Often times students get so caught up in just writing a paragraph to satisfy the “five sentences equal a paragraph” rule that they don’t complete a paragraph that fully supports their claim.  Often times teachers let it go and don’t bother to teacher the underlying misconception.  A paragraph is not divided into five (5) sentences. A paragraph is divided into five (5) distinct sections.

Help your students to understand and recognize the five sections of a paragraph. While you may choose to limit the paragraph to one sentence per section, as you  help students to develop  their writing skills, have discussions about the appropriate length for the different sections.

Here is one of the most tried and true strategies to teach your students how to write a constructed response for the five sections of each paragraph. Have your students paste this bookmark into their notebook or writing journal. You might also find it beneficial to post as an anchor chart!

R.A.C.E.S. Writing Strategy

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