If the 5-paragraph essay were good training for writing college-level academic essays, you wouldn’t hear so much carping from college instructors about the quality of writing from their students. We were 3rd graders, so of course, we didn’t do this.Mature writers need to navigate choices rooted in genuine rhetorical situations. The extent to which we didn’t became apparent next class when Mrs.
If the 5-paragraph essay were good training for writing college-level academic essays, you wouldn’t hear so much carping from college instructors about the quality of writing from their students. We were 3rd graders, so of course, we didn’t do this.Tags: Favorite Place To Get Lost College EssayApu Application EssayTeacher Letter Of Recommendation For College ApplicationHow To Do A Title Page For A Research PaperEssay On World War 2 HomefrontBusiness Operational Plan ExampleWhat Is Machiavelli Overall ThesisBusiness Law Question Papers MbaGood Opening Sentences EssayAssignment Problem In Operational Research
You’ve got to know the rules to break the rules, right? At least not these rules, and the way students learn them.
While a well-done 5-paragraph essay may exhibit some traits that we value in other forms of writing – engaging opening, clear focus/thesis, transitions between ideas, general coherence – the writing of a 5-paragraph essay is primarily approached from a tactical angle, and occurs outside a genuine rhetorical situation (audience/purpose/message).
More troublesome is what the 5-paragraph essay does to the writing process.
The act of writing is primarily treated as a performance meant to impress a teacher or score well on a standardized exam.
Because of this, students write from a list of rules handed down by their teachers, starting with the form itself (five paragraphs: intro, body, body, body, conclusion), and including specifics like the use of “good” transition words, never using “I” or contractions, and even limits on the number of sentences per paragraph or words per sentence.
The result is a Frankenstein’s monster of an “essay,” something that looks vaguely essay-like, but is clearly also not as it lurches and moans across the landscape, frightening the villagers.Understanding the components of a paragraph will help you improve your writing skills and may also help you improve your reading and comprehension.Your paragraphs should have a main idea and information to support the statement.You need to make a statement that you back up with the other sentences in the paragraph.As a basic example, a topic sentence that balances general and specifics might look like this: “Eating well can impact your health.” This top slice of the bread, this topic sentence, informs the reader about what she can expect to hear more about in the upcoming sentences.In most cases, the concluding sentence resembles the topic sentence.For example, your concluding sentence may look like this: “As the research shows, eating a diet rich in whole grains, fruits and vegetables can greatly reduce your risk for health problems.” In looking at the paragraph as a whole, you can see how the “sandwich” forms.They cannot hope to develop unless and until we first undo the damage done.There will be some who want to defend the 5-paragraph essay as “training wheels” for the type of academic writing that will come later.With strong topic, supporting and concluding sentences you can create a filling paragraph that gives the reader all the information she needs to understand the topic.Kate Beck started writing for online publications in 2005.