Lessons and Activities on Paragraph Structure: A Guide for Teachers

Teaching Paragraph Structure

Enhance and extend your instruction with these teacher-created activities that are engaging and effective. Students' paragraph writing is

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sure to improve as you incorporate the activities and ideas presented here. Activities for general education, ESL and special education are included. However, don't limit your lesson choices to a selected few; these lessons and tips for teaching paragraph structure can be modified with little effort to effectively meet most students' needs in your classroom.

Teaching Students to Structure Paragraphs

Using varied methods for teaching paragraph structure ensures all students with different learning styles understand, retain, and apply the skills taught during your lessons. The ultimate goal in teaching writing is to move students toward independent writing that involves all of the steps in the writing process including developing strong topic sentences and elaborating and discussing selected topics in well structured sentences to form concise paragraphs. The lessons here will assist your efforts in moving students to that point.

The first article includes procedures for teaching students to improve the topic sentences of their paragraphs. The articles that follow include effective methods, ideas and strategies for teaching paragraph structure.

Teaching Tips and Strategies for Teaching Specific Structures

Teaching students to write paragraphs with different structures is presented in this section. Teaching the same topic in several ways ensures you meet the needs of all of your students; with the articles here, that variation is possible. The tips and methods for instruction presented here makes altering instructional approaches easier than you might have thought.

The first two articles address organizing paragraphs in an essay and define the different types of paragraph structures. The articles that follow include specific lessons for developing paragraphs using specific structures such as time order, description, persuasion and classification.

Evaluating and Revising Paragraphs

An important part of teaching paragraph structure is addressing the writing process of evaluating and revising written work. Revising sentence structure and attention to punctuation and word choice all contribute to creating well structured paragraphs.

Use the ideas and strategies in this section to guide students in assessing their own paragraphs and making revisions for improvement. Students will learn to evaluate and revise their own paragraphs with the use of the lessons provided here.

Challenging Paragraph Lessons

Are your students writing strong, well structured paragraphs and showing a decreasing need for guided practice? Challenge these students who independently compose well structured paragraphs. Search the articles in this section for ideas and techniques for improving students' paragraph structure and overall quality of their writing. Activities can be used for small groups of students or for whole group instruction, depending on your students' abilities in structuring paragraphs.

Varying your instructional lessons while challenging the stronger writers in your class is made easy with the ideas presented here. It takes only a little effort to use these lessons in your class, but the rewards are plentiful – your students become better writers!

Teaching Paragraphing to ESL and Special Education Students

Teaching paragraph structure to students needing special instruction is made easy with this section of articles. Search the articles here to find ideas, strategies, and lessons for teaching students with classifications, including ESL, the developmentally disabled and students with other classifications. However, don't limit your choices to this section; be sure to search the other sections for lesson ideas and tips that may fit your students' special needs.

Learning to Write Well

Teaching paragraph structure contributes to skills students use for many years no matter where they go in life. Use this table of contents as a guide for ensuring that your instruction addresses the different paragraph developments students can use when writing, both in and out of the classroom. Teaching students to write lengthier, more complex pieces begins with understanding paragraphs.

References

  • Author's own teaching experience and research