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paragraph

section of text focused on a single idea

main idea

the overall point of a paragraph

topic sentence

the sentence in which a paragraph's main idea is stated

supporting sentences

contain the details that prove, explain, or elaborate a paragraph's main idea

sensory details

what we experience through the senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste, smell

facts

information that can be proven true by direct observation or by checking a reliable reference source

examples

typical instances of an idea

unity

all of the paragraphs & sentences relate to the central focus or main idea

coherence

the supporting details are connected and arranged so that the ideas logically and clearly flow

organizational structure

a way that the writer has organized his or her ideas; the most common are chronological, spatial, order of importance

chronological order

organizational structure in which details are arranged in order that they occur in time

spatial order

organizational structure in which the writer arranges the supporting details according to their location or space

order of importance

organizational structure of least to most or most to least; often used in persuasive writing

transitional words

a writer uses these to create coherence; categories include comparing and contrasting, showing cause and effect, showing time, showing place; showing support

descriptive

paragraph in which the writer describes a scene or object

narrative

paragraph in which the writer tells a story or explains a sequence of events

expository

paragraph in which the writer provides information in the form of facts, details, examples, definitions, answers

persuasive

paragraph in which the writer attempts to convince readers to believe and/or do something

essay

contains an introduction, body, and concluding paragraphs

introduction

the first paragraph of an essay where a thesis should be found

body

the paragraphs of an essay in between the introduction and conclusion in which the writer presents the main supportive, concrete details to support the thesis

conclusion

the last paragraph of an essay in which the writer ties together the supporting ideas and gives the readers a sense that the writing is complete

thesis

the main idea statement in an essay's introductory paragraph

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