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Topic Sentences

Sep 6, 2022
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A topic sentence states the main idea of a paragraph. It is usually found at the beginning of a paragraph.  

A topic sentence has several important jobs.  

  • introduces the main idea 
  • limits or focuses on the topic 
  • often tells the reader how the information will be organized in the paragraph. 

Example:

  • A healthy diet includes fruits and vegetables. 

Healthy diet– is a topic of a sentence, and rest of the sentence is an idea. 

My favorite things to do at the beach are fishing and surfing. 

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The Purposes of a Topic Sentence 

  • Alert the reader to the topic or ‘main point’ of the paragraph. 
  • Signify how the writer will approach the topic or main point of the paragraph. 
  • Support the author’s main statement. 

What is a Topic? 

A topic is the primary organizing principle of a verbal or written discussion. 

Any noun can be a topic as it can be a person, place, thing or an idea. 

The main idea of a paragraph is the primary point or concept that the author wants to communicate to the readers about the topic.  

Elements of a Topic Sentence 

  • A main subject 
  • A controlling idea 

Placement of a Topic sentence 

  • Topic sentences can appear at any point in the paragraph. (as the first, last, or somewhere in the middle sentence) 
  • Writers often place their topic sentence first in the paragraph—a position that enables the writer to state his or her main idea and then move on to explain it. 

Writing an effective ‘Topic Sentences’ 

The main point of the paragraph should be stated in the topic sentence. 

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  • It makes clear what the paragraph is about—the topic. 
  • It expresses a viewpoint about the topic. 
  • Topic sentence is neither too general nor too specific. 
  • Topic sentence should express complete thought. 
  • Avoid announcing topic. 

Example: 

Gold, a precious metal, is praised for two important characteristics. First of all, gold has a lustrous beauty that is resistant to corrosion. Therefore, it suitable for jewelry, coins, and ornamental purposes. Gold never needs to be polished and will remain beautiful forever. For example, a Macedonian coin remains as untarnished today as the day it was it was minted twenty-three centuries ago. Another important characteristic of gold is its usefulness to industry and science. For many years, it has been used in hundreds of industrial applications. The most recent use of gold is in astronauts’ suits. Astronauts wear gold-plated heat shields for protection outside the spaceship. In conclusion, gold is treasured not only for its beauty, but also for its utility. 

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