Writing an Effective Paragraph
A paragraph is a group of sentences dealing with one topic or idea. It begins with a topic sentence to which all the supporting sentences that follow directly relate. The topic sentence indicates the main idea and the method the writer will use to develop the paragraph. The stronger the support presented in the paragraph for the topic statement, the better the paragraph. The final sentence should serve as a conclusion.
The following paragraph, “The Little Big Horn,” serves as a model. Look at the following guidelines and how they are used in the example paragraph.
• Capitalize proper nouns.
• Use a capital letter for the first word of every sentence.
• Indent the first line of every paragraph.
• Use appropriate punctuation throughout. After every period or comma leave one space.
• Write a good topic statement at the beginning of the paragraph.
• Be sure that all information that follows relates to the thesis statement.
• Provide good supporting details.
• Write one to two sentences at the end as a short conclusion that lets your readers know that you have nothing more to say.
Writing Prompt: Write a paragraph describing the Battle of Little Big Horn.
The Battle of Little Big Horn was a great American tragedy. On June 26, 1876, General George Armstrong Custer and his soldiers were trespassing on Sioux Indian land in Montana, searching for gold. They wanted to find out how many Indians were living in a nearby village. At first they saw only a few on that quiet summer day. Suddenly, thousands circled the Rosebud Ridge and Wolf Mountain area. The Indians surrounded the 250 American soldiers, who saw no immediate reinforcements approaching. The brave soldiers fought off the Indians for three hours, but the Indians’ superior numbers overwhelmed them. The Indians massacred all of them. History recalls the battle more for the mystery surrounding it than for the loss of 250 American...