8th Grade: To Help with Your Essay

Posted: February 9, 2016 in Home

How to Write a Body Paragraph in a Five-Paragraph Essay

1). Make a claim. The claim derives from your thesis statement, and it will serve as the main idea of your paragraph. Note: each of your paragraphs should have only one main idea. That’s why it’s called a main idea!

2). Expand upon that claim. Say more about your claim. At this point, you can stress its importance in the text. Try to establish its relevance to your argument.

3). Provide textual evidence to support your claim. Remember our fictional court case: without evidence, it’s “case dismissed!” We don’t have a case without evidence, and an argument without facts is merely an opinion. Introduce the quote and work it into your own words. Don’t just stick it in your paragraph by itself!

4). Analyze that evidence in light of your claim in order to expand upon it. Focus on specific words the author uses to say more about your argument. Explore connotation and denotation, as well as figurative language. Explain how the passage reveals the same concern in other parts of the text.

5). Conclude the paragraph by showing readers that they now know more about your claim than they did at the beginning of the paragraph. Therefore, you must not simply repeat your topic sentence.

A Paragraph’s Format:

Claim

Expand the claim

Provide textual evidence

Analyze textual evidence

Conclude

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