficulty and asked a friend to help. She sat down and figured out the basics with in a few minutes when it took me an hour to understand the beat. My friend could not understand why I was having such trouble and I said to her "I have always had a problem with listening." She then jokingly replied, "Maybe you have autism." Now autism is nothing to joke about, many children suffer from it all over the world, but her comment made me think about how difficult music must be for autistic children.
Posted by: Andrea N. at October 18, 2006 04:12 PM
Here are two sample lead-ins that I have created
The numbers are staggering; in the last decade the number of seniors in high school who have at least tried steroids has risen sharply. An even more surprising thing is the amazingly low numbers of school districts who have opted to do nothing about it. Many school districts test for recreational drugs, but in kids this age, steroids can be just as, if not more dangerous. Many will argue that the steroid problem in the high schools of America has not yet reached the problem status that would require testing. I believe legislators have turned a blind eye in an attempt to save money but it now time for something to be done.
Anecdote (with question):
Imagine that your son or daughter came home and told you that when they came in to the locker room after practice they found an empty syringe lying on the floor. What would you do? The biggest problem with the scene that I just described is that it is becoming all too common in high schools across America. Anabolic steroid use has reached epidemic proportions and I believe that is it is time for our elected legislators to do something about it.
Posted by: Cody M. at October 18, 2006 05:18 PM
Lead # 1 Question
When is the last time you have hit or been hit by a whitetail deer, while driving your car? In fact when is the last time you have even seen a whitetail deer near the road when you were driving you car? If your answer is, it’s been a while, then you’re probably among many Pennsylvania hunters and people who believe that the deer population is dropping. What are the reasons that the deer population is dropping? In this essay that’s exactly what we are going to find out.
Lead #2 Scene
In the six years I have been hunting and ten years I have been watching whitetail deer, it seems that the number of deer is dropping. Don Gibson, who has been hunting whitetails in Pennsylvania for 38 years, says that. “20 years ago you would see 100 deer in a day, and now you’re lucky to see 20 or 25 in a day now” (Gibson, Interview)* I agree with him, since I have seen the deer disappear right before my own eyes. Why is this and what is is happening to the whitetail deer population? Is it over hunting, lack of food, or predation? That is exactly what we are going to explore and find out in the essay.
* Gibson, Donald. “Personal Interview.” 30 September 2006
Posted by: Matt G. at October 18, 2006 06:11 PM
Here are my two lead-ins based on advice from my Ballenger text:
“To be, or not to be; that is the question.” We all know that this statement comes from William Shakespeare. Many of us know, as well, that it comes from Hamlet. From his plays and other works comes many famous quotations, statements, and phrases. Although these such phrases are important, the very words they are comprised of are of even more importance to the English language. Many of the words Shakespeare used to create these clichés he actually made up himself.
How many words are in the English language? Millions? Billions? Trillions? Obviously, it is an ever-changing number; people are adding new words with definitions and modifying current ones every day. On average, a “well-educated” person knows correct pronunciations and definitions of close to 4,000 words. If I told you that one man not only knew more than 17,000 words, but created nearly 3,000 of them (that we still used today), would you be able to guess who it is? If you guessed Snoop Dog, you’re wrong; adding “izzle dizzle” to a word or phrase does not constitute coinage of a word…yet. But if you guessed Shakespeare, now you’re talking. Shakespeare’s innovative effect on English literature is enough to set him apart from the norm, but his eminent impact on the English language puts Shakespeare in a category high above any other (The Language of Shakespeare).
The Language of Shakespeare. 13 Aug 2006. Shakespeare Resource Center. 18 Sept. 20006. [http://www.bardweb.net/language.html].
Posted by: Amber B. at October 18, 2006 06:57 PM
Here are the two samples lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
Picture in your mind that everything material in your life was gone. Imagine there is no house, no car, no driveway, no computer, no cell phone, no traveling and no luxuries in life. Now imagine no food or water to drink or bathe in, and your next meal will be preceded by a long wait for a measly bowl of soup. You have no just stepped into the United States during the Great Depression. The effects it had are going to be felt in every person’s life, whether it be traveling, surviving or just keeping a roof over your head.
Harry Truman once said “It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job; it's a depression when you lose your own.” This is what every man, woman and family felt during the Great Depression. Life was only going to become harder every day.
Posted by: Heather H. at October 18, 2006 06:57 PM
Here are my two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
Only the strong survive. My high school soccer coach used to drill that into our heads during each practice and after every game. I was never quite sure what he meant by that. Surely he didn’t want a bunch of teenage girls pumped up on steroids and protein shakes. It wasn’t until I was introduced to the field of sport psychology that I truly understood what he meant. Being strong as an athlete not only meant being tough physically but mentally and emotionally as well.
Ever wonder why some athletes become enraged and violent during a game while others have a sense of ease and calmness about them? Many sport psychologists believe that it is the mental and emotional stability that keep these athletes composed and each individual can train him or her self to control their outbursts. Sport psychologists have come a long way since they field was first discovered and are continuing to progress in the study of the mind of athletes and those involved in physical activity.
Posted by: Angie F. at October 18, 2006 07:22 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I created after reading about lead-ins in the Ballenger text.
Nursing is a growing profession with advancement opportunities, but would you believe that by the year 2020, that the estimated nursing shortage will reach almost 800,000. This is the highest shortage yet and it is still growing. The shortage of nursing is growing even though the salary and hours are very decent. The factors that are contributing to this shortage may be due to the working conditions.
Imagine a hospital room, a bed; some fancy equipment and a small television set. What else comes to mind when you think of a hospital? Nurses are a very important aspect to the hospital setting. They not only assist the doctor in his orderly tasks, but they also provide emotional support and relief to the patient. Those cold, plain hospital rooms just wouldn’t be as welcoming unless a nurse was present to make you feel at home and comfortable in an unfamiliar setting.
Posted by: AlyshaG at October 18, 2006 07:33 PM
Hi Professor Hobbs,
My 2 leads currently may be weak, I just dont konw which direction I am taking my paper now that my views of my topic have changed.
Lead In Announcement/background
Everyday we put chemicals and foreign substances into our body that naturally would not be put in our bodies if our food was organic and natural. In today’s world its almost unavoidable so shouldn’t we know if they are safe or not. Well In this paper I am going to discuss a certain chemical that seams to be everywhere. Monosodium glutamate comes in liquid and solid forms and is controversial whether or not it is safe for human consumption.
Lead In – question
When you order your general Tso’s chicken or Big Mac do you know what you are ingesting? What chemicals make the cheap food taste so damn delicious? Do these foods make you feel generally not well? In this essay I will explain what chemical may be the answers to your questions.
Engl 202 sec 027
Posted by: Danny D. at October 18, 2006 08:01 PM
Here are my two lead-ins that I created after reading the Ballenger text.
Adam, a six year old boy is undergoing a psychiatric evaluation in the local hospital due to bulimia. Adams mother told the doctors how he recently was labeled with a hyperactive disorder and now takes a ant psychotic medicine called Ritalin. The doctors suddenly directed their focus to this aspect rather than the eating disorder. “It does not come as a shock that Adam has an eating disorder” explained the doctor. Ritalin has many side effects including weight gain and the development of an eating dsorder, to correct this problem the doctors put Adam through tests to determine if he was in fact correctly diagnosed with the disorder; to their surprise, Adam does not have hyperactivity at all, a simple food allergy is what caused the abnormal behavior.
As we reach the middle of the 21st century, more and more people are resorting to help in the use of prescription medication. With our society being accustomed to convenience and hassle free solutions, children are now managed to fit the expectations of obedience and intelligence.
Dawn Longenecker Sect. 023
Posted by: Dawn Longenecker at October 18, 2006 08:04 PM
Here are the two lead-ins I created:
With the establishment of the tobacco industry, Americans of all ages have developed a craving addiction, which is hard to overcome. Adults are not the only people smoking cigarettes, but there is a trend of children starting this habit in their early teens. Even with all of the bands against minors smoking the statistics have not declined. Its an alarming issue “ that smoking is slowly killing today’s youth.” So many preventable diseases have arisen since an endless supply of nicotine. So why are so many people still smoking?
My grandmother smoked her first cigarette when she was eleven years old. She has been smoking a pack per day for 62 years, and then she quit for two and half years. My grandmother became very ill and she was eventually hospitalized. The doctors diagnosed her with emphysema. Ever since then she has been in and out of the hospitals, and she has to use an oxygen tank to breathe. This is a typical story for someone with emphysema that most people won’t get until they are old. What most people don’t know is that “after 10 years of constant smoking emphysema can set in”.
Posted by: Nicole W. at October 18, 2006 08:14 PM
Professor Hobbs, here are two lead-ins I wrote using Ballenger's advice:
If you are a college student, you know about college textbooks and the dent they can make in your wallet. Are they to high? Are students being scammed? And who is making all the profit? These questions bring some nerves on edge when they hear the total for only one semester. Where will book prices go next? This essay will make a point to let the students know what they don’t know about college textbooks.
If you ask any college student where they think all their money they spent on textbooks is going, they would undoubtedly say the greedy bookstore. But shockingly, most of the profits go to the publisher. That may come as a surprise to some, but the people who you think are ripping you off really aren’t. The publishing business is a profitable one, because new additions come out and books are produced, they are the ones producing them and hauling in the money for it. They set the price.
Posted by: Carrie Berkey at October 18, 2006 08:21 PM
here are my two lead-ins
The Disgruntled retired politician sleeked in through the unlocked basement doors of the San Franciscan city hall. As he took another bite of the Twinkie he had, he loaded the first clip into his gun and stashed the other 9 rounds of ammunition somewhere on his person. He finished the Twinkie, concealed the gun, and made his way up to the mayor’s office. After some intense arguing, the mayor was shot by our assassin. In his attempt to flee, the murderer shot his opponent and foe in like, Harvey Milk, in a homophobic rage.
Harvey Milk was always the underdog. Not winning the first or the second time in his attempt at political office, He was a man of the people. He was grass roots politician, who worked for the people, not against them. In the end, his morals and his ideals were not enough to save him from such an inevitable fate brought on by hate and homophobia.
Posted by: Matt R at October 18, 2006 08:25 PM
Here are two lead-ins I created based on Ballenger's advice.
Have you ever been angry at a corrupt politician or maybe upset about the high prices at star bucks? Maybe then is it possible you are anti- establishment? You may be apart of the punk movement and not even know it.
When most people think of the punk movement they think skin heads, guys with mow hawks, dark outrageous clothing, plaid, and bad attitudes, but really it is all about politics. The movement isn't just about the loud rebellious youth; it is about standing up against what corporate America wants us to be and not just giving into want they think is a money hungry government.
Posted by: ace at October 18, 2006 08:54 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
"Anyway, no drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power." (O'Rourke) Society today views drug use as an epidemic. Drug use is a parasite that must be squashed as soon as possible. I guess in society's eyes I would be viewed as a "user," but drug use for me has never been negative. I believe that the effects drugs play on a person's life relies solely in how that person chooses to let the drug use affect them. That is why I feel that there are positive and negative effects of drug use.
I have always been fascinated by drugs. After my first time trying marijuana, I was convinced I would never do it again; it was so pointless to me. After the first time I got high I realized that drugs opened you up into an entire new world. I met a lot of interesting people with my social smoking, but by the time me senior year hit my best friend and I were smoking every night. It’s not that I needed pot; it was just what we did. We would drive around and get stoned, go to Eat and Park, hang out, socialize, then I would go home for the night. It was fun and I enjoyed doing it, I never saw it as a problem and quite frankly I still don’t.
Posted by: Britain.M at October 18, 2006 09:19 PM
Hello there Professor Hobbs,
Here are the two lead-ins that i did.
“Yesterday was the easiest day” is a saying that many of the new Navy SEAL recruits say during Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training. The hard training they endure even starts before the first day. They have to run 15-20 miles in the sand, push-ups upon push-ups, and the six men teams have to carry around 750 pound logs for hours. That is all on a daily basis. All the new recruits have to look forward to is “Hell Week”, and they will not see that for six or seven months. So when they make it through that day, they know it was easier than what they will do the next.
Who do you feel is the most trained to fight against terrorism and defend our country? There are so many different military groups that do many different tasks in our world today. The Navy SEALs seam to be the most trained and most deadly military force we have. They have to endure seven months of non stop physically and mentally demanding training, and even after all that they are still not a SEAL. It will take over a year to become part of the Special Force group called the SEALs. With all of that intense training, they just might be qualified enough to be called the best.
Posted by: Ashley C. at October 18, 2006 09:38 PM
Here are the two lead-ins that I am interested in using in my paper.
Question: If you were watching the news and there were no subtitles at the bottom of the screen, what would you think if you saw shots of land, just destroyed? What if the television showed land being washed away along with houses or flooded areas? What if you saw people in boats floating down a stream which was really a road underneath? What would you think happened and where in the world do you think it could have been? These are things that are effects of hurricanes and tsunamis. These two natural disasters both deal with water and shore lines, but that is only a small part of the destruction. They start from completely different aspects of science but end up sharing things in common, more than you would know.
Background: People lying on the ground or running around not knowing what to do in panic, water pouring down in rain drops with high winds blowing in every direction. Houses being broken into by water and wind washing away personal belongings down the sidewalks or what used to be sidewalks and roads. These are the actions of people and things that are stuck in the situations and aftermath of a hurricane or a tsunami. Emotions will play a huge part in these natural disasters, but mostly because people want to know why they did not have a warning or if there were more things that could have been done.
ENGL 202 023
October 18, 2006
Posted by: Valerie W. at October 18, 2006 10:41 PM
Here are my two lead-ins.
The first is a scene:
Imagine you wake up one morning as an eight year old child living in Sub-Saharan Africa, you look around and you are surrounded by dozens of other children your age living in a rundown orphanage. Your fathers and mothers are either in hospitals or dead due to the AIDS epidemic which has infected nearly twenty-five percent of Africa.
The second is a question:
Can you imagine if one in four people in your country was going to die within the next fifteen years? This is additional to the people who are already dying of due to other health complications. If you would put that percent into the United States that equates to nearly 75 million people being infected with the HIV virus. These statistics are easy to avoid since this problem isn't nearly as prevalent in our nation.
Posted by: Adam V. at October 18, 2006 10:42 PM
The following are two lead-ins I constructed based on Ballenger’s advice:
1. Background/Profile Lead-in (In class)
I can’t remember how many times I’ve heard an old timer break out one of those “Back in my day…” lines. It seems that each and every time I hear one, I know what is going to come out of their mouths, and it is normally a bunch of hot air. Sometimes it seems like elderly people, especially men, have lost their minds. However, if he were still alive, one very prominent man in athletic history could have made this statement: “Back in my day, we never had illegal performance enhancing drugs.” That very prominent figure is Babe Ruth. Although this statement follows the old burn out dictum previously stated, it actually holds water. The fact is that performance-enhancing drugs have become a problem in both the major leagues and high school baseball, among other sports. It seems like using performance-enhancing drugs illegally has become more of a game than baseball itself. Do present day athletes find using an illegal drugs a rush or are they at it for purely competitive purposes? The good guys (Major League Baseball officials) have been trying to outmuscle the convicted athletes out of baseball by means of suspensions and fines. Unfortunately for baseball and its younger fan base, the media has been covering the topic of steroid abuse in Major League Baseball like gum to the bottom of a shoe; you can’t help the negative publicity, and it’s upsetting to see what’s happening. The use of steroids by professional athletes has mentally affected high school athletes by demonstration of immorality and cheating and has forever scarred baseball.
2. Dialogue Lead-in (Homework)
It’s preseason before the season starts, and all the guys are in the locker room after the game. Northern teams escape the grip of the cold and unforgiving ending winter months to the palm trees of Florida at spring training. After a spring game, a conversation between two players could have gone something like this: “Wow Rafael, you really put on some muscle mass in the off-season,” claims one player. “Yeah, I really hit the weights hard since the end of last season,” Rafael responds. As realistic as this simple conversation could have been, Rafael Palmeiro had been convicted of using illegal performance-enhancing drugs in the form of steroids during the 2005 regular season for ten days (Palmeiro). Along with other major league athletes, heroes for many young children, professional baseball players’ names have been dropping in the media like the bombs over Iraq for illegal drug abuse, mostly in the form of steroids. Since the media portrays information to all groups, ages, and backgrounds of people all across the world, young athletes are not censored from all the negative hype in baseball. Although many high school athletes know that steroids are illegal, the use of them in the present day has mentally affected many high school athletes into thinking that steroids are an acceptable way to get an edge over competition because they see that professional athletes are doing it.
"Palmeiro Docked 10 Days for Steroids." Associated Press 2 Aug. 2005. 18 Oct. 2006
Posted by: Rich L. at October 18, 2006 11:04 PM
Here are my two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger’s advice.
My first lead-in I used was anecdote/question.
Every day both you and I eat food and throw it away, which after time I know becomes a continuous, vicious unnoticed cycle. One day I decided to eat a banana, peel it and eat it, sometimes even cut up in my cereal, like I did one morning and hats when the thought came to mind, “Once I throw this peel away I don’t - along with most of my peers – know REALLY what to think of what really happens to it, where it goes. Now I’ll investigate it, look at the interior and exterior of what REALLY happens to our garbage, where and why does it go where it goes and are landfills really all that safe?
My second lead-in I used was quotation.
“The per-captia figure for waste produced has topped four pounds per person per day…the amount is increasing at roughly 5% annually.” With the enormous amount of waste growing so rapidly we need to make sure that landfills are safely being built for us, for our world. This is what makes the importance level raise and more people need to recognize it now, by exploring this with the thought of old landfills versus new landfills and the new technology to make things more efficient and healthier for the people in the future.
Posted by: Ashley O. at October 18, 2006 11:04 PM
18 October 2006
Here are two different types of lead-ins for my essay. My first lead-in is a scene.
After miles of endless road the car finally stops and idles. The traffic light burns red as the color of the surrounding raindrops are saturated with its glow. The highway seemed so long and endless, through the trees and over miles of grassy waves. Now it all comes to this. Out the mirror there's a sea of neon lights all flashing messages: BUY, CONSUME, EAT, ACCESSORIZE. There's a strip mall to the right and a Wal-Mart to the left and an army of franchised buildings guarding the way. It seems everything I could ever want lies in one of those buildings. The rain beats down harder and the lights seem to glow into a cloud of corporate bliss. I escape from the reality of the ordinary traffic light and find myself in a wonderful land full of self indulgence and orgasmic merchandise opening. The smell of the seal breaking on my new computer and the glow of the drop lighting tingle my senses. I don't know what I want, but I want it. I WANT IT NOW! The next thing I know the automatic doors are sliding open for me in front of Wal-Mart like the gates of Heaven its self. I leave with only the un-biodegradable bag of heaven that I could afford and hit the road again. On my way back I passed Joe's cafe. He had no traffic light. I didn't stop. I didn't look.
My second lead in is a quote.
“On the way to God don’t know
My brain’s the burger and my heart’s the coal
I’m trying to get my head clear
I push things out through my mouth; I get refilled through my ears
I’m on my way to God don’t know or even care
My brain’s the weak heart, and my heart’s the long stairs.”
It’s a system; the human mind. A system we are all apart of. It’s a system that can be controlled where thoughts and opinions come from the top down. Everyone is on their own, free to make their own decisions and congregate their own thoughts. America is a system; wired closer and closer together, ever drawing further and further apart. A system where the single goal is: Money. Our whole culture is so set on this vision that we are forgetting what is truly important. The thing that life is all about: Each other. What are we really headed for? What is progress? What does the word future imply? Our brain is telling us to consume and our heart keeps telling us it’s wrong until as a generation and as a nation we all loose ourselves in the quite emptiness of a crowded street.
Posted by: Sam H. at October 18, 2006 11:07 PM
Hi Professor Hobbs
Here are my two sample lead-ins I created:
Have you ever taken much time to think of all the ways our working world around us is mislead and misinformed? Mali, Africa has a seriously critical nutrition crisis which has been occurring for an innumerable amount of years. Everyone has their personal perception of the world outside their own. Majority of us as Americans do not worry of the countries that surround us. That could all be easily changed if we realized, faced the fact, that it is our fault.
Weekly, as I sit on the couch in front of my television eating the pizza which I had delivered, bought by the money I was given to me by my father I had a small epiphany. What if? Just what if I did not have what I do, the luxuries of the world that I grew up in, I never second guessed being spoiled and not feeling spoiled enough. I could never imagine eating the same grains and drinking infected dirty water for every meal. Living in a life where my family’s inability to provide the resources necessary, that help excel my growth, development and keep me in good health is unimaginable. Mali, Africa deals with malnutrition, the unhealthy resources and the inability to grow strong every minute of every day. Now is the time to get more educated and involved.
Posted by: Jennifer T. at October 18, 2006 11:33 PM
Professor Hobbs, I was absent last class, but I wrote two leads at home.
"It is mostly a strong global demand growth story with India and China starting to add a lot of Global demands as USA has continued its pattern of escalating usage. In terms of OPEC limiting supply to keep prices up, the supply restrictions that have recently happened are more Iraq related, more than OPEC pulling supply off of the markets."
-From interview with Dr. Yerger
Since gas prices are too high, we just need to produce more ethanol-fueled cars to fix the problem, right? Wrong. It would literally impossible to create enough corn in order to support this move to enthanol-fueled cars. Even if we could produce enough corn, what would we feed the animals in the agricultural industry? There are ways other than oil and ethanol to fuel automobiles.
Posted by: Chris D at October 18, 2006 11:40 PM
Here are the two sample lead-ins that I have created based on Ballenger’s advice:
What is Victoria’s Secret’s secret to becoming the leading retail marketer of women’s lingerie? Victoria’s Secret operates four main divisions, Victoria’s Secret’s Stores, Victoria’s Secret’s Catalogues, Victoria’s Secret’s Beauty Products and Victoria’s Secret Online. Victoria’s Secret is well known for its appealing yet controversial advertising campaigns such as the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and the use of celebrity models.
Walking through the mall the sent of “Heavenly” perfume fills the air, you look up at the sign hanging above the store entrance and you see written in pink Victoria’s Secret Store. The store windows are filled with sexy lingerie, it’s everything a girl could ask for and everything a guy fantasizes about. The mailman rings the doorbell with a catalogue that’s filled with beautiful women and clothing that varies from lingerie to winter jackets. The label across the front of the catalogue reads Victoria’s Secret’s Catalogue. You pass your roommate in the computer lab and glance at the webpage she is searching; you see that she is shopping for PINK loungewear. The website she is using is www.victoriassecret.com. You sit down to watch television after dinner and when you turn the station you see celebrity models strutting down the runway in skimpy lingerie wearing Victoria’s Secret’s signature angel wings. When you check the TV listing it reads Victoria’s Secret’s Fashion Show. These instances may be proof of Victoria’s Secret’s success and popularity.
Posted by: Bethany Peck at October 18, 2006 11:48 PM
These are the two lead-ins I created.
I stand back looking at his body, his lifeless body. I hear people around me crying, and attempting the typical funeral talk, but I am else where. I am screaming inside, to the point I am almost swelling with anger. In this casket is a twenty-seven year-old son, father, friend, cousin, brother...who is being buried because of an overdose of heroin.
Looking around, everyday now, it makes me sick to know how many families are struggling with heroin addiction. My small town has been invaded, and Sam’s* story is just one of so many. His one year-old son will never know his father, and his family will always be dealing with the mental and emotional toll that a heroin addiction creates for these families.
*Name changed out of respect for family, and the deceased.
About eight hours later it hits starts. You are (what is commonly called) “jonesing” for another fix. Forty-eight hours later and you are agitated, you can not sleep, and it feels as if hundreds and hundreds of bugs are biting you. You can not stop scratching at scabs already torn away. Cold sweats, vomiting, and diarrhea only make it worse. Your body is shaking, all you muscles, joints, and even bones ache. The faces of your concerned family check-in on occasions, but the only thing on your mind is where they have hidden their valuables and when they will be leaving; your mother weeps because her baby is in pain, taking everything from anyone just to numb yourself and slowly kill yourself. This is the first time you have been home in months, and you are suffering from withdrawal. You know it hurts you, and drives you crazy, but what is it doing to the family that has loved you and been hurt by you time and again just to feed your addiction?
Posted by: Amber K. at October 18, 2006 11:58 PM
Here is my lead in I wrote in class. It is an anecdote. It is of considerable length because I have decided to use this as the beginning of what will eventually become my rough draft.
I had never been to Columbus. Before, at least in my mind, it was such a small, obscure, city. Would this convention I was attending downtown going to be that great? These were some of the thoughts shuffling through my head as I restlessly tried to sleep on the floor of a room at the Columbus Quality Inn, nestled in between the ironing board and the sink, with 15 of my fellow IUP Percussion Majors scattered around the room around me. I was beginning to question whether or not skipping 3 days of class to make this trip was the right call. The next morning as I sleepily ate a stale muffin in the hotel lobby, a man noticed my percussion-related attire. "Wanna share a cab to the convention center?" he asked, "I just drove in from Nebraska and don't feel like spending another second behind the wheel." I already had my ride lined up, but this quick little chance encounter lead me to think to myself, "who comes, let alone drives from Nebraska just to come to this convention?" I had never heard much about it until I started college, and thought of it as a bunch of drummers getting together and going to boring lectures all day. When I finally reached the convention center later that morning, I realized that the convention was worth every hardship I had encountered getting there. PASIC is a percussionist's fantasy. Every major performer, merchant, manufacturer, teacher, and ensemble is represented in some way at PASIC. A percussionist (as I did last year) could easily spend over $500 in the vendor's exhibit hall just on drumsticks and mallets in a single morning, and could very easily attend concerts non-stop from 8am to 8pm without a single break. Every form of percussion from the latest innovations in heavy metal to ancient techniques of the traditional Indian Tabla can be found somewhere in the convention hall for the four day percussion gala. Basically, everything (in every sense of the word) important about what we do comes together for PASIC. Despite its popularity in our eyes, like most instrumental music conventions, it is quite esoteric by nature. The only individuals interested in this convention are those involved with percussion in some way. Although the convention is very diverse, percussion enthusiasts are a small demographic. Despite this, however, PASIC has 'big convention success'. The Percussive Arts Society, the organization which sponsors PASIC is as financially stable as any organization or convention around, the extensive management system allows for absolute maximum efficiency and control of all PASIC activities, and, most importantly, the quality of the product is phenomenal. This begs the question, why PASIC? What about PASIC is so attractive to percussionists? Why is it so successful year after year for the last 30 years?
Here is the second lead in that I wrote. I used a question as my method.
If you could create a place in this world where you experienced total, complete bliss for an extended period of time, what would that place be? What would it look like? For percussionists, this place would be PASIC: The Percussive Arts Society International Convention. For percussionists, PASIC is the premiere percussion event of the year. The percussive calendar begins and ends with PASIC. But why is PASIC so successful? What about this convention makes percussionists come back in driving force year after year?
Posted by: Vince W. at October 19, 2006 12:41 AM
Here are my two sample lead-ins
College students across the nation have all heard about the freshman fifteen, a myth that incoming college students gain fifteen pounds in their first year of college. However, recent studies have proven this ever so popular myth may not be that far off track. In a 2005 study conducted of college freshman determined an average weight gain of seven pounds. While seven pounds may seem minimal, at this rate of gain college students are on course to put on twenty-seven pounds by graduation.
How does exercise and proper nutrition affect your mental and physical health? This is a big question that could help solve the increasing problem of unhealthy Americans. What exactly does nutrition and exercise do for your body?
Bryan M. 023
Posted by: Bryan M at October 19, 2006 01:53 AM
My two lead-ins are background and quotation.
As long as you haven’t seen the latest Captain Morgan commercial, you probably haven’t heard anybody say, “Arrrgghh Matey or Yo, Ho, Ho and a bottle of rum!” Well, back in the 19th century, it was the common slang for most pirates. Still, such words are associated with pirates. Even now, one can picture a pirate with a peg leg, a black eye patch, and a parrot on his shoulder saying, “Polly want a cracker,” but have you ever thought of a woman pirate? Probably not. Why does it seem that you never hear of women sailing the high seas and live the life of a pirate? Were there even any female pirates?
“It is a rule amongst the Pirates, not to allow Women to be on board their Ships, when in the Harbour. And if they should Take a Prize at Sea, that has any Women on board, no one dares, on pain of death, to force them against their Inclinations.” (Redicker). What is that supposed to mean! Are we still stuck in the 19th century? Luckily, a lot has changed since the era of eye patches and peg legs and swashbuckling.
Posted by: Brittany m. at October 19, 2006 02:14 AM
Here are the two sample lead-ins I created based on Ballenger's advice.
This is an announcement lead-in.
There is a health problem that has been causing uproar lately in the U.S. What could this catastrophe be? Well, it is a “medical condition characterized by storage of excess body fat” (Encarta 1). You guessed it. This problem is obesity and it has been spreading rapidly in our country. You would think by the sound of it that this was some sort of disease. Actually obesity can cause diseases (Encarta 1). This is one reason why I believe it is necessary to prevent childhood obesity because it can create numerous complications such as Type Two Diabetes mellitus and heart disease (Encarta 1). Since most kids go to school, I believe that elementary to high schools are the best places to start in preventing and curing childhood obesity. Cities all around the country have taken notice and I would hope that all of them have taken action. The Pittsburgh area is a great example of what schools have done to try to prevent or reduce obesity in children. But first, how do children get obese? What are ways to stop it? How far has Pittsburgh gone in their struggle against obesity?
This is a question lead-in.
How badly is obesity a problem with children today? What causes it? What can we do to fight it? How far have schools gone in preventing or curing this condition? Are schools the best start in doing this? These were the questions that rustled in my mind when I thought of my research topic. As my research continued, I grew more and more eager to answer these questions. After hours of research, I came to a conclusion. Since most kids go to school, I believe that elementary to high schools are the best places to start in preventing and curing childhood obesity. Right now schools are taking action against this epidemic. What better example then the area I grew up in, Pittsburgh. Now whether or not you agree with my thesis statement is something you can decide when reading this paper.
Posted by: Brian B. at October 19, 2006 02:25 AM
Here are my two lead-ins
Joan Hutzel, an immigrant from England has had many struggles with becoming a US citizen and she doesn’t believe that the US government is being strict enough with the laws on illegal immigration. When she came over in 1948, Joan had to go to the Johnstown police station to get finger printed and fill out paper work. Then she had to wait several years until she even had a chance of getting her citizenship. If Joan and others had to go through such a difficult time to become a citizen. Why shouldn’t illegal immigrants also have to go through the US government’s process?
The US Border Patrol had captured an immense number of illegal immigrants but only a minuscule amount of people were actually sent back to their own country. If our country is looking to solve the problem on illegal immigration, the government has to become stricter with enforcing the laws. The border patrol has to become more effective than a 25-30% success rate. For instance, what universities would allow students to continue getting low percentage grades like this? Not too many. So shouldn’t are government also be achieving higher expectations.
Posted by: Jake M at October 19, 2006 02:38 AM
Here are two lead-ins that could possibly used for my research paper.
So you’ve just purchased that new Breaking Benjamin’s CD. You run home, anxious to put it on your iPod. You throw the CD into your computer, only to be shot down and bombarded by ugly error messages which inhibit you from doing anything with the new CD you just bought. Outraged? I would be as well. In my hunt to use this CD, you begin searching the Internet for ways to get around this “roadblock”. Welcome to the world of Digital Rights Management (DRM), where legally purchased is just a phrase that holds no meaning. Where do you draw the line?
Digital Rights Management has been in the works for many years. It’s not always in the form of copyright encryption which disables copying. Years ago, there weren’t universal standards. Sony and other companies alike, developed music players that would only play items that were specifically coded for/by Sony. There was no cross-platform standardization. Imagine buying a new CD that is only playable on one brand of CD players. Seems ridiculous doesn’t it?
Posted by: Matt K at October 19, 2006 07:44 AM
Question and Anecdote-Do children who grow up with gay parent turn up gay? No! I had heterosexual parents and my sisters are "straight" and I am gay. The love was there for all of use, and they were straight, but my sexual preference was different from the start. My parents sexuality had nothing to do with my sexuality, but I am gay.
Statement-Parenthood should be objective instead of subjective. Every objective of parents are to make sure their child(ren) are satisfied, happy and safe. But gay parents cannot perform there tasks because of their sexuality. What is the difference if the love is there?
Posted by: Nathan Perry at October 19, 2006 09:22 AM
17 October 2006
“According to the USDA’s Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals, 1994-96, only about half of children five years and younger — 56 percent of boys and 46 percent of girls six to 11 years — get enough calcium. Additionally, children ages six to 12 eat only half the recommended five daily servings of fruits and vegetables” (Dannon 1). This disturbing information often explains childhood obesity. The children are deprived of this nutritional intake because of the overwhelming intake of “happy meals”, the increase of technology causing sedentary behavior, and the child’s socio-economic status.
"Childhood Overweight-a Public Health Issue." Dannon Institute. 1998. Community Nutrionary. 19 Oct. 2006 .
“Obesity now contributes to the death of more than 360,000 Americans a year. The incidence of childhood obesity is now at epidemic levels. Alarm bells are going off all over the place.” (Tom Harkins). This quote and fact explains the serious health issue of obesity, but most importantly, childhood obesity. It is stating that we, the U.S., need to take action and do things to keep this epidemic from becoming out of control. We could do this by limiting the causes of childhood obesity, such as; healthier meals, more physical activity, and making those with a lower socio-economic status accessible to healthier choices.
"Tom Harkin Quotes." Brainy Quotes. 2006. 19 Oct. 2006 .
Posted by: Miki B. at October 19, 2006 10:49 AM
I'm still doing research on the subject of my profile, (which I'm going to do over fall break), but it's going to be something like this...I'm focusing my paper on the disease of plastic surgery, when a person is obsessed with getting mulitple surgies and cannot stop themselves from getting it. But I'm planning on starting my paper by introducing a woman with the disease by just discribing what she looks like...and so on, and so on.
I think that I am going to definitely use quotation if I don't use profile because a quotation at the beginning of a paper has always grabbed my attention. I can't decide which one yet, but the quote is definitely going to be from my interview. I interviewed my friend Jessie, who has recently had plastic surgery, and I feel that I would get the interesting unbiased quote from her.
Posted by: Jackie DePietro at October 19, 2006 10:57 AM
Here are my two lead ins.
Imagine yourself sitting home alone, when you start to get overwhelming thoughts and feelings. The overwhelming thoughts and feelings will not go away. They become stronger and stronger until you feel as if you’re going to burst. Finally you can not take it any more you have to do something for this to go away. So you go to the kitchen you find the biggest and sharpest knife you can find and you cut yourself. You have instant relief. You clean the cut and then go to bed. This is exactly what happened to one of Dr. Levenkron patients. He tells the story in his book Cutting Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation. In this paper I will be taking a deeper look at why someone would want to harm themselves and who is this affecting.
Have you ever had feelings that you felt would not go away unless you did something about them? So you pick up a sharp object and cut yourself. Well this is what a self-cutter will do. They feel as if they can not control there emotions so they take control by cutting. In this paper I will be look at why someone would want to cut themselves and who is affecting.
Levenkron, Steven. Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation. New York: W. W. Norton and Company, 1998.
Posted by: Michelle W at October 19, 2006 11:22 AM
I liked the instructions for essay . thank u
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Posted by: John Williams at August 20, 2008 11:20 AM
interesting, i'll be back later
Posted by: Jorbidok at November 1, 2008 05:53 PM
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