Rhetoric, such as the argument of a paper, improved my writing and reading comprehension skills through finding a claim for an idea, and providing reasons and evidence to support that claim. An example of how rhetoric has improved my writing skills is through in-class writings. Every morning, the class begins with in-class writings, and the topics can be about a novel or an article. Students were required to read a question posted on the board, answer the question while supporting their answer or claim with reasons and evidence. Students were given five to eight minutes to answer the question. In-class writings made me think about the question and my best approach to answering the question. I was required to make a claim and then provide reasons and evidence, from the article or novel, to support my claim. In-class writings were quick which made me think quickly but critically about what I was going to write about. Not only was I required to answer the question by stating a claim, but I was also required to support my claim with reasons and evidence. In the beginning, I found in-class writings to be difficult because my claims never answered the question and I also lacked evidence to support my claim. However, as the semester continued my in-class writings improved because I was able to answer the questions with a claim and provide evidence to support my claim. In-class writings improved my writing skills by improving my claims in my papers. My past papers, such as the History and Social Issues paper lacked a strong claim because I had a hard time answering what the prompt was asking me to do. However, with in-class writings my claims in my final research paper improved as I was able to answer the question and provide reasons and evidence to support my claim.
Rhetoric also improved my reading comprehension skills through in-class writings. In the beginning of the semester, my in-class writing grades suffered because I did not understand what the question was asking me to answer. However, as the semester continued my reading comprehension skills increased because in-class writings began to teach my brain to take a different approach at the question. I always believed the questions were either too easy or too hard to understand and because of this, I asked similar questions in my head except in different words. By doing this, I was able to understand the questions and answer them relatively quickly, compared to the beginning of the semester which took me several minutes to think of an answer. The rhetoric behind in-class writings improved my reading comprehension skills by allowing me to take a different approach at the question, and because there were so many in-class writings I had several opportunities to do so.