There are Two Sides to Every Story
Academic Prompt
100 Points
Throughout our “Rebels on a Mission” unit, we have been discussing how characters can have multiple layers in a text. Many of the characters in the two novels we have been reading cannot be defined as simply “good” or “evil” characters. The purpose of conducting such a character analysis is to be able to examine multiple points of view and to visualize the characters as a whole- complete with their “good” and “bad” actions.
For this assignment, you are asked to write a 4-5 page persuasive essay that argues how 1 character from The Scarlet Letter cannot be classified distinctly as a hero or a villain in the novel. You may choose from the following options: Hester, Dimmesdale, and Pearl. Additionally, you will participate in a debate in which I will assign you a character and a side to argue. This paper should help you prepare for the debate.
Your essay should include:
· An engaging introduction that catches the interest of the reader and stays focused on the purpose of the essay.
· A thesis statement that clearly defines the argument.
· Specific textual examples (events that occurred in the book or dialogue of the characters) to prove that there are “good” and “bad” qualities to EACH character.
· At least three direct quotations from the novel.
· Sentence variety and numerous transitions to keep the paper flowing.
· A Works Cited page (citing the novel as your only source) that is formatted in MLA style
· A clear, organized argument that supports your claim that the character cannot be distinctly classified
Monday, October 10th: In-class prewriting exercise (journal entry). Please bring your copy of the book and your journal. Also, we will be having a review of MLA documentation formatting today.
Wednesday, October 12th: You will have thirty minutes of the class period to work on your draft at your seat.
Monday, October 17th: Draft of the paper is due. You must have at least three pages to share with your workshop group. You will also have personal conferences with me on this day.
Friday, October 21th: Final draft is due. Turn in rough draft, prewriting journal entry, peer review sheet, and works cited page as well. Debate Day!
On the debate day, you will be given the side you must defend for your character. You will have about 5 minutes to write down quick notes from your paper for help. The debates will be graded based off of whether or not each student uses textual evidence as rhetoric to frame his or her argument. Each student must speak during the debate.

Works Cited:
Hawthorne, Nathanial. The Scarlet Letter. New York. Penguin Group, 2009. Print.
Rubistar. ALTEC at University of Kansas, n.d. Web.

Category
Exceeds Standards
Meets Standards
Approaches Standards
Does not meet standards
Score
Attention Grabber
The introductory paragraph addresses the audience and introduces the paper in an engaging way while maintaining relevance to the topic
8-10 points
The introductory paragraph addresses the audience and maintains relevance to the topic.
6-7 points
The introductory paragraph introduces the paper, but it is not audience-appropriate or does not maintain relevance to the topic
4-5 points
The introductory paragraph is not appropriate for the audience and does not set the focus for the paper.
0-3 points
/10
Focus or Thesis Statement
The thesis statement names the topic of the essay and outlines the main points to be discussed without directly listing them. (Umbrella thesis)
8-10 points
The thesis statement names the topic of the essay and outlines the main points to be discussed.
6-7 points
The thesis statement outlines some of the points to be discussed yet does not distinctly name the topic.
4-5 points
The thesis statement does not name the topic or preview what will be discussed.
0-3 points
/10
Evidence and Examples
All of the evidence and examples are specific, textual, and relevant. Explanations are given that show how each piece of evidence supports the author’s position. There are at least three direct quotes.
35-40 points
Most of the evidence and examples are specific, textual, and relevant. Explanations are given that show how a piece of evidence supports the author’s position. There are at least 3 direct quotes.
20-34 points
Some of the evidence and examples are relevant and have explanations that show how the pieces of evidence support the author’s position.
10-19 points
Evidence and examples are not relevant and/or not explained.
0-9 points
/40
Sentence Structure
Almost all sentences are well-constructed with varied structure. Numerous transitions are used.
15-20 points
Most of the sentences are well-constructed and there is some varied structure in the essay. Many transitions are used.
13-14 points
Some of the sentences are well-constructed, but there is little variation in structure. Some transitions may be used.
10- 12 points
Most sentences are not well-constructed or varied. Little or no transitions are used.
0-9 points
/20
MLA Formatting
There are no errors in the MLA formatting. All quotations are cited, and the Works Cited page is accurate.
8-10 points
There are little to no errors in MLA formatting. The quotations are all cited, and the Works Cited Page is accurate.
6-7 points
There are several errors in the MLA formatting.
4-5 points
Few to none of the quotations are formatted properly. The Works Cited page may be nonexistent.
0-3 points.
/10
Debate
The student is prepared for the debate with a completed paper and takes notes during the journaling session. He or she offers numerous textual examples during the argument.
8-10 points
The student is prepared for the debate with a completed paper and takes notes during the journaling session. He or she offers a few textual examples during the argument.
6-7 points
The student is prepared for the debate with a completed paper and takes notes during the journaling session. He or she participates in the debate but does not offer any textual evidence during the argument.
4-5 points
The student does not come to class prepared for the debate and does not offer textual evidence during the argument.
0-3 points
/10