The American Promise

Ellipsis #15

Worksheet Description

This worksheet focuses on the skill of shortening quotations from historical speeches using ellipses. It presents an excerpt from a speech titled “The American Promise” by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, which addressed civil rights-related governance in Selma, Alabama. Students are instructed to select two sentences from the given passage and then rewrite them, employing an ellipsis to shorten each quotation without altering its fundamental message. This process allows students to engage with a piece of historical text while practicing concise writing.

The worksheet is designed to teach students how to succinctly incorporate quotes into their writing by using ellipses. It imparts the importance of being able to edit lengthy quotes for clarity and brevity, a skill that is particularly useful in academic writing and research. Students learn how to make thoughtful decisions about which parts of a quote are essential for retaining its original intent and which can be omitted. This exercise also enhances students’ ability to critically engage with historical texts, fostering a deeper understanding of the context and significance of the original speech.