Five Paragraph EssayPyramid Introductory Paragraph The Introductory Paragraph begins with the Thesis Statement (can also be used last…). The Thesis is a general statement that directly answers the Call of the Question (prompt). The Thesis is supported by (usually) three sub-thesis points that result from asking of the Thesis Statement: How?Why? Because? Basic information about the book, name of author, and central characters (if applicable) should be included in the introductory paragraph.
Body Paragraphs… • II. Body Paragraph #1 starts with your first sub-thesis point, generally your first reason in support or defense of your thesis statement. This is the topic sentence for the paragraph. Next, explain or define what you mean in the topic sentence, so that the reader gains insight into what you mean. The rest of this paragraph will provide examples and illustration of this topic sentence…using direct text references. • Topic Sentence (Sub-Thesis Point) • Explanation/Definition • Examples/Illustration • Transition
Clincher/Transition Sentences • Clincher/Transition sentence: The last sentence of each body paragraph should be a clincher for the paragraph. (To form a clincher, include two or three key words from the topic sentence and restate the essential idea of the topic sentence.) As you get more confident in writing essays, you may also use your clincher sentence to lead into the next paragraph somehow.
Body Paragraphs • III. Body Paragraph #2 states the second sub-thesis in support of the thesis, and develops that point throughout the paragraph, following the format in Body Paragraph #1. • IV. Body Paragraph #3 states the third sub-thesis in support of the thesis statement and develops that point throughout the paragraph. You may want to save this paragraph for your strongest sub-thesis point…as a way of finishing as strongly as you can.
Concluding Paragraph • V. This final Concluding Paragraph begins with a restatement of your thesis. You need not use such words as "in conclusion" since your reader will recognize the end of your essay from the restatement of your thesis. This paragraph is in some ways an inversion of your opening, introductory paragraph. Then make sure you answer the "so what?" question in this paragraph. Why is your thesis important? What relevance does it have to the life and world of your reader? Try to conclude with force and power and some idea of why your point is important or compelling. • Note: Do not use “I” or “you” in your academic essay, unless embedded in a direct quote…