MAIN IDEA (MI)
What is a MI

A main Idea is a complete sentence that consists of 2 parts:
  • Topic  = who or what you are writing about ONLY.
  • Author's Point of View (APOV) = express the point of view an author has about the topic

Topic + Author's Pont of View = MAIN IDEA (MI) 

Examples:

                          topic = caring for a baby
author's point of view = takes a lot of perseverance and patience.
                              MI = caring for a baby takes a lot of perseverance and patience.

                            topic = the automobile accident my cousin Tom was involved in
 author's point of view = could have been avoided if he was more careful
                               MI  = the automobile accident my cousin Tom was involved in could have been avoided if he was more careful.

                            topic = registering for college
  author's point of view = is a very tedious and nerve wracking experience
                                MI = registering for college s a very tedious and nerve wracking experience.

                             topic = David Bowie
  author's point of view = is a very unique entertainer
                                MI = David Bowie is a very unique entertainer.

How is a MI used

A paragraph is a group of sentences that = ONE MI.

  • all sentences in a paragraph should support the MI
  • all MI should support the Thesis (the larger MI of the entire essay)

NOTE

  • Put only ONE MI in a paragraph (this is the controlling abstract thought for this ONE paragraph)
  • Support that ONE MI with lots of development
  • Make sure that your development is concrete (not abstract - more abstractions = more ideas

How  to create a MI

  • Copiously Brainstorm about a topic

  • Look at all the information you gathered and think about what it is telling you about your topic.

  • From this information, decide on your Author's Point of View about this topic

  • Write your MI

Examples

Topic = first day of class

1. Brainstorm

   teach took attendance,  nervous, arrived late, played a game to introduce ourselves,   it was fun  got the syllabus,  met a nice    

   classmate and exchanged numbers, ran to the bookstore to get the textbook, the teacher looked mean,   but turned out ok  my 
   glasses fell off my nose,  a guy in the front talked a lot,  I was afraid to ask questions,  all students wrote a brief paragraph of
   introduction and read it to the class, I forgot to turn of cell phone; it rang; embarrassing

2. Decide on your point of view about the topic.
    What do all these ides tell you about your topic? That will become your point of view (APOV)

     It was nerve wracking at first but turned out to be educational and a friendly experience.

3. Create a Main Idea
    My MI would therefore look like this
:

    Because of a few mishaps, my first day of class was nerve wracking, but after a few activities   

    turned out to be an educational and friendly experience.

 

Topic = Michael Jackson

1. Brainstorm

    had lots of plastic surgery looks weird   likes to act like a child    lives in a fairy tail house   dances great   sings ok

    dresses differently     was charged with crimes against children   was very popular in the 80s

    dangled his child off a balcony   wears a mask to protect against germs  wears a glove

    bleaches his skin      looks like Diana Ross            

2. Decide on your point of view about the topic
    What do all these ides tell you about your topic? That will become your point of view (APOV)

     He is a strange dude who has very peculiar interests..

3. Create a Main Idea
    My MI which would therefore look like this
:

    Although talented and once popular, Michael Jackson is now somewhat of a joke to many people

    because of his peculiar behavior and interests.

 
Topic =  My book bag

1. Brainstorm

    made of sturdy canvas  hold pen & pencils   cost $20    lasted for 3 years so far   isn't waterproof

     starting to look tattered and worn out     has 3 pouches for different supplies  has a zipper  blue

     good strap and is adjustable    expands when necessary    has outside pockets 

2. Decide on your point of view about the topic
    What do all these ides tell you about your topic? That will become your point of view (APOV)

     It is useful and works for me

3 Create a Main Idea.
   My MI would therefore look like this
:

    My book bag, even though old and worn out, is still strong and very useful.