CHAPTER FOUR THE ART OF PARAGRAPHING PARAGRAPHING

This is the act of arranging ideas in an essay or letter in a way that makes meaning clear. Usually ideas in any piece of writing are arranged serially, sequentially or orderly; so that each idea is contained in its own paragraph. The use of paragraph helps one reader to follow ones argument and also make sure that the writer has planned what to write by grouping ideas under related points and ensuring that those points follow on logically. Where an essay is one concentrated piece, it will be difficult for the reader to follow the trend of the writer’s thought.

WHAT THEN IS A PARAGRAPH?
A paragraph is a group or collections of sentences dealing with common issue. It is a basic unit through which a writer presents his main ideas. The main idea in a paragraph is usually contained in the topic sentence while other sentences contained in the paragraph go to elucidate it. Immediately an idea is exhausted in one paragraph, another one should be started. However, if the idea is not exhausted, an appropriate connective or transitional marker should be used to extend the idea into another paragraph. It is important to note that each paragraph in an essay has different functions, but they all add information, explanation, and illustration to the central theme until the theme is fully developed. The paragraph usually has a beginning, middle and end. Sometimes, the topic sentence is placed at the initial position while at other times, it occupies either the end or middle position. A paragraph which has its topic sentence at the initial position has an inductive pattern of arrangement. On the other hand, the paragraph that has its topic sentence at the end position employs a deductive approach.

LENGTH OF A PARAGRAPH
Although it is believed that length or appearance is not a factor in determining whether a section in a paper is a paragraph or not, it is proper that a paragraph should contain minimum of five sentences. This is because when a paragraph is too short, it hinders the comprehension of the main idea. The same applies to a lengthy paragraph. A long paragraph may inhibit the reader from locating the main idea in the passage.

A paragraph which has its topic sentence at the initial position has an inductive pattern of arrangement. middle and end. an appropriate connective or transitional marker should be used to extend the idea into another paragraph. but they all add information. This is because when a paragraph is too short. The main idea in a paragraph is usually contained in the topic sentence while other sentences contained in the paragraph go to elucidate it. However. it hinders the comprehension of the main idea.CHAPTER FOUR THE ART OF PARAGRAPHING PARAGRAPHING This is the act of arranging ideas in an essay or letter in a way that makes meaning clear. The same applies to a lengthy paragraph. the paragraph that has its topic sentence at the end position employs a deductive approach. The use of paragraph helps one reader to follow ones argument and also make sure that the writer has planned what to write by grouping ideas under related points and ensuring that those points follow on logically. it occupies either the end or middle position. Sometimes. On the other hand. Where an essay is one concentrated piece. the topic sentence is placed at the initial position while at other times. Usually ideas in any piece of writing are arranged serially. another one should be started. if the idea is not exhausted. The paragraph usually has a beginning. It is important to note that each paragraph in an essay has different functions. Immediately an idea is exhausted in one paragraph. sequentially or orderly. A long paragraph may inhibit the reader from locating the main idea in the passage. explanation. WHAT THEN IS A PARAGRAPH? A paragraph is a group or collections of sentences dealing with common issue. it is proper that a paragraph should contain minimum of five sentences. so that each idea is contained in its own paragraph. . LENGTH OF A PARAGRAPH Although it is believed that length or appearance is not a factor in determining whether a section in a paper is a paragraph or not. it will be difficult for the reader to follow the trend of the writer’s thought. It is a basic unit through which a writer presents his main ideas. and illustration to the central theme until the theme is fully developed.

A paragraph should not begin with one idea and end with another one . A . In other words. so that ideas do not hang loosely. logical bridges. it is the trait that makes a paragraph easily understandable.QUALITIES OF A PARAGRAPH A good paragraph will contain the following: UNITY A paragraph should contain only one main point. and verbal bridges can be made. ATTAINING COHERENCE IN A PARAGRAPH As was said earlier in this section. is a major way to adequately develop a paragraph. It is the orderly relationship of sentences in a paragraph. To achieve coherence. This will make the entire passage interesting to read. Also. complex. EMPHASIS This is a situation where the most important sentence in a paragraph is placed at the most emphatic position. Analogies are useful to illustrate ideas in your writing. compound. but you must keep yourself from typing together two kinds of experiences that aren’t logically related. To create coherence. COHERENCE This is the arrangement of the writer’s thought in a clear and logical manner. No unrelated sentence should be introduced into the paragraph. Every sentence in the paragraph must be related. ADEQUATE DEVELOPMENT Every idea contained in the paragraph should be adequately explained and supported through evidence and details that work together to explain the overall theme of the paper. VARIETY There should be variety in the sentence structures contained in the paragraph. this is what is referred to as unity. There should be an alternation of simple. Good examples and appropriate illustrations made. transitional elements should be used to link up different paragraphs. compound complex and multiple sentences. appropriate pronouns should be used to refer to antecedent nouns. and events in the paragraph should be related in the order of their occurrence and importance. coherence is the arrangement of a writer’s thought in a clear and logical manner. therefore. so that ideas do not hang loosely. any sentence that is not related to the main topic should be extracted or expunged from the paragraph.g. LOGICAL BRIDGES This occurs when the same idea is carried over from sentence to sentence E. The most emphatic positions are the beginning and the end.

g. Transitional markers are words that link one paragraph to another. The linkage is done in a way that ideas flow logically from one paragraph to the other. and thus. Also. Transition word can be used to link ideas from different sentences. E. a man who could be so critical. VERBAL BRIDGES To create verbal bridges. we can construct successive sentences in parallel form. (ii) He missed the lady he needed to see. (i) Singing and dancing are her daily delight.workable analogy connects experiences that are covered by the same laws of caution (excerpt from Questions and Rhetoric and usage). Below are examples of transitional markers and the thought they convey: ILLUSTRATION For example For instance EXTENDING IDEA FROM ONE PARAGRAPH TO ANOTHER In addition Furthermore Also In the same vein Equally important Again Moreover Explaining Consequences As A Result . who would have transformed his life appreciably. the following can be done: (i) Key words can be repeated in several sentences (ii) (iii) (iv) Synonymous words can be repeated in several sentences Pronouns can refer to nouns in previous sentences. while she disdains day dreaming and wishful thinking. enhance the comprehension of the passage. TRANSITIONAL MARKERS Another way to attain coherence in paragraph is through the use of transitional markers. would never appreciate the beauty of life.

To depict the beginning of the paragraph therefore. heading.- Consequently Following this Therefore Thus Hence Showing differences On The Other Hand On The Contrary From a Different Perspective However Sequence First Second Third Etc Last Summarizing To Sum Up In Conclusion On The Whole Finally Emphasis Above All Basically Fundamentally Indeed TYPES OF PARAGRAPH The paragraph is usually displayed in a way to attract the attention of the reader. blocking. hanging. The first word of the paragraph is set back from the left hand margin. different styles are employed. and subsidiary. In this type of . indentation. namely. THE INDENTED PARAGRAPH This is the commonest type of paragraph found in formal and informal situations.

it is necessary to give heading to the different issues raised. and minutes of meeting which are usually lengthy because of the different issues they contain. This type of paragraph is what is in vogue now because of its aesthetic nature. Indentation shows the beginning of any new paragraph and the end. Now that computer is in vogue. the same principles apply. five spaces are set back for pica type-writers. SUBSIDIARY PARAGRAPH The subsidiary paragraph which is also called inset is derived from the main paragraph. THE BLOCK PARAGRAPH In this type of paragraph. they shold be underscored to differentiate them from the main paragraph. the subsequent lines being indented. The purpose of this type of paragraph is to make the first few words prominent. For instance. Once a writer decides on the controlling idea. the different topics contained in them are numbered. as this will make reading and comprehension easy. blank. the next is the choice of information that will help to support and perpetuate the idea through out the entire paper. THE HANGING PARAGRAPH This is a reversal of the indented paragraph. if one is using the block style for the main heading. What is the main point the writer is trying to convey to his audience? The controlling idea is like a seed through which the piece of writing and the ideas it contains will grow. namely: 1. Five steps have been identified in the development of paragraphs. Sometimes. The difference between one paragraph and the other is however shown by leaving a typing line. but it is much more convenient to give them headings. It is proper to adopt different forms for the main and subsidiary paragraphs. the subsidiary could be indented.writing. each line including the first begins at the same vertical position. The first word of the paragraph commences at the left hand margin. Where small ones are used. PARAGRAPH DEVELOPMENT The development of a paragraph is usually preceded by a clear understanding of what the controlling idea of the piece of writing is all about. Controlling idea . THE HEADED PARAGRAPH For documents such as reports. These paragraph headings may be typed in either capital letters or small letters.

as current students. All paragraphs should consist of one central idea. will improve your performance and position as future participants in the working world. The deadlines that students encounter in classroom may be different in content when compared to the deadlines of the workforce but the importance of meeting those deadlines is the same. so too. Paragraph development is an organic process that makes intricate links between various ideas. the student breaks her contract with the university and the teacher ss This often leaves the teacher with no recourse than to fail the student and leaves the university with no other recourse than to terminate the student’s credit for the course. That contract requires that students complete the assignments and objectives set forth by the course’s instructor in a specified time to receive a grade and credit for the course. 3. EXAMPLES For example. These links create one single idea and run throughout the entire paper. When a student fails to complete those assignments by the deadline. in the classroom. does that student risk termination in the workforce. the explanation should be explained.2. EXPLANATION OF CONTROLLING IDEA Though the workforce may not assign homework to its workers in the traditional sense. CONTROLLING IDEA Learning how to turn in home work assignments on time is one of the invaluable skills that college students can take with them into the working world. . Explanation of controlling idea Example Explanation of example Completion of paragraph’s idea Below is an except containing the five steps to paragraph development. 4. the idea should have a discussion on how it works. 5. failure to meet deadlines in both the classroom and the workforce can mean instants termination. In fact. just as a student risks termination in the classroom if he/her fails to meet the deadlines for a homework assignment. COMPLETION OF PARAGRAPH IDEA Developing good habits of turning in assignments in class now. students form a contract with the teacher and the university when they enroll in a class. many of the objectives and jobs that need to be completed require that employees work with deadlines. and the final idea should be reiterated while preparing the reader for the development to come. Accordingly.

more coherent. and most importantly. . better developed. Apart from these steps that have been identified. other patterns of paragraph developments that can be used are: (i) (ii) (iii) (iv) (v) (vi) (vii) Description Definition Comparison and Contrast Analogy Illustration Cause and effect Evaluation of causes and reasons.Awareness and utilization of all of these components will help to make a writer’s paragraph more unified.