Research Papers - Drafting

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Research Papers, Day Seven: Drafting, beginning to write, bringing it all together, and sample text about salt mining.


  • 1. Research Papers Drafting
  • 2. Writing a First Draft Now that your research is done and youve made a good plan in your outline, its time to begin actually putting words to paper. Dont worry about making everything perfect this first time aroundthats why they call it a draft. Just get all of your ideas down in a way that makes sense.
  • 3. Keys to Effective Drafting
  • 4. Keys to Effective Drafting1. Write with your purpose, form and audience in mind. Ask yourself these questions as you write: a) What do I want my readers to learn from my report? b) How will I organize my writing to make it easy to understand?2. Use your first paragraph to introduce your topic, get your readers attention, and present your thesis statement.3. In the next few paragraphs, tell about what is important for your topic.4. Remember to cite your sources in your paper and list those sources alphabetically on a works cited page (more details later).
  • 5. Citing Sources Within the Paper When you have all the information: The most common citation lists the authors last name and the page number in parentheses: Marco Polo discovered that Tibetans used salt cakes stamped with the imperial seal of the great Kublai Khan as money (Kemper 70). If you already named the author in your sentence, or if youre quoting from the same item for a second time within the same paragraph, just include the page number in parentheses. Steve Kemper explains that during the Civil War, the North sent troops to attack the Souths salt producers in order to make the South weaker (71).
  • 6. Citing Sources Within the Paper When you DO NOT have all the information: Some sources do not list an author. In those cases use the title (or a shortened version of it) and the page number: At first, the salt was used mainly for storing meat and fish and for making ice cream (Detroit 167). Some sources, especially websites, do not use page numbers. In those cases, just list the author: The seven-foot-tall tires for the dump trucks had to be compressed and bound with straps to fit down the shaft (Zacharias). IF a source does not list the author or page number, use the title. Early settlers would collect that liquid and boil away the water to get the salt (Dry).
  • 7. 5-Paragraph Essay Form Say what youre going to say, say it, then say that you said it.1. Opening Paragraph a) Remember the funnel! b) End with your thesis statement.2. First Body Paragraph (first point about topic)3. Second Body Paragraph (second point about topic)4. Third Body Paragraph (third point about topic)5. Conclusion Paragraph a) Reverse the funnel. b) Start by restating your thesis.
  • 8. Opening Paragraph Approaches Start with an interesting fact with broad appeal. Twelve hundred feet below the ground, an enormous mine has been operating almost nonstop for more than a century. Ask an interesting question. How many people know that there are cars and trucks driving on roads more than 1,200 feet below the city of Detroit? Start with a quotation. The only dirty part of this job is getting to work, says salt miner Joel Payton.
  • 9. Opening Paragraph Example Twelve hundred feet below the ground, an enormous minehas been operating almost nonstop for more than a century. Ahundred miles of tunnels connect its huge chambers. It hasunderground roads for cars, trucks, and mining machines. Thismine produces hundreds of tons of rock every day.However, the rock from this mine is not gold, or iron ore, oreven coal; it is salt. This enormous, hundred-year-old salt minelies beneath the city of Detroit, Michigan.
  • 10. Developing the Middle Part The middle part of your paper should start by stating why your topic is important. Each paragraph should focus on one aspect of your topic. Each paragraph should begin with a topic sentence covering one main point about your overall topic. This sentence is sort of a mini- thesis sentence for just this paragraph. Use your outline to help you keep your focus.
  • 11. First Body Paragraph Example Salt is more important than most people realize. Wars have beenfought over it. In ancient China, salt coins were used for money, andRoman soldiers were often paid in salt, which is where the wordsalary comes from. Bettina Werner, an artist known as the SaltQueen says, Salt is like a fifth element, its so important to life(Lin). In the human body, salt carries electrical signals that keep aperson alive. To stay healthy, a person needs to eat about threepounds of salt a year (Modern). Salt is also used to preserve meatand fish, to tan leather, to soften water, and to make many differentchemicals. However, most of the salt from the Detroit mine is nowused to melt ice and snow on streets and highways (Zacharias).
  • 12. Second Body Paragraph Example Scientists say that the Detroit mine digs into a bed of salt that isseveral hundred million years old. From 600 million to 230 millionyears ago, seawater flooded the middle of North America manytimes. As sun and wind evaporated the water, sea salt was depositedon the submerged land. According to the Salt Institute, Trillions oftons of salt, collected in a layer 400 to 1,600 feet thick, reached fromwestern Michigan all the way to New York . . . . Eventually, it wascovered by silt that became rock more than 1,000 feet thick (Dry).Later, when people came to the area to settle, they found springs ofsalty water bubbling from the ground. They would collect that liquidand boil away the water to get the salt.
  • 13. Third Body Paragraph Example In 1896, the Detroit salt mine was started in order to dig the salt out ofthe ground. It began as a shaft 1,200 feet deep and about six feet wide. Atfirst, the salt was used mainly for storing meat and fish and for making icecream (Detroit 167). In 1940, though, Detroit became the first city to userock salt on icy roads. Other cities soon followed Detroits example, and themine began selling most of its salt to road crews (Dry). In 1983, however,low sales and competition from Canadian mines caused the Detroit mine toclose. Crystal Mines bought the mine, hoping to store hazardous wastesthere. In 1985, while waiting for a permit, they ran public tours of the mine.Crystal Mines permit was declined in 1997 and [they] then sold the mine tothe Detroit Salt Company, explained Kim Roberts, manager of the mine(Roberts). The mine was reopened, and it again become one of the mainsources of road salt in the United States.
  • 14. This Example Continues . . . This example paper continues beyond what I ask for in your assignment. I ask only that you write three body paragraphs. This sample paper was divided into history of the mine, the mine today, and the mines future. I will share the rest of the example paper so that you have further examples of well-written paragraphs, and you can see how the conclusion fits into the whole.
  • 15. Fourth Body Paragraph Example Some people call the Detroit salt mine a city beneath a city.It covers 1,400 acres under Detroit and its suburbs. Thatsequal to 1,300 football fields. Also, it has more than 50 milesof roads where construction equipment, trucks, and cars drive.To get these vehicles down the shaft, they had to be taken apart,carried down in pieces, and reassembled in undergroundworkshops. The seven-foot-tall tires for the dump trucks hadto be compressed and bound with straps to fit down the shaft(Zacharias).
  • 16. Fifth Body Paragraph Example The mining equipment includes many different types of bigelectric trucks. One type has a giant chain saw on the front, whichcuts a deep groove into a salt wall at floor level. Then a drilling-machine truck bores a pattern of holes 20 feet deep into the wall tohold dynamite or other explosives. The blast from these explosivesbreaks hundreds of tons of rock from the wall in huge chunks.Trucks with giant shovels then scoop up tons at a time and trop theminto dump trucks. The dump trucks carry the chunks back to theshaft, where a crusher breaks them into smaller pieces and sortingmachines separate the pieces by size. Finally, buckets that can holdnine tons of salt run up a conveyor to the surface. There the salt ispackaged and shipped (Dry).
  • 17. Sixth Body Paragraph Example The Salt Institute explains that the mine is carved out in aroom-and-pillar method. Each room is as big and high as aschool gymnasium. Between rooms, the miners leave pillars ofsalt about 60 feet wide to hold up the ceiling. This type ofmining gets about 70 percent of the salt from the ground,leaving the other 30 percent as support pillars. Because the saltbed has never had an earthquake or other shock, it lies very flat,so the pattern of rooms and pillars stretches level from one endof the mine to the other. According to the Salt Institute, thismine has never experienced a collapse or mine fatality(Dry).
  • 18. Seventh Body Paragraph Example Miners say that the mine is a very clean and healthy place towork. The temperature stays a cool 58 degrees year-round.There are no bugs, rats, or other animals living in the mine,because there is nothing for them to eat (Zacharias). I loveworking here. The air you breathe in the mine feels great. Itsvery clean, with no allergens or mold like on the surface. Iveworked here for 15 years, and I wouldnt want to be anywhereelse, shared Mike Yeling, a miner (Yeling).
  • 19. Conclusion Paragraph Your final paragraph should sum up your report and bring it to a thoughtful close. State any conclusions you have drawn and the reasons for them. Other possible endings include: Remind the reader of the overall main idea (your thesis sentence). Provide information about the future of your topic. Make a final observation for the reader.
  • 20. Conclusion Paragraph Example The Detroit salt mine could have a very interesting future.According to geologists, there is enough salt to last for 70million years (Dry). Many people worry, though, that therunoff from road salt is having a negative effect on our riversand lakes. If people stop using salt on icy streets and highways,there may not be enough business to keep the Detroit mineopen. In that case, the mine could be used to store importantdocuments, films, and artwork, as some other salt mines do(Tanner). If nothing else, the Detroit salt mine could be turnedinto a public museum because it is an important part of thecitys history.
  • 21. Dont Forget the Homework Write your opening paragraph, complete with thesis statement. Create an outline to give me the direction of where you are going on the paper. Due on Friday, January 25th, 2013 at the beginning of class. Worth 100 points. Do not earn a zero!


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