Riddle: Gerrymandering

Feedback Please: Do you know how?

Lecture/Demo: Something from the Bar

Research Tip: Rowan’s Library


  • Maybe not the one you wanted, but use what you’ve got.
  • Search for the article you want from the Library database, using the name of the paper and the name of the article.
    • In this case, Washington Post and “Trump Quietly Abandons Proposing Ideas to Curb Gun Violence . . . .Rowan Search
    • Fine-tune your search if necessary, in this case to search Newspapers.Resource Newspaper
  • Reap the benefits of your tuition!

Resource Found


Task: Editorial for Portfolio

26 Responses to CLASS 20: THU NOV 07

  1. morra2024 says:


    0. Class started with a discussion of gerrymandering. Main takeaway: even something as important as election statistics can be convoluted to serve the interests of a single group. In short, believe nothing of what you hear and only half of what you see.

    1. Vagueness is the nemesis of any writer. Asking open-ended questions that lead to no clarity are to be avoided at all cost. A writer should be the confident, honest, and responsible expert on the given matter who clearly and respectfully leads the reader to the desired conclusion.

    2. As students of Rowan University, we have the privilege of using Rowan’s library as an invaluable abundant resource for writing our Editorials, which are due 11/11 by midnight. They should include all of the required components, some of which are addressing the topic directly, having a bold, clear thesis, and clocking at about 1000 words.


  2. tenere84 says:

    Notes 11/7

    Something from the Bar:

    – Writers constantly tell but don’t show; i.e they give unclear arguments and information to the reader, leaving them confused an uncomfortable and with only one option: the exit.
    – A writer’s job is to serve, meaning deliver on all of the promises they made earlier and effectively persuade the reader to agree with their argument.

    Good writers:
    1.) are the subject matter experts – they know what they have to offer to the customer.
    2.) have already examined the pertinent evidence – they can tell the customer, effectively, why their food (argument) is good.
    3.) have come to the right conclusions – they make the most reasonable claims, which lead to the most reasonable conclusion
    4.) If they establish your trust, they can guide you to the right conclusions – customer takes what the writer has to offer if they trust the writer
    5.) Everybody is happy when you come to the writ conclusions – customer is happy with the food/drink.

    How to Write
    – Show, don’t tell. Instead of saying you have a selection of delicious appetizers, describe in detail what those appetizers are.

    What to do and not to do:

    1.) Don’t ask open-ended questions. Offer what you have with reasonable alternatives.
    2.) Don’t promise that you’ll have important information to share . . . later. Again, show, don’t tell.
    3.) Don’t blame the kitchen. The kitchen is not the entire world of knowledge, just the knowledge that you have gained (Writing Plan).
    4.) Don’t apologize for what you don’t have. Work with what you DO have.
    5.) Never contradict your customer’s preferences. Offer your opinion and point of view without criticizing or blaming your reader.

    Since we are Rowan students, the Campbell Library can help us find sources for which we would usually have to pay.
    – Broad search: “New York Times Major Issue”
    – Specific search: “New York Times” + “Major Issue”

    – Address the topic directly; do not go off-track.
    – Refer specifically to at least one NYT editorial, article, or column.
    – Cite other stories (Optional (not)) to support your argument.
    – Make your thesis bold.
    – Condense your essay down to 1000 words.
    – You do not need credentialing.
    – Proofread many times.
    – Keep it timely (preferably not issues from 40 years ago that may still be kind-of relevant today.)


  3. ajuuy7 says:

    We learned how politics work where although everyone votes, it’s all up to the electoral college and the way the districts are drawn. The introductory paragraph is similar to a waitress asking, “Something from the bar?” Instead they should give them direct information that makes readers change their opinion on a topic. “Something from the Bar?” link has perfect examples of right and wrong lessons about tips to be better writers. We learn to use the Campbell library if we don’t have a subscription to a website. It also cites things for you right on the website. Refer to last link for techniques while writing Editorial Draft.


  4. 11/7 Notes:
    Riddle: The voting system is one of the many things in our country that is flawed. However, we determined a way to possibly make the process more fair to the people and the parties on the ballot.
    “Something from the Bar?”
    – Be specific and have brevity, do not make your reader work to find your stance or reveal your argument. An ambiguous argument will not appeal to the audience.
    -Your job as a writer is to guide your audience through your paper like an expert.
    – Asking open-ended questions, not providing adequate sources and evidence, and not being specific in the piece may turn your reader off from the writing.
    – Editorial–> must squeeze multiple ideas into 1000 words. If able to do this successfully, then you are successful in your writing.


  5. bmdpiano says:


    Riddle: Gerrymandering
    -How maps are split up to allow certain candidates to win.

    Lecture: Something from the bar (metaphor)
    -Do NOT ask in writing, “What do you want to know?”
    -Do NOT drag along a reader, guide them along and take control
    -Facts won’t change minds
    -Establish trust by not lying and being sincere
    -NO open ended questions that can lead the reader in another direction

    Sources through Rowan’s Library:
    -Rowan can help avoid paying for sources
    -Quote phrases to cut down searches to find the right source
    -Use newspaper articles

    Editorial for Portfolio:
    -Imperative language
    -Make thesis sentence bold
    -Trim the idea down into 1000 words but start with more and cut it down


  6. First we went over a riddle that was on gerrymandering and how politicians can make up and redraw the districts.
    We then went over the question “something from the bar?” and how this question is like an introductory paragraph. When you give info like that with no guidance then you will never change the readers mind. If asking questions you have to get the answer it be the one you want. If it doesn’t look like your going to conclude the right answer then don’t use it. Always try and move the reader to your side.
    Next we went over how the rowan library has articles from The NY Times and how we can find them by searching key words and using quotation marks and the filter. You can also use it to make a citation.
    When asking for some feedback be specific as to want you want.


  7. lucbe219 says:

    To start class, we started with explaining how voting and boarders of districts work. Later, we discussed a metaphor about how we should be writing. We need to show our reader the information in the foreground of our introductory paragraph. Also, it is important for us to guide our readers to make better choices, or else they will stick with their original opinions. We can never offer our readers open ended questions or rhetorical questions where we have no control over their answers. This analogy was very helpful for my future papers for this class, and also for the rest of my time as a student. The professor discussed with us that articles we may need for papers will not have to be paid for anymore because the Rowan Library has all of them in their system for tuition payers to use. We just need to go onto their website and be very specific and use quotes to find our article for free where you could also cite right from the article.


  8. 11/7
    Brief representation of how voting works and can be won even with having fewer votes.
    – Similar to drinks at a bar, readers need to be treated properly or they wont follow what your saying and be on your side
    – You need to guide the reader with your argument rather than saying something and telling them to figure it out and take control themselves
    – You want to control what your reader thinks not opposite
    – Never ask open ended questions unless you answer it right away
    – Never promise to share info later in writing because it will make the reader skip ahead and skip possible main points of you argument

    – learned the quick way to use Campbell library which is Rowans Library website
    – Learned how much info you can find using said website
    – You can make your search much more detailed by adding “” around a word or words so they search for the phrase

    – Talked a little bit about feedback request and how it’s better for Prof to get back if asked a specific question rather than just feedback please


  9. Valcom says:

    Notes 11/7/19
    [] Class started off with the Gerrymandering Exercise which is a way the district map is drawn is what determines the majority votes. A majority of the votes of blue and red represent the democrats and republicans.
    -This exercise shows how politics will go all lengths to win a majority of the votes for when it comes to elections.
    [] Lecture/Demo – Asking from the Bar: When you go out to eat, the waiter will come to the table and ask if you need anything from the bar. Doing so, many people do not want drinks from the bar because they are very expensive and over priced so the question is useless when waiters attempt to ask many.
    -Rhetorical questions are dangerous weapons. Share the information now not later, sharing information later will cause the reader to not understand.
    -Everyone ends up happy when you come to the right conclusion.
    [] Rowan Library – When you come up to some websites such as The Washington Post, use the Campbell Library online database to research articles.
    -Do not pay for a website because you can use Rowans Library for free as a tuition paying student.
    – For a broad search make sure you use quotations: “Trumps ban on specific guns”
    – While for a specific search you can use quotations and symbols such as a plus sign to narrow the search down: “New York Times” + “Trumps ban on specific guns”
    [] Final Portfolio
    -Make sure to utilize and work on feedback given when you ask.
    -Editorial for Portfolio due on Monday Nov 11th by midnight. Editing for the Editorial will end on Nov 18th.
    -Use the checklist to finalize and make changes to the editorial and make sure it has all of the components needed to make it the best it can be.


  10. yankeefan25 says:

    Class Notes:
    You never wanna start your essay with “something from the bar?” You need to make specific offers which are going to provoke thought in the reader. You have to guide the reader toward your side instead of just throwing facts at them . Facts will not change someones opinions, but guidance will. You have to offer up your evidence and then lay out the facts. After guiding them there, you lay them out and hope that they make the correct choice. Open ended questions do not accomplish anything and only hurt yourself. Instead of saying there are a lot of options, you offer each of them. When you cannot find what you are looking for, you find something better.


  11. voxpopuli75 says:

    – You should give your reader information in your introductory paragraph. If you do not provide any information you will not keep the reader engaged and will not persuade the reader. You as a writer should “guide” the reader to drawing the conclusion you want them to.
    – Don’t ask open ended questions, it might make the reader draw a conclusion you didn’t intend for them to draw.
    – Come across as an expert on what you are writing about in order to better persuade your reader
    – The library’s database is an invaluable resource for locating sources.
    -Be specific as to what type of feedback you are looking for when seeking feedback in order to receive meaningful and prompt feedback.


  12. ahntkd99 says:

    – It’s important because it can make a vote meaningless and completely subvert the very American and democratic core value of “one person, one vote.”
    Lecture/Demo: Something from the Bar
    Not to do:
    – Don’t ask open-ended questions
    – Don’t promise that you’ll have important information to share later
    – Don’t apologize for what you don’t have
    – Never contradict your customer’s preferences
    To do:
    – Instead of open questions
    – Instead of saying there are countless options
    – Instead of blaming the kitchen
    – Instead of saying the owner forgot to order seafood
    – Instead of arguing about your customer’s favorite cut
    Research Tip
    -Go to Rowan’s Library website and find resources


  13. smellycat23 says:

    Gerrymandering is the use of manipulating boundaries to favor one party and is used in the United States frequently. In the example we did in class, there were 40 red dots and 60 blue dots. In three different examples, blue won the majority twice but red was able to win the majority once even though it is the minority. It was interesting to see how state legislative districts will go so far to win the majority in a state.

    A writer is like a server because they are the experts of their subject matter, they have examined the evidence, and they have come to the right conclusions. The job of the writer is to help the readers to decide and draw their conclusions toward your side. Instead of asking open-ended questions, a writer should tell the reader enticing examples like a server would with drinks. A writer should not promise special information later and should deliver it quickly so the reader is entertained. Their gratification would be delayed. The kitchen should also not be blamed, meaning that it’s no one else’s fault. When something is unavailable, substitute it with something better. Lastly, a writer should not contradict a reader’s opinion.

    Rowan Campbell Library offers databases and newspapers that would cost money to students and faculty of Rowan. Mr. Hodges showed us how to limit our search options by putting quotations around our title of the article and source.

    Our Editorial is due Monday night, November 12 and must be 1000 words. It will be easier to write 2000 words of material and shorten it than write 500 words with extra fluff. Our thesis should be put in bold and we should be replying to a specific NYT article that must be cited.


  14. mpsj13 says:

    Something from the Bar
    -Asking “something from the bar” brings more questions and confusion than intended and ends in a costumer saying only the safe thing.
    *Readers who are given too much new information or data retreat into their opinion and are unable to be persuaded
    -To effectively write, stay in charge of the subject matter, approach it like an expert, and guide the reader to the right conclusion.
    -Do not give a lot of vague data and evidence instead give a carefully selected few examples that are capable of persuading the reader without overwhelming them
    -Do not ask open ended questions, promise to have information later, apologize for what you don’t have, or contradict the readers opinion
    *I have not received advice like this in the past and find the metaphor to be very helpful.
    Rowan’s Library
    -Search for the title of an article in the Rowan database
    -Use the filters (article, dissertation, newspaper article) to fine tune your search
    -Database link
    Editorial for Portfolio
    -Due November 11 by midnight
    -Editing phase ends Monday November 18
    -Bold the thesis statement
    -Editing Checklist
    *Address topic directly
    *Refer to a specific article
    *Cite or do not others to support your argument
    *Be certain your thesis effectively identifies your issue and the change you demand
    *Bolden your thesis sentence
    *Use 1,000 words clearly and distinctly
    *Editorials do not use credentialing
    *Identify situations that have you writing about the topic at this time


  15. Today we were talking about being specfic in writing. We then talked bout citing but not in detail. WE went over the fact that our editorial is due on November 11th at midnight so we have till still to ask fro feedback.


  16. bestbaker123 says:

    Notes 11/7/19:
    – Gerrymandering Exercise: The way a district map is drawn is what determines the majority votes. The map that has more blue votes than red votes, will have a majority of blue votes, meaning the blue mayor will win.
    – If you want to change the majority, let the blue districts be made up of all blue voters, so the blue voters only win 2. The other districts will be more red voters than blue, so that causes the red voters to win.
    – When you go to restaurants and diners, the servers will ask if you want something to drink or something from the bar. That is the most useless question ever. The customers might not know anything about how expensive the drinks are or what drinks are available.
    – The server should offer more specific things up front so there is no hesitation or confusion on the customer’s part. That way the customer is guided by you, in safe hands, so that you as the server can get the customer to be happy and you also benefit the restaurant and yourself since you want to make good tips.
    – You, the writer and server, are the subject matter experts. You know the prices of everything and you know what is best for the restaurant and the customer.
    – Never ask open-ended questions because that doesn’t help your argument as a “server”/writer and it will only mislead your reader.
    – Don’t mislead your reader with promised information that you think you will reveal later.
    – Never apologize for information you don’t have or say you couldn’t find some kind of information.
    – Don’t try to argue with anything your reader already believes is 1000% true. You will probably only fail to reach a conclusion that your reader likes.
    – Editorial for Portfolio is due Monday at midnight. You can ask for feedback for a week but make sure you specify what exactly you need feedback on so it actually helps you and doesn’t take too long to get feedback.
    – For the editorial, look at the checklist and make sure it has all the components.


  17. 11/07/19 Notes
    Lecture/Demo: How to sell a cocktail:
    – “Something from the bar?” is the worst way to sell a cocktail.The question is broad and causes hesitation and panic to those who have no knowledge of what drinks they have and how they are priced.
    – How to “Serve”:
    1.They are the subject matter experts
    2.They have already examined the pertinent evidence
    3.They have come to the right conclusions
    4.If they establish your trust, they can guide you to the right conclusions
    5.Everybody is happy when you come to the right conclusions
    – How to Write:
    – Guide your reader (diner) to the right conclusion.
    – Extend a limited sampling of carefully selected delicacies (data and evidence).
    Lessons From the Server:
    1.Don’t ask open-ended questions. Instead, give suggestions.
    2.Don’t promise that you’ll have important information to share . . . later.
    3.Don’t blame the reader.
    4.Don’t apologize for what you don’t have.
    5.Never contradict your reader’s preferences.
    Research Tip: Rowan’s Library
    – You can find newspaper articles without having to subscribe to any outlets. Use the link you found from the Campbell Library search for references in your writing.
    – Broad search: “New York Times What Lies in Suicide’s Wake”
    – Specific search: “New York Times” + “What Lies in Suicide’s Wake”
    Editorial for Portfolio:
    – Mon. Nov.11: Copy and paste your Editorial Draft into a new post called Editorial for Portfolio.


  18. doglover441 says:

    -How political parties are divided can become very unfair based on the methods the divider chooses
    -Servers should never ask if their customer needs anything without suggesting good options from the menu or bar
    -They are the subject matter experts
    -They have already examined the pertinent evidence
    -They have come to the right conclusions
    -If they establish your trust, they can guide you to the right conclusions
    -Everybody is happy when you come to the right conclusions
    -Don’t as open ended questions tell them something wonderful now
    -Entertain the reader tell them the information right now
    -tell them what they want
    -Editorial for portfolio
    -Address the topic directly
    -Refer specifically to at least one New York Times editorial
    -Thesis Statement effectively identifies your issue
    -editorials do not contain credentialing


  19. Writing needs to be more specific. For example, we compared the saying of many waiter and waitresses “can I get you anything to start,” which is basically useless. Being more specific gets the attention more than being broad. Saying instead, can I get you a sample of the wings are much easier because an option is given. If you were to say “can I get you something from the bar,” you would only be able to think of every drink ever made at a bar. It is our job at writers to be specific and make sure the readers have what they want. If you give them too much information, the readers may get overwhelmed and retreat back to their old way of thinking. Arrangement of information is another key factor in writing. Breaking up the information given will make the reader feel less overwhelmed. Rowan’s library has a large number of articles that would cost money if we were to find them on some website, but because we are students here, we get these resources for free.


  20. lazybear8 says:

    Gerrymandering- to manipulate the boundaries of (an electoral constituency) so as to favor one party or class.
    Does not seem democratic that when Blue gets to draw the map, Blue wins every time. This is “fair”. But if Red, the minority stays in power long enough to draw the maps, the minority winning every time would seem unfair.
    Selling appetizers. Instead of saying “Something from the bar?”, describe what you’re selling, bring examples to the table. Metaphor for writers. When writing you have to inform your reader of your knowledge. The writer is the subject matter expert. As the writer you have all the power. There are things you can leave out of the conversation but you should also know what to say to guide the reader/customer to the right conclusion. Don’t offer up vague promises of a variety of material. Find most interesting and “delicious” data, letting the reader know what’s available to choose. Don’t ask open ended questions. Entertain the reader quickly. Don’t delay gratification. Takes a little longer but worth it in the end.
    This a great way of looking at writing that I have never seen before. Very helpful and interesting.
    Use the Rowan Library to access articles on websites you are not subscribed to.


  21. hershey515 says:

    8 Am Comp Class Notes

    – [ ] Having more blue votes to red votes when divided into clusters
    – [ ] We talked about how the country works life how it was displayed on the board with the clusters. We waste votes in large parts of the map by letting them win unanimously.
    – [ ] If your votes do not get counted in the majority votes you’ll feel as if it is not even meaningful
    Something From The Bar
    – [ ] Professor used the analogy of working to the bar as a waiter and what a good waiter would say to a customer
    – [ ] By being specific when waiting and telling the customers what the restaurant does good in glowing terms, this promotes the food better.
    – [ ] You cannot ask open ended questions without guiding them
    – [ ] You’ve got to intrigue your reader by offering details in able to convince them.
    – [ ] In order to write you must stay in charge of the subject matter by guiding your reader. Arrange your data carefully and letting them know what is available.
    Links used in Essays
    – [ ] Make sure the link you use in your writing is able to open up and support.
    – [ ] To find sources online for free and full text on the Rowan University library section.
    Editorial Portfolio
    – [ ] Using the checklist to finalize what the main components are for the editorial to meet its expectations


  22. iamsleepy01 says:

    – Be specific in writing or else the sentence will be useless and not helpful at all in your writing. To improve writing, we should guide the reader to problem and explain with evidence that could convince the reader.
    – Don’t ask open ended question and don’t promise information that wouldn’t be mentioned until later.
    – use Rowan Campbell Library to read a free online article from the Washington post.


  23. iamsleepy01 says:

    – Be specific in writing or else the sentence will be useless and not helpful at all in your writing. To improve writing, we should guide the reader to problem and explain with evidence that could convince the reader.
    – Don’t ask open ended question and don’t promise information that wouldn’t be mentioned until later.
    – use Rowan Campbell Library to read a free online article from the Washington post.


  24. athenapup4 says:

    11/7 Notes
    Riddle: something from the bar
    Instead of asking a broad question like “how can I help you” try asking more specific questions like “can I run an errand for you”. Or speaking in restaurant terms “Can I get you anything to start with” try suggesting an item like your favorite appetizer.
    Apply this to writing. Stay in charge of the subject matter. Don’t ask open ended questions. Say something wonderful first to persuade them .
    Make specific offers.
    Editorial for Portfolio: due by midnight November 18th early submission November 11th so you can receive early feedback and have time to revise your paper.
    Ask for feedback if not received yet.
    Editorial should be persuasive.
    Address the topic directly
    Refer specifically to at least one article in the NY Times
    Be certain your thesis statement is effective
    Bold thesis statement
    Use 1000 words


  25. lelebxby says:

    Class notes – 11/7/19
    – We began class discussing gerrymandering, how if you don’t get the most votes, but you do make the maps, create as many districts as possible in which you will win by just one vote, and let the other party waste their majority votes winning their seats in landslides.
    Something from the Bar?
    – Readers faced with too many choices tend to retreat causing you to be unable to persuade them.
    – Asking vague questions like “anything from the bar?” has no clear guidance and can cause hesitation, confusion, reluctance and panic.
    – When writing, don’t ask open-ended questions, don’t contradict your customers preferences, don’t blame others, don’t be apologetic and promise you’ll have important to share.
    – Stay in charge of the subject matter, approach it like an expert and guide your reader towards the right decision.
    Campbell Library
    – We went over the different ways to find citations on the Campbell library’s networks without having to subscribe to more news outlets.


  26. bane1900 says:

    Started class discussing the voting breakdown and how it favors one party over the other – we found a way to make it more fair, possibly giving the other party a good fight.
    The restaurant analogy for persuasive and college level writing was extremely helpful. Having the ability to keep the subject matter in your hands and having the knowledge to back it up is crucial. Writers also have to guide readers through their writing in order to keep readers attention and to keep the writing piece fresh and exciting. Always command attention from readers and stay engaged enough so they don’t stray away from what you are offering


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