Assignment 1: Narrative based on Non-fiction
In The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, the author reveals that Henrietta did not wish to donate her cells for research and that the family was not exactly pleased with the manner in which her body was used for science. Choose one of the following people from the text and write a 400 word minimum narrative from his or her point of view. You should include some of the facts and information from the text, but mostly this will be a fictionalized account of what happened based on your imagination.
Deborah Lacks (Henrietta’s daughter)
David Lacks (Henrietta’s husband)
If you need help getting started, consider the following ideas as food for thought:
1) What time period do you wish to set your story (when Henrietta was living or after her death?)
2) Perhaps you’d like to write from Deborah’s perspective as a teenager living with an ailing mother.
3) Consider writing from David’s perspective as he realizes his wife is dying or when he finds out that science has taken her cells without his knowledge or approval.
There are many more ways to approach this assignment; feel free to be creative based on the text. Since this is a narrative, your paper will be assessed on descriptive elements such as dialogue, interesting adjectives, vivid verbs, figurative language, etc. You’ll want to consider the elements of a narrative (setting, characterization, plot, style).
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Before you submit, check the following:
1. Have I read the rubric?
2. Does my paper fully address the prompt, and do I have a clear thesis statement in my introduction?
3. Are my paper and sources in MLA format? The paper should be Times New Roman, 12 pt. font, double-spaced. Click here for an example paper in MLA. Click here to see a sample Works Cited page. Need further assistance on how to cite? View this short video: How to Format Your Paper and Create Works Cite Page
Rubric Name: Assignment 1: Narrative in Response to Nonfiction
This table lists criteria and criteria group name in the first column. The first row lists level names and includes scores if the rubric uses a numeric scoring method.
Author chooses one of the characters and provides a creative and well-written imaginative take based on the non-fiction text excerpt. The prompt is fully addressed.
Author chooses one of the characters and provides a creative and imaginative take based on the non-fiction text excerpt. The prompt is mostly addressed. Portions may be slightly underdeveloped, but overall, the essay addresses the prompt.
Author chooses one of the characters and attempts to provide a creative and imaginative take based on the non-fiction text excerpt. The prompt is mostly addressed. Portions may be underdeveloped, and imagination may be lacking.
Author chooses one of the characters and attempts to provide a creative and imaginative take based on the non-fiction text excerpt, but the ideas are lacking and underdeveloped, and imagination is not obvious.
Paper is either off-topic or there is not enough written to grade.
The story is very well organized. One idea or scene follows another in a logical sequence with clear transitions.
The story is pretty well organized. One idea or scene may seem out of place. Clear transitions are used.
The story is a little hard to follow. The transitions are sometimes not clear.
Ideas and scenes seem to be randomly arranged.
Your paper is not organized enough to grade.
The story contains many creative details and/or descriptions that contribute to the reader’s enjoyment. The author has really used his/her imagination.
The story contains a few creative details and/or descriptions that contribute to the reader’s enjoyment. The author has used his/her imagination.
The story contains a few creative details and/or descriptions, but they distract from the story. The author has tried to use his/her imagination.
There is little evidence of creativity in the story. The author does not seem to have used much imagination.
The story-telling is basic without use of descriptive elements.
Several action verbs (active voice) are used to describe what is happening in the story. The story seems exciting!
Several action verbs are used to describe what is happening in the story, but the word choice doesn’t make the story as exciting as it could be.
A variety of verbs (passive voice) are used and describe the action accurately but not in a very exciting way.
Little variety seen in the verbs that are used. The story seems a little boring.
The only verbs used are standard ones– passive, not active.
Writer makes no errors in grammar or spelling that distracts the reader from the content.
Writer makes 1-2 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content.
Writer makes 3-4 errors in grammar or spelling.
Writer makes more than 4 errors in grammar.
Too many errors obscure the paper’s meaning.
Rubric Total Score
90 points minimum
80 points minimum
70 points minimum
60 points minimum
0 points minimum
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