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ERIC Number: EJ1043757
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Apr
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1784
Beyond the Five-Paragraph Essay
Campbell, Kimberly Hill
Educational Leadership, v71 n7 p60-65 Apr 2014
Although using the five-paragraph formula to teach essay writing is a ubiquitous practice--and many K-12 teachers defend it--Campbell argues that having students write according to this formula does more harm than good. The formula's tight structure stops the very critical thinking students need to do to strengthen their cognition and their writing skills. Students focus on slotting sentences into a template rather than pondering what they really want to say about a topic. In addition, writing to the formula doesn't lead to the highest scores on standardized tests or prepare kids for college writing--and may reinforce a deficit model of education. Drawing on her experience teaching English language arts, Campbell suggest specific ways teachers can forgo the formula and guide students to read closely, gather evidence, think deeply about an argument they'd like to make, and make informed decisions about how to structure and compose their essay.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A