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Personal Narrative

(Self) (Story)

A good writer can write about things that happen in his/her own life because they know those stories BEST!

Purpose:

Why write personal narratives?

To tell something that happened to you and your feelings about it


Were you somehow different at the end of your experience? If so, how exactly did you change? Did you learn something new about yourself? What?

Did you learn something new about other people, human nature, or life in general? What was it?
Theme!

Who is your audience?


Audience:
Ms. Loneman
Classmates *No matter who reads your story, you have to work on vivid descriptions to appeal to your audience.

Tone:
Your voice needs to come throughas though you are having a conversation with the reader. The story is informal and in first person.

Personal Narratives
NON fiction A small experience of the authors life (Snapshot)

Use the word I to tell your REAL story

A full day at Adventureland An hour at the park with your best friend Opening gifts on your birthday Flying to Florida to visit grandparents

Lets decide what is considered ONE idea.

Great Personal Narratives


Focuses on ONE main idea Has a great introduction that catches the reader Readers can imagine what the author wrote IS A TRUE STORY!!! Gets right to the point with only important information Show, dont Tell (Use the 5 senses)

For YOUR Personal Narrative


Use I, we, me, us, my

Use very clear memories


Something that matters Entertains AND informs

Be sure to
Stay on topic! LOTS of detail (adjectives) Stretch your sentences Use COMPLETE sentences!!! Capital letter at beginning of sentence Punctuation at end of sentence Subject (noun, pronoun) Verb/Predicate

Be sure to
Show, dont tell!
Lots of vivid adjectives Strong action verbs Sensory details
See Hear Taste Touch Smell

Example 1:
Dont just say that you felt the snowball hit your head before you fell down and heard everyone laugh. The sting of the hard packed ice against my cheek instantly brought tears to my eyes. As I flinched away, the ice proved too much for me to keep my balance and my legs slid away out from under me. The sickening thud of my body hitting the ground was fodder for the vicious crowd and they cackled mercilessly as struggled to get back on my feet.

Example 2:
This TELLS the reader:

I was really nervous. She called on me to answer the question. I didnt know the answer. She stood right by me, when I started to cry. She told me I won the Doorknob of the day award. This happened right in front of the

Example 2:
Look at the ordinary verbs in this example: I was really nervous. She called on me to answer the question. I didnt know the answer. She stood right by me, when I started to cry. She told me I won the Doorknob of the day award. This happened right in front of the whole class.

Example 2:
This SHOWS the reader: My heart stopped each time she paused before calling on her next victim. I knew I didnt understand how to do the algebra problems; I just didnt want her to know. Then I heard my name and every nerve in my body froze. I couldnt do anything except look down at the paper. WELL? I heard her screech as she loomed over me. I could not speak. I heard someone mumble disgustedly, Geez, this was easy! Thats when the tears began to blur my eyesight and I willed them not to fall onto my paper. She didnt notice my tears, and she wouldnt have cared anyway. She just clicked away on those high heels of hers saying, Well, I guess you win the Doorknob of the Day award! I got off easy since she was capable of a

Example 2:
My heart stopped each time she paused before calling on her next victim. I knew I didnt understand how to do the algebra problems; I just didnt want her to know. Then I heard my name and every nerve in my body froze. I couldnt do anything except look down at the paper. WELL? I heard her screech as she loomed over me. I could not speak. I heard someone mumble disgustedly, Geez, this was easy! Thats when the tears began to blur my eyesight and I willed them not to fall onto my paper. She didnt notice my tears, and she wouldnt have cared anyway. She just clicked away on those high heels of hers saying, Well, I guess you win the Doorknob of the Day award! I got off easy since she was capable of cruelty far beyond that.

Dialogue:
Only use dialogue if it is necessary for the story. Punctuating the dialogue: Begin a new paragraph when the speaker changes. Use quotation marks around the speakers words.

Separate dialogue tags from the rest of the sentence with a comma, a question mark, or an exclamation point. Begin a new sentence with a capital letter.
Do not capitalize the second half of a sentence that is separated by the dialogue tag.

Examples of Dialogue:
Watch out! he screamed as he ran toward her. Theres a car coming!

Im trying to get out of the way, she shouted, as fast as I can. However, she had dropped her money and was desperately trying to pick it up quickly. Without that money, she knew she would not be eating that weekend.
GET He didnt have time to finish. By the time he yelled again, the car was a blur going by. He closed his eyes tightly and then he heard it: Laughter. Oh my gosh! That was close! she shrieked as she clutched her tip money in her fist. She already made the plans in her head to celebrate with a pizza.

Beginning
Introduce your idea, memory, reason for telling this story

Middle
Use lots of detail about your personal story

Convince your reader that is important because

End

Attention Grabber:
First sentence of personal narrative Catches the readers attention Non-Example: This is a story about when I fell into the kangaroo exhibit at the zoo. I will tell you about when I went to the zoo. Example: Help! I shouted as I desperately reached for my moms hand. A million thoughts clouded my mind: Are kangaroos dangerous? Do they bite? Will I be on the news?

Takeaway Ending:
One or two sentences that tell the reader what the main character learned or how his life changed. Examples: As Buddy said goodbye to his friends he realized that this summer at Camp Kippy was one of the best summers of his life. Ill never forget this place as long as I live, Addie said. Things change, she thought. Change isnt so bad after all. My close call with a giant alligator has certainly taught me not to dangle my feet in the water while canoeing. You can be sure that I wont be playing around lawn mowers after my long day in the Emergency Room. You better be careful the next time youre tempted to sneak outside at night. You might run into trouble!

Narrative Example (Basic):


Loosing a tooth is no fun! I have lost 4 teeth so far. The one tooth that I remember most was one on the bottom and in front. I told my dad I had a loose tooth and that it was hurting me. He said that I should just be patient and it will fall out when I least expect it. I did not want to listen to my dad, so I went upstairs to my bedroom. When I heard him turn on the TV, I decided that I was going to get this one out myself. I opened the door and walked out of my bedroom. Just as I was getting ready to open the bathroom door, I tripped over one of my toys in the hallway and fell flat on my face! When I stood up, I saw a little white tooth sitting on the ground! My tooth had fallen out when I hit the ground! I guess my dad was right, my tooth fell out when I least expected it!