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How to Perfect A 5-Paragraph Essay Template

How to Perfect A 5-Paragraph Essay Template

Writing a 5-paragraph essay seems simple but might actually be frustrating when you don’t know how to go about it. Writing this 5-paragraph essay might be difficult for many students, especially those in the college or high school.

If you are getting ready to be admitted into high school or college, then you should be fully prepared for your standardized tests. This is especially because there is a portion where you have to write a 5-paragraph essay on a given topic. The 5-paragraph essay is considered to be the standard essay writing assignment. It is used in most exams such as TOEFL, IELTS, and the SAT.  If, on the other hand, you are already in high school and getting ready to write your first 5-paragraph academic paper, it might just make you jittery. You don’t have to feel this way, so here are some helpful tips to guide you in writing your paper.

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5-paragraph essay writing is basically a balancing act. You often need to incorporate quotations from other sources, while making sure enough of the paper reflects your own stance to be considered unique.

This type of essay has a very specific outline. It starts with an introduction, goes to body paragraph 1, body paragraph 2, body paragraph 3, and sums things up with a conclusion. Each body paragraph serves a specific purpose and the essay will take the form of a keyhole. This means that it starts out very broad, gets more narrow and finishes out broad. Most 5-paragraph essays are usually between 500 to 800+ words in length. In order to properly get to grips with this essay, you should follow these tips:

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1. Introduce your topic

The introduction – or first paragraph – of your academic paper will give you the opportunity to introduce your paper’s topic to your readers. This happens to be the most important part of your paper and as such, great care should be taken in writing or developing it. The introduction is what sets your academic paper’s tone and, at the same time, gets your readers glued to your work. You should also craft a thesis statement in this paragraph. In one sentence each, write out three points on which your thesis is based.

2. Go into detail

The second, third and fourth paragraphs make up the body of your essay. This is where you go into detail with the facts of your paper, including quotes, statistics, and related examples. The three points you hinted at in the paper’s introduction would form the second, third, and fourth paragraphs. Always make sure to start each paragraph with a topic sentence which is then followed by your argument. The evidence supporting your argument then follows. This step is repeated for the three paragraphs.

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3. Summarize 

In the last and fifth paragraph of your essay, you will need to carefully summarize the content of your paper. Your thesis is intelligently restated, making a seamless connection with the rest of the paper as you concisely tell your target readers how each point solidly supports the paper’s thesis. Remember, you should never bring up new idea that has not been discussed in the main body of your paper. If a recommendation towards further research is necessary, you can go ahead and make such recommendation.

Don’t be afraid to get assistance if you’re having a hard time writing your essay or if you don’t fully understand what’s expected of you. You can hire a tutor, or simply form a study group. While writing a 5-paragraph essay may seem initially foreign and difficult to comprehend, you’ll soon find that it’s not nearly as difficult as you may have imagined. With some background knowledge, a grip of the fundamentals, and the willingness to learn, you should have no problem writing your essay and achieving the results that you want.

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Saminu Abass

Content Writer and Blogger

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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