Presentation on theme: "UNDERSTANDING PARAGRAPHS. INTRODUCTION A paragraph is a group of sentences. Every sentence in a paragraph is about the same topic. Example of a GOOD paragraph:"— Presentation transcript:
INTRODUCTION A paragraph is a group of sentences. Every sentence in a paragraph is about the same topic. Example of a GOOD paragraph: A doctor’s job is not easy. Doctors often spend many hours with patients. There are usually more patients waiting. So doctors don’t have much free time during the day. They often have to work all night in the hospital, too. They must also read about new ways to taking care of patients, and they must write reports about people in their care.
BAD PARAGRAPH Violins are made of wood. The best old pianos were made in Germany. Musicians spend a lot of time practicing. Sometimes they play for eight hours a day. Most violinists stand up when they play alone. Taking music lessons can be expensive. The kind of wood in a violin is important. Many famous musicians started to study at an early age.
Is this a good paragraph? In the United States, sports stars make a lot of money. It’s not unusual for a basketball player to get $6 million a year. Some baseball players are also paid millions of dollars. These sports stars also get extra money from sporting equipment companies. For example, manufacturers pay sports stars to wear the shoes they make.
Is this a good paragraph? In some countries, students can go to college for free. It’s often difficult to get a good job in a small town. Students often leave small towns to study in the city. The populations of most countries are growing quickly. Many families have five or six children. In the winter, there is always a lot of snow in Maine.
Choosing the Best Topic A good reader always asks, “What is this paragraph about? What is the topic?” The best topic is not too specific (small) and not too general (large). You should always ask yourself, “What is it about?”
Miami is a popular place for tourists, especially in winter. In fact, this part of Florida always has warm, sunny weather. Miami is on the seaside, and it has beautiful beaches. These beaches are one important reason shy people go to Miami. But the city is also fun to visit. There are brightly colored homes and hotels along many streets. There are many interesting museums, and there are dozens of restaurants with great food.
What is the topic? A. Restaurants in Miami? Too specific (small) There is only one sentence in the paragraph that is about food. B. Popular places for tourists? Too general (big) The paragraph is not about every popular place for tourists. It’s only about Miami. Why tourists like Miami? YES!
The Everglades is in the center of south Florida. It is a wild area with no towns or houses. The Everglades is famous for its wildlife and plants. Some of these plants and animals live only in the Everglades. They live there because of the warm climate and water. In fact, the Everglades has lots of water. In the middle of the Everglades is a very wide river, called the “River of Grass.” It changes with the seasons. In the rainy season it is 50 miles wide in some places.
What is the topic? A. The climate in Florida B. The Florida Everglades C. Plants and wildlife B is the correct answer. A and C are both too general (big).
Main Idea The Main Idea of a paragraph is usually stated in one sentence. It tells the writer’s idea about the topic. The main idea sentence is important. There can be many paragraphs about the same topic, but they do not all have the same main idea.
Main Idea Example: The topic is elephants. The three sentences are three different main ideas about the topic, elephants. Elephants live in Africa and Asia. Elephants are killed for their ivory tusks. Elephants can cause serious problems for farmers.
The topic is bicycles: In some parts of the world, many people use bicycles for transportation. First of all, they are much cheaper than cars. They also do not need gas to make them go. Any bicycles are easy and cheap to fix. In cities, bicyclists don’t have to wait in traffic. They can always go around a traffic jam. Finally, bicycles don’t need parking spaces. They can be parked anywhere. What is the author’s main idea about bicycles? A.Bicycles are cheaper than cars. B.Bicycles are a problem in traffic. C.Bicycles are good for transportation.
Your Turn Clothes can tell you a lot about a person. Some people like very colorful clothes. They want everyone to look at them They want to be the center of things. Other people like to wear nice clothes, but their clothes are plain,, not colorful or fancy. They don’t like people to look at them. There are also some people who wear the same thing all the time. They don’t care if anyone looks at them or not They don’t care what anyone thinks about them. A. Some people wear colorful clothes. B. Clothes can tell you a lot about a person. C. Some clothes are nice, but very plain.
It’s important to bring the right clothes when you ravel. If you’re traveling to a cold country, you should bring warm clothes. Be sure you have a hat and gloves, too. If you’re going to a hot country, you need different clothes. You don’t want heavy or dark clothes. In hot weather, light clothes are best. If you’re going to a city, you may need some nice clothes. You may want to go to a special restaurant or a concert. It’s different if you’re traveling by bicycle in the country. Then you’ll want comfortable clothes. One rule is the same for all travelers, however. Do not bring too many clothes! A. The right clothes are important when you travel. B. Warm clothes are very important. C. Be sure to bring enough clothes when you travel.
Today’s clothes are different from the clothes of the 1800s. One difference is the way they look. For example, in the 1800s all women wore dresses with long skirts. Today women don’t always wear dresses with long skirts. Sometimes they wear short skirts, and sometimes they wear pants. Another difference between the 1800s and today is the cloth. In the 1800s, clothes were made only from natural kinds of cloth, such as cotton, wool, silk, and linen. Today, there are many kinds of man-made cloth, such a nylon, rayon, and polyester. A lot of clothes are made from these kinds of cloth. A. Clothes of the 1800s looked very different from today’s clothes. B. A lot of clothes are made of man-made cloth today. C. Clothes today are different from the clothes of the 1800s