Wondering how to write a five paragraph essay? This is not surprising, as this is probably the most common type of writing assignment that a student has to write both in high school and college. However, it doesn’t mean that writing a five paragraph essay is an extremely easy task. A good essay should be unique and provide your unique perspective. Besides, given that it’s only five paragraphs long, you should be able to express your thoughts concisely.
The five-paragraph format implies writing one introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Each part of the five paragraph essay is important, and it’s especially true when it comes to an introduction. The introduction is the first thing that your readers see so you must make sure that it’s not only informative and well-written but also impressive enough.
Every section of the essay has its unique challenges and requires you to follow some rules. It may seem like all these rules make essay writing difficult, but the truth is that you just need to know what to expect from such a task. If you prepare for the essay writing process, you’ll be able to avoid a lot of stress and produce a good paper that meets all the necessary requirements.
Here's How to Write a Five Paragraph Essay: Key Elements
📌 The Introduction & Thesis Statement
In the first paragraph, you should introduce the topic of your essay to your reader. However, this is not the only purpose of this paragraph. You should also use the introduction to make people want to read the whole essay so you should immediately grab your reader’s attention with a good hook. After this, you should set the direction for the rest of the essay. Once you’ve presented an attention-grabbing hook, you should describe the main idea of your essay in one concise sentence.
The introduction should present your thesis statement that summarizes your key idea and answers the question from your prompt. The thesis statement should serve as the backbone of your essay. After the thesis statement, describe the three arguments that support the thesis, starting from the least important argument followed by more important ones. In the introduction, you only need to describe these points in a few brief sentences so that you can consider them in more detail in the main body.
📌 The Body
As we’ve already mentioned above, the introduction should be one paragraph long. The following section is the main part of your essay, and it’s also the longest part. Here, you should address the three supporting arguments (three main points), and you have one paragraph for each one of them. In each body paragraph, you should state your argument and then provide evidence that supports or illustrates it. You can use quotes, statistics, facts, and examples.
The structure of each body paragraph mimics the structure of the entire essay. The first sentence should briefly summarize a key point. After this, you should consider this point in more detail and provide supporting evidence. You should also make a transition to the next key point and the next paragraph. This way, you’ll ensure a consistent flow of thought. The next two body paragraphs have the same structure.
Briefly introducing your main points in the introduction enables you to establish the logical structure of the entire essay so if you don’t know what you should write next, just check your introduction. However, the best solution is to write a proper outline. This way, you can also note what evidence you will present to support each key point and sort the pieces of evidence by importance.
📌 The Conclusion
The concluding paragraph should summarize the entire essay. Just like the introduction, this section should only be one paragraph long, and this is the reason why the conclusion can be quite difficult to write. Not only should you summarize your key points, but you should also make your conclusion meaningful so that you’ll leave your readers with something to think about.
Connect different arguments and rewrite your thesis statement. Don’t present the thesis statement in the same way you’ve done it in the introduction. Reword it and consider it in the context of the arguments and facts that you’ve included in the main body. Explain how each argument supports the thesis statement. You shouldn’t provide any new information in this section. Instead, just reflect on the facts and examples that you’ve already mentioned. At the very end of your 5 paragraph essay, you may ask a rhetorical question or make a suggestion on what needs to be done regarding the subject of the essay.
Although the conclusion is the last section of your essay, it doesn’t mean that you should write it last. Many students write the body and conclusion first and then write the introduction. The reason is that it will be much easier for you to summarize your arguments and evidence once the main body is finished. We also recommend that you don’t submit your essay immediately. Take your time and proofread it to make sure that grammar mistakes and punctuation inconsistencies won’t ruin the impression of your work.
A five-paragraph essay is the most common type of writing assignment among students. Although five-paragraph essays are very popular, it doesn’t mean that such a writing task is simple, because a typical essay is 500-800 words long. Many students realize that the short format makes the essay writing process more difficult because they need to express their thoughts clearly and concisely. To write an impressive creative essay, you should present your ideas in a logically structured way, making your essay easy to read and comprehend.
The main secret of creating a successful five-paragraph essay is preparation. If you approach the writing process unprepared, you may spend a lot of time rewriting and editing your drafts, which is definitely a bad solution. We recommend that you write a clear outline first and plan the structure of your essay in detail. Think of what arguments you’re going to present and what evidence you will use to support your arguments.
Writing an outline will help you not only create a well-structured essay but also save a lot of time. Quite often, students need to write five-paragraph essays as a part of various tests, and in this case, timing is crucial. No matter how little time you have, you should provide a complete essay that has the introduction, body, and conclusion. People who evaluate students’ essays expect to see all three sections so a complete essay will always get a better grade than an incomplete one. Last but not least, don't forget to make the last sentence a powerful one!