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Paragraph Structure

Writing Paragraphs


Paragraph Structure

Student Considering Paragraph Structure

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Although the following structure is considered ideal it is not always used when writing paragraphs. Nevertheless, it will serve you well, particularly when the paragraph will stand alone.
  1. Topic sentence contains the main idea of the paragraph. When answering a question, don't restate the whole question, but do use some of the key words in the question. The topic sentence is usually the first, second, or last sentence in a paragraph. It is easiest to make it the first sentence.
  2. Explain the topic sentence.
  3. Prove your ideas are true or important with interesting, specific details.
  4. End with a closing sentence that refers to the main idea in the topic sentence. Don't write the same sentence.

Use transitions to show how each sentence is related to the preceding sentence. (Standard transitional words, pronouns, and repetition of words or ideas) Note the italicized transitions below.Question: Why do teens adopt a particular style of dressing?

Teens choose a style of dressing to feel accepted. By wearing a style associated with a particular group, many teenagers feel they belong to that group. For example, when I was in my early teens, I was so shy I didn't have a clue about how to make friends. I did, however, know how to sew very well. Thus, I would be among the first to wear the latest style, whether it was a straight skirt with little flounces at the bottom or a full skirt with yards of fabric gathered at the waist. I would wear popular styles even if it caused arguments with my mother. In fact, I still remember her yelling at me to loosen my belt before school. In spite of her scolding, once I was a block from home, I would tighten my belt back to nineteen inches causing painful, vertical marks around my waist by the end of the day. I didn't mind the discomfort though, for even the most popular girls remarked about my tiny waist, and, although they didn't know my name, their compliments made me feel accepted.

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