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Part 1:

For the following paragraphs (I-VI), identify the topic sentence (TS) and supporting sentences (SS).

Read each passage (I-VI) and, based on the subject of the chosen sentence, label what you think is a topic sentence or a supporting sentence of the paragraph.

Remember: There will be three questions for every passage. That means one topic sentence and two supporting sentences for each paragraph. Sometimes the supporting sentence (SS) will be given to you before the topic sentence (TS). Be sure to pay close attention to the paragraph’s main idea in order to know how it develops.

Paragraph I

Surprising, many soldiers during the Civil War died of Disease just as much as gun wounds.  In the federal and Confederate armies, soldiers were known to catch malaria and other fatal diseases. Changes in weather or even exposure to different environments are causes as to why soldiers in the Civil war would catch a disease.  In the early period, almost one out of every four soldiers fell sick to fatal illnesses.

1. The sentence: Surprising, many soldiers during the Civil War died of disease just as much as gun wounds.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

2. The sentence: Changes in weather or even exposure to different environments are causes as to why soldiers in the Civil war would catch diseases.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

3. The sentence: In the early period, almost one out of every four soldiers fell sick to fatal illnesses.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Paragraph II

Bill, Ted and I were out one night at the bar. Ted and Bill got into a heated debate about politics.  So, it happened about a year ago. I tried reaching a common ground with them both about Bush’s leadership. Ted was mad about Bill’s stance on the war in Iraq and decided to speak his mind. After a while people were sick of hearing us argue, so we were asked to leave.

4. The sentence: Ted was mad about Bill’s stance on the war in Iraq and decided to speak his mind.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

5. The sentence: So, it happened about a year ago.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

6. The sentence: I tried reaching a common ground with them both on the subject of Bush’s leadership.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Paragraph III

Many teenagers, ages 14-19, hang out at malls all over the United States. Teens normally go to the mall to meet with their friends, shop and see a movie. Most malls in the U.S. are full of teenagers on Friday night, all day Saturday and in the afternoon on Sunday. These three days make up most of the teenage population inside malls. Due to the absence of school, malls are the typical, teenage hangout spots.

7. The sentence: Most malls in the U.S. are full of teenagers on Friday night, all day Saturday and in the afternoon on Sunday.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

8. The sentence: Many teenagers ages 14-19, hang out at malls all over the United States.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

9. The sentence: Malls are the typical teenage hangout spots.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Paragraph IV

The success rate for long-term relationships from the help of these sites are slightly high. Sites like eharmony.com and matchmaker.com, match singles together based on common interest. Many times, on-line dating services match people according to their horoscope, age, career, weight, height, and extra-curricular activities. Most singles in the U.S. agree that on-line dating is a great way to meet people. The on-line dating scene has become very popular among singles in the U.S.

10. The sentence: The on-line dating scene has become very popular among singles in the U.S.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

11. The sentence: Many times on-line dating services match people according to their horoscope, age, career, weight, height, and extra-curricular activities.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

12. The sentence: Most singles in the U.S. agree that on-line dating is a great way to meet people.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Paragraph V

All day long, they’re faced with danger. As a police officer, a person must stay in shape due to the physical drain of the career. For those who are on active duty walking the streets, their jobs are the most difficult due to the dangers they face. The life of a police officer is hard work. Cops working the streets deal with criminals face to face, and most of the time, confrontations are not pleasant. Any situation the police officer faces, he must type a report to his superior explaining what has happened. 

13. The sentence: Cops working the streets deal with criminals face to face, and most of the time the confrontations are not pleasant.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

14. The sentence: As a police officer a person must stay in shape due to the physical drain of the career.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

15. The sentence: The life of a police officer is hard work.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Paragraph VI

T.V. family shows are being replaced by reality-based T.V. series. Reality shows like Survivor, Big Brother, American Idol, and The Bachelor have drawn a new audience different from past family shows like the Cosbys, Different Strokes, Full House etc. Today’s reality T.V. audience is fascinated with real-life situations unlike those portrayed in family shows. The difference in the depiction of American life in both genres, lies in the idea of the script. Family shows use actors that portray a role written and created by a person. In reality T.V. the situation has already been set up, so that real people with no acting experience can act like they normally would.

16. The sentence: Today’s reality T.V. audience is fascinated with real-life situations unlike those portrayed in family shows.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

17. The sentence: T.V. family shows are being replaced by reality-based T.V. series.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

18. The sentence: The difference in the depiction of American life in both genres, lies in the idea of the script.

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

19. The sentence: Family shows use actors that portray a role written and created by a person. 

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

20. The sentence: In reality T.V. the situation has already been set up, so that real people with no acting experience can act like they normally would. 

A. Is the topic sentence

B. Is a supporting sentence

Part 2

Write one paragraph for each for the following 8 topics below. (Remember a paragraph consists of at least 5-7 sentences. Then pick 2 of your 8 paragraphs and incorporate them into an essay.        

  1. Why is obtaining a high school diploma important?
  2. The difference between colleges and vocational schools?
  3. Colonizing Mars is a dangerous task.
  4. Cosmic rays are filled with high-intensity radiation.
  5. Why do you like or dislike math?
  6. How do we use algebra in everyday life?
  7. Social media is leading the way in advertising.
  8. How are phones a great tool for marketing?

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