Friday, November 9, 2012

Paragraph Writing for Essays and Reports

All paragraphs have (or should have) a topic sentence that introduces the main idea. The body of the paragraph provides supporting details for the main idea. Finally, a good paragraph should have a closing sentence (unless the paragraph is a narrative which doesn't necessarily give factual information).

There are 4 types of paragraphs:

1. A descriptive paragraph describes something.
2. A narrative paragraph tells a story.
3. A persuasive paragraph discusses an opinion.
4. An expository or explanatory paragraph explains

Descriptive Paragraphs

A descriptive paragraph describes a person, place, thing, or idea. When writing a descriptive paragraph, students should remember to use words that describe the 5 senses (seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling). Students should remember to tell the reader about the colors, sizes, smells, tastes, and shape things are. It is the writer's objective to make the reader visualize what is being read.

Narrative Paragraph

In a narrative paragraph, students tell a story by sharing and describing experiences. Narrative paragraphs (hence narrative stories) should keep the reader involved and engaged by making the reader want to continue reading. When writing a narrative paragraph, students should include colorful adjectives and descriptive verbs.

Persuasive Paragraph

A persuasive paragraph involves the writer expressing his or her opinion on a topic. The writer wants to convince the reader that his or her point of view is correct and right. Persuasive paragraphs should contain facts and data which support the writer's position. The writer should support his or her point of view the best that he or she can in order to persuade or convince the reader.

Expository/Explanatory Paragraph

The reason for an expository or explanatory paragraph is to give information about a subject. These paragraphs should explain ideas, give directions, or show a process of how to accomplish something. Expository or explanatory paragraphs should have factual information provided in sequential order. The use of transition words is important when writing an exposition.

Although these paragraphs differ in some ways, they still share some common elements. They should all have a sentence that shows the main idea and other sentences that support the main idea.

Resource Box
S. Ackerman is the author of ‘Learn'Em Good-Essay Writing Skills for Kids

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