Ready to dig into some nuts-and-bolts of essay writing? Let’s talk about how to help our middle school and high school students write strong intro. paragraphs. Note: This format works great when teaching literary analysis, argument, and research essays, but narratives are a whole different story. (Heh…see what I did there?)

Introductory paragraph slides and handout (free):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/How-to-Write-an-Introductory-Paragraph-FREE-Slides-Handout-Model-Intro-3439047

How to teach theme materials (free):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/How-to-Teach-Theme-Mini-Lecture-Slides-Literary-Analysis-Theme-CCSS-3427397

Brainstorming organizers (free):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Brainstorming-Organizers-FREE-Handouts-Examples-to-Help-Teen-Writers-CCSS-3405571

Hooks (paid):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hook-the-Reader-with-Best-Launch-for-an-Introductory-Paragraph-466151

“The Scarlet Ibis” lesson materials (paid):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Scarlet-Ibis-James-Hurst-3-day-lesson-lit-analysis-writing-tasks-CCSS-683570

“Thank You, Ma’am” lesson materials (paid):
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Thank-You-Maam-Langston-Hughes-story-literary-analysis-writing-task-CCSS-664193

Teach on, everyone!

Join the conversation! 12 Comments

  1. hi laura! would you be able to make a video or write a blog post on how to teach students to write synthesis essays? thanks! 🙂

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  2. Cannot thank you for this lesson enough…this is just what I needed for this week…the opening paragraphs of my 8th graders are not so hot! You just made my life easier and I can’t thank you enough…to thank you I’m buying your lesson on Hooks – as a treat to myself!

    Hugs and thanks!

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  3. Great suggestion, Kelsi! Not sure when I’ll be able to get to this, but I just added it to my idea notebook. Stay tuned! 🙂

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  4. My pleasure, MsMundy! And thanks for your purchase; it’ll cover my cup of coffee while I script out the next video. 😉

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  5. Awesome stuff! Do you have specific Hook lessons? I would love to see examples of metaphors, analogies, etc. that you give to your kids. We struggle with this sooooo much!
    #hookstrugglesarereal

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  6. Sure, Sara. I hear ya! I don’t do a full lesson on hooks, but I do present this mini-lecture and give my students a handout that models the options I prefer. You can find those materials here: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hook-the-Reader-with-Best-Launch-for-an-Introductory-Paragraph-466151

    Hope this helps! 🙂

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  7. I love all of your materials. Will you be creating a post on conclusion paragraphs too? That would be awesome! Thank you! 🙂

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  8. Thanks, Emily! Yes, I’m a little behind with everything, but I hope to build this next video/support materials and have it all uploaded late next week. Stay tuned! 🙂

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  9. I big puffy heart EVERYTHING you put together, Laura! I love that you film in your car. It cracks me up thinking about passersby meandering along with no idea that you’re just hanging out, generating quality content for your fellow teachers. 🙂 Although I am no longer a teacher in a school setting (and never a high school teacher), your materials have prepared my homeschooled kids very well for high school. Thanks for rocking!

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  10. Thanks, JulieAnn! I definitely get some funny looks from the other parents in the after school pick-up line, but those 15 minutes before my kid gets out of school are my best quiet, focused minutes of the day. I know it’s not as fancy as some of the home offices I see in other folks’ videos, but our house is small and pretty much all of my online work (including answering you right now) is done at the kitchen table while my husband’s watching college football, our daughter is walking around memorizing her lines for the school play (A Midsummer Night’s Dream – it’s been all Shakespeare all the time around here lately), and the dog is barking at…nothing. Yeah, total chaos. LOVE knowing that the video content is useful and that you don’t mind hanging out in my Hyundai. If you keep watching, I’ll keep filming. 😀

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  11. Thank you so much! I used your explanation of an effective introduction paragraph’s organization in my 7th grade English class this week. My students are writing a paired-text literary analysis essay in which they use evidence to show how a theme statement is shared by and supported in both Lois Lowry’s The Giver and in a poem of their choice.

    Any chance you might do one of these videos and share resources for how to write a conclusion paragraph in a literary analysis essay?

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  12. Janice, your timing couldn’t be better! I just finished filming the concluding paragraph support video and will edit it all together tonight. Look for the conclusion paragraph resources to be uploaded Saturday morning (fingers-crossed!) or Sunday, at the latest. 😀

    Like

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high school English, middle school, Uncategorized, writing

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