The Five Paragraph Essay

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Getting Started

Writing the Essay

Editing, Revising
and Evaluating

Getting Started Means Getting Organized

     Getting organized is a vital part of the writing process which requires critical thinking and lots of practice. It is important to first analyze the information that you have to understand what is being asked in the assignment. Next, you need to think about the information that you know about the subject and decide what is relevant to the topic. Then you must decide which information you will use and where it will be most effective. These are the very basic steps.

     The first step is to analyze the assignment and determine what is being required. If it is written, you are lucky. You can use a highlighter to note the important words that help define the topic and aid in setting up the organizational plan. For example, let's assume that you have been given this writing prompt:

Everyone has been given a present that was really memorable. It could have been for an important occasion or just for no reason at all. Think about one that you received. Tell us about a present you were given and why it was memorable. Be sure to include the reason it was given, a description of it, and how you felt when you got it.

     This tells us you are to write a narrative essay because you are "telling us about a present you were given," the subject is a memorable present, and the three main subtopics required are:

  •  the reason it was given,
  •  a description of it,
  •  and how you felt when you received it.

     If the directions were given orally, it does pay to stop and jot down the important words on your planner so that you do not skip any important points.

     Once you know and understand the scope of the assignment, you need to plan well and quickly. The better the planning, the better the essay.

         Now that organization is no problem, let's get to writing the essay.

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How to Write the Essay   /  Editing, Revising, and Evaluating
Expository and Prompts  /  Narrative and Prompts
Persuasive and Prompts  /  Varied Prompts
Tips and Techniques   /