How to write smartly with outlines

Welcome to the computer lab. Be nice to the sub.

Your work for the day consists of creating three complete outlines, each of which could be expanded into a complete essay.


Because I order you to do it, by the authority vested in me by the administration, your parents, and the state, and you must comply.

Also, If you are able to write a well-structured essay, even if many of the other aspects of your writing are very poor, you will still probably pass the test. Having gone through many of these tests, and examined the grading procedures, there’s nothing that will earn you more points than a strong structure and well-developed ideas.

So what are we supposed to do?


  • Open up this word processing document: Outline practice worksheet. It contains three questions and outline “skeletons” ready for you to fill in the blanks.
  • Put your name on the top
  • The first two questions, you can answer from knowledge and experience you already have. Make up evidence and examples if you want to.
  • On the last question, you’ll need to read this article first (link), gather information and evidence, and then outline your answer to the question. We practiced this in class with the article about Nine Inch Nails. If you paid attention, it should be pretty easy.
  • REMINDER: When you fill in the blanks in the outline, just include brief notes, not whole sentences or paragraphs. You just need enough information to remember what you wanted to say.
  • In the evidence/example space, be very specific. Think of a story or fact to support your point. Don’t restate what you write under “premise.”

That’s it! Finish it, print it, hand it in on Friday in class for big points. If you finish early, please be respectful of the others in the class still working.



Outline practice worksheet



5 responses to “How to write smartly with outlines

  1. thanks for making me no longer a loser.

    for being such an incredible teacher, Matt Thomas.
    non-loser maker.

  2. Ashley Brown

    Matt I can’t think about premises today.
    I’m sorry that I am wasting my class time.

    My mind is just in my own Wonderland, that doesn’t evolve Chesire Cats or Queens, and I can’t seem to focus.

  3. Dear god, please save our souls.
    Mike Jones (our sub) is… well I don’t know where.
    And people think it’s okay to goof off and talk really loud and be really annoying.

    OH MY GOD.

  4. Tomorrow will be filled with fabulous prizes… one of witch that which has red hair…

  5. oops haha i didn’t mean to press enter. haha sorry robin is coming with me tomorrow because we are david archuleta hunting together with gabby.

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