Paragraph Prompts

Topic Sentence

Look carefully at the picture for a couple minutes. What is the gestalt? Decide who or what is the subject (topic) of the picture and what is the subject doing (predicate)? Write one complete sentence on the top of your T-chart that states the gestalt of the picture.

Key Details

Think of key detail ideas to support the topic sentence. Add them to the first column on your T-chart. Remember: the key details should tell more about your topic sentence. They don't have to be complete sentences yet.

Transition Words

Add transition words to the front of your key details on your T-chart. The transition words help the reader move through and understand your paragraph.

Add "E"s (Optional)

To make your paragraph more interesting, add one to three explanations, examples, extra information, etc. to support each key detail. Put those in the second column next to your key details. (3rd grade and above)

Concluding Sentence

Read your topic sentence again. Think of another way to say it. Or, you could write a call to action for your reader. Make your final sentence satisfying to your reader. Write it on the bottom of your T-chart.

Write Your Paragraph

Carefully write your paragraph. Start with the topic sentence; don't forget to indent! Then turn each key detail into a sentence beginning with its transition word. Include your "E"s if you have them. Finish with your concluding sentence.
PRO TIP: See if you can write sentences without using "is", "are", "was", or "were"!

Highlight It (Optional)

To see the structure of your paragraph, you might want to highlight the topic sentence and key details. It should look something like this.

Check Your Work

Carefully read your paragraph and make sure you included everything from your T-chart. Make sure you used careful spelling so your readers can understand. Check your paragraph against the Success Criteria.