Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Outline template for Word-Search papers

I-Search a Word: Outline template

(I also published this file on Canvas. I think. Let me know.)

The Beginning

Why I chose my word

What it means to me as I begin to search


The Middle

History and major meanings


Original (oldest) meanings

Evolution over time, significant use in Shakespeare, Bible, other pillars of English literature

Major changes, added meanings over time

Contemporary use and meanings

Most common modern dictionary definition(s)

Related words, major (most interesting) combining forms



Occurrences in art, music, journalism, fashion, politics, famous sayings, etc

Information that was brand new to me or even surprising; discoveries made along the way


The Ending

Most important, interesting things I learned

How my search expanded my understanding of a single word


I hope this template proves useful. Don’t follow it slavishly as a formula; adapt it creatively and individually to fit the larger patterns of meaning you have learned and the discoveries you have made along the way. If you are genuinely interested in what you are learning, the paper you write will be more interesting as a result.