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Paragraph Essay – Descriptive and Narrative

Grade 8
Aug 30, 2022

A paragraph is a group of related sentences that develop a single point; or a group of  sentencesrelated to one topic. 

An essay that is completed in a single paragraph is called a paragraph essay. 

To write an essay that closely resembles this definition and to deliver would be something that takes some practicing. Therefore, it is important to understand what we call the Principles of Paragraph Structure and follow it while drafting your essay to make it stand apart.  

Let us take a look at it.  

Principles of Paragraph Structure 

1. Unity: 

The first and the most important principle to remember while writing a paragraph is the principle of unity. Just as each sentence addresses a single thought, each paragraph must address one topic or idea — and no more than one. Every sentence in a paragraph in an essay must be closely related to the paragraph’s main topic. The paragraph and all of its parts must express a single theme or topic. 


The topic, theme, or subject of a paragraph is frequently expressed in one sentence – usually the first. This is known as the topical sentence (because it states the topic). 

2. Order: 

The second principle of paragraph construction is that oforder, which refers to the logical sequence of thought or subject development. Events must be related in the order in which they occur, and all ideas must be linked to the leading idea that are arranged in the order in which they occur. 

The first and last sentences of the paragraph are the most important. The first sentence, which should usually be the topical sentence, should pique the reader’s interest, and the last should satisfy it. The first sentence, or topical sentence, states the topic – a fact, statement, or proposition; the last should sum up  entire paragraph on this topic to a conclusion. 

3. Brevity: 

A paragraph essay should not be more than a few sentences long. The preferred limit should be around two hundred words; however, there can be no hard and fast rule regarding length, which will vary greatly depending on the nature of the subject. But it should be a brief exercise no matter what with succinct expression. Suppose that you are asked to write a paragraph essay on a topic. You cannot approach the topic in its entirety as you do in a long essay. But still, you must follow  the principle of unity to confine your paragraph to one definite topic. Therefore, you must choose one thing which should be used predominantly in your essay so that brevity is maintained and it is finished within the stipulated word limit. 

Classification of Essays: 

Essays may be classified as descriptive essays, narrative essays, expository essays, reflective essays , imaginative essays, andpersuasive essays. This classification is obviously useful, as long as it is remembered that these classes are not mutually exclusive and that some essays may inevitably exhibit characteristics from more than one class. A narrative essay, for example, may include a lot of description; and essays of all kinds may be more or less reflective, because the original idea of this type of composition is an expression of the writer’s own feelings and opinions about a given subject. 


Let us take a look at the descriptive and narrative essays

Descriptive Essays: 

Descriptive essays are about sharing one’s point of view. Effective descriptive writing uses descriptions to paint a mental picture of some place or thing in the mind of the reader. This type of writing frequently includes vivid imagery and makes use of all five senses. 

Fiction and nonfiction can both be descriptive writing. It frequently employs figurative language while also providing concrete information. 

The following example for a descriptive essay: 

Global Warming 

Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere. It is caused by an increase in carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, which causes temperature to rise. Man’s mass deforestation activities have accelerated global warming. Plants use carbon dioxide to prepare their food, and as a byproduct, they emit oxygen. So, if we have enough plants, they will absorb excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and, to some extent, slow the rate of global warming. Planting more trees can reduce carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, resulting in less global warming. 

Notice how the descriptive essay on global warming is constructed. It starts with the topical sentence, which clearly states the subject. The sentence that follows explains the statement by further expanding it. And the concluding sentence gives a the essay a fitting conclusion by stating a solid reason as to why planting more trees is a solution to global warming

Narrative Essays: 

A narrative essay primarily consists of the narration of an event or series of events. It should not be confused with a short story or historical facts. The narrative to which it refers should be treated as a topic for reflection and comment, and thus the essay should be more or less reflective. 

The following example for a narrative essay: 

Car Accidents 

The unreal craze for speed is the most notorious factor that is responsible for the countless car accidents that take place in our country. It was only a couple of weeks back did I witness a car accident on my way to Florida. I was out on a tour with my friends and was driving the car. As we slowly took a turn to the left, I closly witness the fatal collision of two cars and the havoc it wrecked on the road. The collision had been caused by a red Ferrari that was flying at a speed of fifty miles an hour at a turn when it crashed into a car that was coming in the opposite direction. Unfortunately, both the drivers involved in the accident were killed on the spot and the two cars were wrecked beyond recognition. To drive at such reckless speed down a steep turn is simply to invite tragedy. 

In this essay, the topical sentence again opens it. The narrative that follows is simply an illustration of the topical sentence’s statement that many accidents are caused by an insane craze for speed; and the concluding sentence summarises the essay by restating the topical sentence in other words. 


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