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5-Paragraph Essay: Step 4: Introduction Paragraph

You Need an Introduction Paragraph

Congratulations, here is how to grow your thesis into a introduction paragraph.



The order of the introduction paragraph is I H E T (I Hate Eating Tomatoes=Introduction: Hook, Elaborate, Thesis)

Write this on your scratch paper:

Hook:
Elaborate:
Thesis:


Add Thesis


1 sentence.
You already have your thesis, use the same one from the last section:

Hook:
Elaboration:
Thesis:
Abe Lincoln is a special person to study.

Add Elaboration


1-3 sentences.

Now remember how essays are written backwards? Elaborate next.

What is elaboration?

It's a description of your topic category. Don't start your elaboration talking about your specific topic, but talk about the category it belongs to. After that, use some specific details about your particular topic.

Start with the category, and then go to the specific.

So what category does your topic belong to?

Topic: Abe Lincoln
Category: Presidents

Topic: Being a 16 year old dad
Category: Teen Parenting

Topic: Getting expelled from 7th grade
Category: The general student expulsion experience.

Topic: Visiting Mexico
Category: Visiting Different Countries

What does it look like when its written?


If your topic is visiting Mexico.
Elaborate: Every country is different.There is a city in Mexico called Tiajuana. This is the city where my family is from, and it is very close to the American border.

If your topic is getting expelled from school:
Elaborate: Students can be expelled from school for certain situations such as bringing a knife to school. To experience expulsion can be challenging for students.

If your topic is becoming a father:
Elaborate: When teenagers become parents there are many challenges, such as completing school and caring for a baby at the same time. Many father's give up under the pressure, but the best fathers get stronger and take care of their family.

In this essay, the topic is Abe Lincoln, so I will give these examples about him:

Elaborate 1: In America, there were many presidents, but there is only one who stands out from all the rest. Abraham Lincoln saved America from a Great Civil War.
Elaborate 2: During war, everyone in America looks to the President to help. During the Civil War, there was an important president who especially had a significant impact upon the future of America. Abraham Lincoln helped end this war and save America.
Elaborate 3: The Presidents of America are important people to know about. In school, there was always one President I loved to hear about the most.

Bad Elaboration 1: He is a great president. (Doesn't move from general to specific).
Bad Elaboration 2: During the civil war, he did something to set people free. (Doesn't flow well).
Bad Elaboration 3: In school I studied Abe Lincoln. (Too simple).

Pick one of the good Examples for your introduction paragraph:

Hook:
Elaborate: In America, there were many presidents, but there is only one who stands out from all the rest. Abraham Lincoln saved america from a Great Civil War.
Thesis: Abe Lincoln is a special person to study.

Add Hook


1-2 sentences.
Last, put your hook in there. Do you know what a hook does? They open up the reader's mind to your thesis. A good way to do that is by asking a question.

Good hook 1: Who is a special person to study?
Good hook 2: Who is my favorite person to study?
Good hook 3: What would America be like if we still had black slaves?

Bad hook 1: Who did I pick? (unclear).
Bad hook 2: Is Abraham Lincoln a president? (the thesis does not answer this).
Bad hook 3: Where is America? (unrelated and off-topic).

So now we have :

Hook: Who is a special person to study?
Elaborate: In America, there were many presidents, but there is only one who stands out from all the rest. Abraham Lincoln saved america during the Great Civil War.
Thesis: Abe Lincoln is a special person to study.

Write your Introduction Paragraph


Copy from your scratch paper and write out your intro paragraph frontwards. It goes Hook. Example. Thesis.

This is how you put it together:

Hook: Who is a special person to study? Elaborate: In America, there were many presidents, but there is only one who stands out from all the rest. Abraham Lincoln saved america during the Great Civil War. Thesis: Abe Lincoln is a special person to study.

So this is what your essay will look like so far on your new sheet of paper:

Who is a special person to study? In America, there were many presidents, but there is only one who stands out from all the rest. Abraham Lincoln saved america during the Great Civil War. Abe Lincoln is a special person to study.

Good Job! Now go to step 5 to write body paragraphs, or else go back to the 5-paragraph essay overview.

Intro Paragraph Exemplar

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