Writing Effective Opening And Closing Paragraphs


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Writing Effective Opening And Closing Paragraphs

  1. 1. Kristen Sargent English Comp 1102 April 30, 2009
  2. 2. Opening Paragraph is your introduction. Its  where you introduce your topic of writing to your audience.  Your introduction must be effective in order to grab the readers attention and set the tone of the paper; it is like making a first impression. Closing paragraphs are for summarizing your  ideas and reiterating your purpose for writing.  Your conclusion is important because it is the last thing the reader reads; you always want to end on a positive note.
  3. 3. “A Hook”- grabber statement  A thesis statement  “The Hook is a 20 second window of opportunity  wherein marketers gain your attention” – this also applies to writing! Ways to accomplish this…  1.Begin with a broad general statement 2.Use a question or series of thought provoking questions 3.Use quotations 4.Use an anecdote- a story or event with a moral 5.Use statistics 6.Use opposite of your topic- start by stating the opposing views opinion Quotations and ideas from Johnie H. Scott – see works cited page.
  4. 4.  Thesis statement: is a single sentence that states the main points you will be covering in the essay. Example: “Second life has blurred the line  between reality and fiction, provided users with an escape from the real world, and is creating an energy crisis.” IN THE ABOVE, three points are clearly made about the  topic, Second Life, to let the reader know what they are about to read further into.
  5. 5. Signal the end of the paper   Reiterate your thesis statement  What you may have learned  “The Big Picture” Transitional words or phrases should be used to signal your  reader that you are ending your paper. Your thesis should be restated in a way that summarizes  your expanded ideas in the previous paragraphs. Another good idea is to tell what you learned; what did  you get or accomplish from your research? “Explain why the content matters in terms of the “Big  Picture.”” In other words, why is the content of your essay important to read? Speculate about the Future. Quotations and ideas from “Closing Paragraphs” – see works cited page.
  6. 6. DO NOT start your paper with the main purpose of  your writing! “Good writers know that one of the most serious errors that can be made is by opening up right away with the main purpose of the writing.” *begin with a broad, general statement and then narrow it down to your thesis. Beginning with, “In this paper I am going to write  about…” or anything along those lines is a huge NO, NO!! In your thesis, Don’t be too broad or specific.  *example of too broad, “Civil War was a major turning point in American race relations.” *Too specific: if you’re too specific and give too many details the reader may stop reading. Make the reader curious to read more. Quotations and examples from Johnie H. Scott – see works cited page.
  7. 7. DON’T BE REPETIVTIVE!! This is probably the  most common mistake in concluding paragraphs. It can be difficult not to repeat yourself because you are restating your thesis, but you’re not rewriting your thesis, just summarizing the ideas previously discussed. *Suggestion: “Address the implications of the essays central claim”; “ask a rhetorical question” that will lead the reader into a further thought process. Quotations from Linda Ferreira-Buckley – see works cited page.
  8. 8. “Closing Paragraphs.” Writing Studio: Duke University. 29 April 2009. http://uwp.duke.edu/wstudio/documents/closin g_paragraphs.pdf. Ferreire-Buckley, Linda. “Teaching students tp write effective opening and closing paragraphs.” Writing Across the Curriculum. 29 April 2009. http://utexas.edu/cola/progs/wac/highschool/h sopenpara/. Scott, Johnie H. “Attention Grabbers: opening and closing Gambits for Writing.” Attention Grabbers. 29 April 2009. http://www.csun.edu/~hcpas003/essaygambits. html.