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5 Paragraph Essay Reimagined: Time for a New Approach

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Are you tired of those 5 paragraph essays? Then don’t write 5 paragraphs. Write 4 sentences.

Writing 4 sentences is not a biggie. Do you agree? It won’t take much time. And only 4 meaningful sentences are a perfect start to your essay. The rest of your essay will grow like a snowball rolling down the mountain. Simply add linking elements and intensifiers to make it work.

Now I’m going to show you how to do it. No magic. No dirty tricks. You can do it yourself.

5 Paragraphs vs. 4 Sentences

Classic 5 paragraph essay A new approach – 4 sentences
  • Introduction (including a thesis statement)
  • Main body paragraph 1
  • Main body paragraph 2
  • Main body paragraph 3
  • Conclusion
  • A thesis statement
  • 1st argument
  • 2nd argument
  • Counterargument

A 5 Paragraph Essay in More Detail

Sorry if you’re hungry right now. But a 5 paragraph essay structure is all about food:

Part: Introduction

Food:

Ice Cream

Comments:

  • An attention hook is the first sentence, capturing readers’ attention. It can be a quote, a rhetoric question or a short anecdote.
  • General info addresses the roots of the question. E.g. The belief that dreams can predict the future has been investigated since times immemorial.
  • A more specific info narrows down the question, making a bridge to your main point. E.g. A new perspective was added to the discussion with the publication of Freud’s ‘Interpretation of Dreams’
  • A thesis statement is a condensed form of the main point you’re going to support and a brief summary of the main arguments. E.g. Even though Freud gave scientific explanation to the phenomenon of dreams, a lot of people believe that they receive predictions at night and make it true through autohypnosis.

Part: “Hamburger” paragraph

Food:

Hamburger

Comments:

  • Every paragraph should start from the topic sentence – the most important sentence, briefly introducing the argument. E.g. The people’s quest for mystery made Freud’s scientific explanation of dreams insufficient.
  • The ‘filling’ of the paragraph usually consists of several sentences, supporting the main point of the paragraph.
  • The concluding sentence usually repeats what has been said in the paragraph and makes a transition to the next paragraph (unless it’s the last one of the body paragraphs). E.g. Most of us make a personal choice, whether to believe in dreams or science and we often combine both.

Example of 4 Sentences

Now let’s take a look what those 4 sentences (a perfect start to a 5 paragraph essay) should look like:

The central element:

  1. A thesis statement
    E.g. Whereas adopting a pet means taking the responsibility, living with an animal makes a person more optimistic, life loving and stress-resistant.
  2. First strong argument
    E.g. Adopting a pet makes a person more optimistic.
  3. Second strong argument
    E.g. Communication with a pet has a number of health benefits and helps their owners resist stress.
  4. Counterargument
    E.g. Even though sometimes caring for pets can be time-consuming, it’s one of the best ways to spend excessive energy.

Example of a 5 Paragraph Essay

And now, let’s extend those 4 sentences to get a well-formatted five paragraph essay.

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened”, Anatole France said. Indeed, the unconditional love of animals make us better people. Even today, when living with animals lost its original practical value (pasturing cattle or guarding homes), most families have pets. According to the findings of the latest studies, furry friends can aid a person’s health and social well-being. Whereas adopting a pet means taking the responsibility, living with an animal makes a person more optimistic, life loving and stress-resistant.

Adopting a pet makes a person more optimistic. Caring for an animal boosts your social activity. Dogs don’t only fetch you balls and Frisbees, they also can bring you a good company, filling your life with pleasant moments and positive emotions. You meet new people at the dog parks, at the vet’s and in the neighborhood. In their presence, owners feel at ease and easily make new acquaintances. Moreover, caring for your pet can be a never-ending topic for conversation. Looking at their cheerful furry friends, people learn to enjoy life like their pets do. An absolute adoration of your pet always waiting for you at home makes you more cheerful and energetic.

Communication with a pet has a number of health benefits and helps their owners resist stress. Owning a pet has proven to decrease blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Rubbing against your legs, purring and sitting on your laps, animals help you relax and forget all your troubles. Due to their sensitivity to smells and body temperatures, animals can detect and help to cure some diseases. For instance, many people believe that a cat taking a rest on a certain part of your body is actually curing organs, located there by absorbing bad energy. Spending time with your pets can have positive therapeutic effects, decreasing stress and the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Even though sometimes caring for pets can be time-consuming, it’s one of the best ways to spend excessive energy. Sure, nobody is happy with all that hair all over the house, broken things or waking up in the middle of the night only because a pet wants your company. However, owners forget all those trifles, looking into the devoted eyes of their pets. Moreover, caring for an animal teaches responsibility and compassion. It can be a great investment of excessive energy which is totally worth it.

Living with a pet can change your life for better, boosting your energy, social activity and bringing you tons of positive emotions. Pets can cure their owners, detecting potential health problems and preventing them whenever possible. Some inconveniences caused by caring for a pet, such as early rising and sometimes broken things are nothing compared to the benefits humans get from adopting a pet.

Disclaimer: Sure, we do not claim that this formula of a 5 paragraph essay is ‘one size fits all’. Yet, getting a skeleton before the rest of the paper can save plenty of time.

Good luck with your 5 paragraph essay!

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