Parts of a Paragraph

Contributor: Erin Jones. Lesson ID: 11736

What read if mess you a this like? Would that make sense to you? Learning to write intelligently includes learning to write a perfect paragraph! Learn the color code to help you write like an author!



English / Language Arts
learning style
personality style
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!


How many colors are on a stop light? Three, right? You will use the colors green, yellow, and red to write a spectacular paragraph. Curious? Read on to learn more!

In this lesson, you will learn about the parts of a paragraph.

It is important that you provide your reader with all the information that he or she needs to clearly understand your written message.

Paragraphs have three main parts. Can you name them?

The three parts of a paragraph are:

  • the topic sentence
  • the new idea with explanations or examples
  • the conclusion

In this lesson, we will use the colors green, yellow, and red to color-code our paragraphs. This is an easy way to clearly identify the parts of a paragraph, and to make sure all parts are included.

Do you want to learn more about the parts of a paragraph? Read on!

The Topic Sentence

The topic sentence is the first sentence in a paragraph. It contains the main idea of the paragraph. You must provide your readers with a clear idea of exactly what information they will gain if they continue to read; that means it must also be interesting. You will use green for the topic sentence because, on a stop light, green means go. You want the reader to "go" on after reading the topic sentence.

The New Idea with Explanations or Examples

The new idea or ideas with explanations or examples comes next. This is the information you want to share with the reader. New ideas begin with transition words, such as "first," "next," and "last," and give readers a hint that a new idea is coming. These new ideas are always followed by explanations or examples to support them. These make your paragraph interesting! You will use yellow for the new ideas with explanations or examples because, on a stop light, the color yellow means slow down and proceed with caution. You want the reader to read slowly, and make sure he or she is paying attention to the new ideas that are being shared.

The Conclusion

The conclusion is the final sentence of a paragraph. The conclusion is where you restate the main idea from the topic sentence, using different words than you used in your topic sentence. Wouldn't it be boring if your conclusion were exactly the same sentence as your topic sentence? In other words, make sure you re-state the same idea but use different words. You will use red for your conclusion because, on a stop light, red means stop. Just like a driver stops and looks around to make sure traffic has stopped, a reader must stop and look around to make sure he or she understood the ideas in the paragraph.

Take a few minutes to talk with your teacher or parent about the three parts of a paragraph. Can you name the three parts? Can you tell your teacher or parent what each part of a paragraph includes?

Are you ready to practice what you have just learned? In the Got It? section, you will identify each part of a paragraph. Let's get started!

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