As we make our way through life, education continues, including those pesky academic book reports. If we are fortunate enough to have all the opportunities an education can offer, then we will be expected to gather our thoughts and express them in a coherent fashion. [Teachers have always been fond of assigning those essays, termed “book reports,” that make the students groan]. For some classes these model paper assignments are the beginning and the end for the grading system. Unfortunately, some students struggle with the expression of the written word, and so these essays cause great anxiety.
Academic book reports register emotions within the learning population that range from delight to disdain. Navigating the perils of composing essays is fraught with landmines called verbs, adjectives, split infinitives and the dreaded comma splice. Add main idea, statement of problem, supporting arguments, counterpoints, conclusions and recommendations to the waters, and many students give up before they start. Unfortunately, the “report” part of a book report causes students to generalize their anxiety to the books themselves. These essays can discourage individuals from enjoying one of the greatest pleasures in life – reading! This angst can be lessened or even extinguished with the use of model papers as learning tools.
As with any other subject matter, writing academic book reports can be a learned skill. Often the student only needs direction and clarity through the assistance of a model paper. Many learning objectives throughout life are accomplished with examples. Sometimes, an example of how to do the work is all the student needs. Model papers are a proven way to demonstrate the goal to those students who might need the extra instruction or an added boost of confidence. Individuals spend a large portion of their lives talking, emailing, chatting and texting. Writing a book report is no different than telling a good friend about a favorite movie or television program. All that is needed for a response of delight instead of disdain at the teacher’s announcement of this assignment are the skills for successfully accomplishing the task!