Definition: a paragraph is a group of sentences that tell one idea.
Indent the first word in a paragraph (start the first word of the paragraph a little to the right of the left-hand margin.
Start a paragraph with a topic sentence, which states the main idea of that paragraph.
Any time you begin writing about a new idea, begin a new paragraph.
Paragraphs answer questions about a certain topic.
Example Paragraphs (Sample story):
(title of paper)
(indent) → Skiing is a sport enjoyed by many people. One kind of skiing is called downhill skiing. Skiers ride up a ski mountain on a chairlift or gondola. Then they ski down the mountain on ski runs and start over again on a chairlift.
(new idea) → Another type of skiing is called cross-country skiing. Skiers begin skiing on flat ground and continue gliding their skis through the backcountry. They don't need a chairlift to take them up a mountain. They stay on a trail or make their own trail in the snow.
Application exercise: let students write a paragraph describing their favorite animal. They can use 3-5 sentences in their paragraph. Make sure the sentences stay on the subject of their topic sentence.
Application exercise 2: have students write a research paper on their favorite animal. Use various grade-level resources. They need 3 - 5 paragraphs in their paper, each paragraph having a different topic.
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