Sunday, August 25, 2013

How to craft a writing prompt

Mrs. Fairchild’s Prompt:       

How did the Industrial Revolution impact the lives of women, children, and the family?

This correlates to WHII.9c. 

The first thing I am going to do is go to that specific SOL.  There are a few bullet points that will point me in the right direction:

·    Family-based cottage industries displaced by the factory system
·    Harsh working conditions with men competing with women and children for wages
·    Child labor that kept costs of production low and profits high
·    Owners of mines and factories who exercised considerable control over the lives of their laborers

·    Women and children entering the workplace as cheap labor
·    Introduction of reforms to end child labor
·    Expansion of education
·    Women’s increased demands for suffrage

This particular SOL has a fair amount of points.  I would want to narrow my focus.  Since I am a teacher, I am going to focus my research on child labor, reforms of child labor and education.  One suggestion I would make is that your prompt should also have a location and a specific time.  There was an Industrial Revolution in both England and the United States.  I am going to pick the United States.  If you look closely at the SOL it states that the time period is the 19th Century. 

My reworded prompt is going to be:

How did the American Industrial Revolution impact the lives of children during 19th Century America? 

My prompt has now narrowed my research focus.  I am only interested in the American Industrial Revolution, during the 19th century and I am only interested in how it affected children. 

Once you have your prompt written your research scope should be narrowed to a manageable point. 

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