How to Write a Concluding Paragraph, Easy Essay Conclusion Format, High School Teacher Vlog

let me show you how just three sentences can make the difference between a b-plus and an a-minus [Music] hey everyone today I want to talk about how to help our kids learn to write amazingly powerful concluding paragraphs on their essays so if this is your first video with me I’d love it if you paused go down there and click and watch the how to write an introductory paragraph video because I’m gonna refer to some things in there that’ll be helpful for you to have his background alright so concluding paragraphs matter more than our kids think my kids often when they first come in they you know they don’t give much time or attention to that last paragraph they just slap a couple sentences in there hit print and turn it in usually without even running spell or grammar check that’s a different video for a different day but that concluding paragraph it’s actually super important and is often the decider for me as the reader between an essay that’s pretty good and an essay that’s excellent because the concluding paragraph is the the in note the long lingering thought that the reader me has as I turn the page and start to fill out my content rubric so I teach my kids a really concrete way it has three things three ingredients that make a really strong concluding paragraph and I’m gonna share that with you today I have a second video I’m going to cue up here right now stay tuned at the end of that I actually have two models of strong concluding paragraphs that you’re welcome to use one is for Lit analysis and one is for argument so let’s go alright we are looking at a skeleton here for the conclusion paragraph format and I teach my kids to use this whenever we’re dealing with literary analysis argument writing or research narrative which is the other mode that I teach obviously this wouldn’t fit that but for those first three modes this is going to be a super useful tool okay you’re also seeing here that there are three elements involved in creating this paragraph and each one really could just be one sentence so all told the concluding paragraph could just be three sentences sometimes four we really don’t want to move beyond five sentences because enough is enough all right when we talked about the intro paragraph and again that video is available at the link in the descriptions we talked about that paragraph being a funnel in where we start broad and we get really narrow and then of course the conclusion is the funnel out we start really narrow with the restatement of thesis and then we go really broad moving away from the work at hand to talk about more universal truths okay so first up is Restatement using fresh words so sometimes my kids when they first come in in the fall semester they think it’s okay just to copy the thesis statement from the end of the intro paragraph and then just paste it into the beginning of their concluding paragraph and no no and no they are not allowed to do that um it creates this super robotic feeling and I want to feel like there’s a passionate writer behind the keyboard that created this essay for me and simple copy and paste of thesis is just a disaster so I require that they rewrite that idea it’s the exact same idea but they’re just massaging it and using fresh words now sometimes this is really hard for kids or like this is how I would say it I said it in the thesis how else I’m gonna say it so I actually have a really successful sentence starter here that helps kids over this hump and I want to give a shout out to my friend Stephanie Kamali back at Amador Valley I’d say a dozen years ago she gave me this idea I’m pretty sure stuff that it was you my memory is not great but I really think that you’re the one who showed this to me so I’m crediting it to you whether or not you gave it to me but I’m like 97.2% sure this was you so Steph told me that you could actually start it like this and the Sinister goes when one considers blank and blank it’s clear that blah-dee blah-blah and that’s a great way to get kids going I still use it today and my kids hang on to it because it’s super concrete and helpful you’ll see that I actually only use two body paragraphs in my freshmen essays so they actually write four paragraph essays for me because the body paragraphs are pretty involved and I’ll deal with that on a different video if you’d like the five paragraph essay so you have the three body paragraphs topics you just say when one considers XY and Z and so you could fold into three really easily and I have an example of that a few slides down that I’ll show you how this works okay so there you go they’ve restated the thesis and then we move on to explaining why any of this matters like why did they write this essay why should any of us care why was it a good idea for me to spend the last you know a few minutes reading their essay they should be answering what I call the so what so what does any of this matter and why should we care they need one maybe two sentences explaining the the bigger consequence of the thing that they’ve been looking about and then they wrap it up one awesome powerful sentence that ends on a weighty note and that’s the kicker or what we sometimes called a lingering thought one sentence that just wraps it all up has a resounding note makes me glad that I spent my time reading this paper if the kids get stuck on the kicker or they feel like they’re just rewriting the same idea as what they wrote in the sowhat sentence above it I sometimes encourage kids to try playing with a famous quote as the end note of their essay that can be a really successful technique and I’ll show you that in just a second on the next slide so whatever they do they want to end strong note on the quote option two things that my kids kind of mess up when they do the quotes one they forget to cite it so I want to make sure that I remind everyone yes you still need to cite that quote even if it’s just a kicker quote at the end I mean also they sometimes want to overuse it so if they’re using a famous quote as a hook at the beginning of the intro paragraph they are not allowed to use one as a kicker because that is just too much of a good thing okay so here is what its gonna look like in real life so on a previous video I talked about intro paragraph structure and I used James Hurst short story The Scarlet Ibis as our model again if you haven’t seen that go back in time click the link and go see that on today I’m grabbing in the upper left hand corner the thesis from that video and I’m using it as the basis for what would launch into the conclusion so I’m gonna read the thesis the original thesis to you and then I’m gonna get into the Restatement so you can see the difference okay original thesis ultimately Hearst uses the complicated relationship between doodle and brother to show that love always contains some drops of poison mmm compelling idea and then I would have had my freshmen spend one body paragraph talking about foreshadowing and then a second body paragraph analyzing the symbolic uses of read there’s like a red bird scarlet ibis itself the little brother is very like red he’s covered in blood when he dies it’s super sad there’s red Leafs on the bush the coffin is a mahogany redwood so there’s lots of red things happening in the story so they would spend a body paragraph analyzing that and then we’re ready for the fourth paragraph conclusion when one considers the stories elements of foreshadowing and symbolic use of various shades of red it is clear that resentment is a common side effect of love every child is taught that hate is the opposite of love yet hearst reveals that those two feelings are actually part of the same powerful emotion just as there can be no light without dark the human heart can’t help but create some bitterness as it seeks the sweetness of love oh yeah and then we have that nice EndNote where we sit and we mentally chew on that idea and as I’m reading that I’m thinking is that true for my own relationships and I’m sitting with that idea which is a fresh lens of looking at what the theme of this story is and that’s what it’s all about that’s what we want we want to have an impact and help people see things in a different way that’s why we analyze these stories in the first place all right so there’s an example of literary analysis conclusion that works on the next slide I have one for argument writing which is a totally different thing um if you’re familiar with my argument essay writing materials this thesis in the upper left-hand corner is gonna look really familiar to you in that packet as we’re doing prep work before kids start writing their own I actually have them deconstruct both a pro and con essay on the topic of whether energy drinks should be sold to minors so like Red Bull and monster whether it’s okay for people under 18 to buy those so in one of those essays this would be the essay against such legislation we get this original thesis proposed laws to ban energy drink sales to minors are well intentioned but short-sighted because the legislators claims not only lacks scientific support but also insult responsible citizens all right and then we would spend this would be a five paragraph essay so you’ll see what the three body paragraphs are in the Restatement of thesis when one considers the absence of scientific proof the desire for fairness in the marketplace and individual rights and responsibilities it is clear the proposed loss to prohibit energy drink sales to minors should be defeated in our country it’s difficult to change a law the process encourages us to think through proposals and fully examine an issue before we Inc a new rule that will govern all our lives perhaps English philosopher John Locke expressed this best when he reminded us that every new law must be designed not to abolish or restrain but to preserve and enlarge freedom and there’s your solid note and they were like John Locke and we think about it notice here that I have the proper MLA 8th edition citation I would leave this up on the slide and I have it on the student handout so that kids have a good model of what that would look like and there you go so this one was four sentences the previous one on lit analysis was just three sentences so kids can get this done in a really small amount of space on their paper this last slide I have for you is actually a student handout so I would give this to my kids as a reference tool for them to keep in their notebooks or their writing portfolios so they can refer back to it as they start writing their own conclusions on whatever essay I’ve given them so the lit analysis there and the argument and then they could sort of see how these are all pieced together and they also have a model of good mla citation as well so if you’d like a copy of those slides or the student handout just click down there there’s a link where you can download everything I want to thank you for the few minutes you spent here hopefully these tools are useful if they are you can pay me back by giving me a like subscribing to the channel or just letting some of your English teacher friends know that we’re here hanging out trying to solve problems all right this is the last forum afternoon here in Idaho apparently it’s supposed to rain tomorrow and then maybe that’ll turn into snow so I gotta go enjoy the last few hours I’m gonna put the cushions away and I’ll see you probably indoors next time bye everyone [Applause] [Music] [Applause] [Music] [Applause]

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