Middle

This is the heart of your piece - it contains the key points and will probably have three to five ‘body’ paragraphs. You should start each paragraph with a lively clear topic sentence that introduces its main point, one that is developing the overall point of the piece.

For your reader, paragraphs are like stepping stones - they lead the reader through your ideas, step-by-step.

When to start a new paragraph

You can use TiPToP to help remind you when to use paragraphs.

A clock, Parisian scene, lightbulb, and woman with a microphone
  • Ti - stands for Time, so start a new paragraph for a different time period.
  • P - stands for Place, so start a new paragraph for each new place.
  • To - stands for Topic, so start a new paragraph for each new topic, idea or subject.
  • P - stands for Person, so start a new paragraph for each new person or change of speaker in a dialogue.

Sometimes you may want to play with your paragraphs to help make an interesting and lively style - maybe add a paragraph just to emphasise a key point. One way to do this is to create a paragraph from a single sentence.

Task

Roundabout in an empty playground.

Look at the sample questions and answers below about the preservation of a park. Use the TiPToP process to decide where the paragraphs should go in the answers.

Question

Write a persuasive article for your local paper, arguing that the local park should be preserved. In this question, you will be mainly dealing with ideas, so you need to concentrate on changes in topic.

Where would you put the new paragraph in the following passage?

The park is excellent for children. There is a small playground with a slide and swings, but there are also places where children can run around safely. In fact, it's the best place in town to take children to because there is always something to do. The war memorial was first constructed in 1922, with the names of the people who died in the First World War. Since then other names have been added, from the Second World War and from other more recent conflicts. We cannot just forget these people and we certainly cannot just destroy the memorial.

The park is excellent for children. There is a small playground with a slide and swings, but there are also places where children can run around safely; in fact it's the best place in town to take children to because there is always something to do.

The war memorial was first constructed in 1922, with the names of the people who died in the First World War. Since then other names have been added from the Second World War and from other more recent conflicts. We cannot just forget these people and we certainly cannot just destroy the memorial.

The new paragraph starts at the new topic.

Question

What information might best be presented and emphasised by using a one-line paragraph?

The park is excellent for children. There is a small playground with a slide and swings, but there are also places where children can run around safely. In fact, it's the best place in town to take children to because there is always something to do.

The war memorial was first constructed in 1922, with the names of the people who died in the First World War. Since then other names have been added, from the Second World War and also from more recent times, such as Northern Ireland. We cannot just forget these people and we certainly cannot just destroy the memorial.

We cannot just forget these people and we certainly cannot just destroy the memorial.

You will want to emphasise an emotional and important point so, to do that, you could make the last line a paragraph all by itself. This will add emphasis to its point.