Personal tools

Introduce: Persuasive Paragraph

From FreeReading

Jump to: navigation, search
Lesson Type: Introduce
Grade: 1, 2, 3
Group Size: Small Group, Large Group, Whole Class
Length: 20 minutes
Goal: Given a piece of persuasive writing, students will be able to understand its purpose and identify its elements.

Materials: Board or chart paper, Sample Persuasive Paragraph (print here), four index cards. Suggested reading: Alexander and the Terrible No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst, Can I Have a T-Rex, Dad? by Lois G. Grambling, Dear Mrs. LaRue by Mark Teague

What to Do


Label index cards with the elements of a persuasive paragraph (Topic Sentence, Reason One, Reason Two, Closing Sentence)

Copy a large version of the Sample Persuasive Paragraph, or an example of persuasive writing from a book, on the board or chart paper.


1. Explain the lesson.

Today we will be talking about persuasive writing. Persuasive writing tries to change the way a reader thinks or acts. Some examples of persuasive writing are advertisements, apology notes, and book or movie reviews.

2. Explain the elements of a persuasive paragraph.

The beginning of a persuasive paragraph is a topic sentence that states your opinion or feeling. The middle provides two or more reasons or facts that support your opinion. The end is a closing sentence that restates your opinion and summarizes how you feel.


3. Read the Sample Persuasive Paragraph or use an example of persuasive writing from a book to demonstrate the elements of persuasive writing.

4. Review the elements of persuasive writing.

Let’s take a look at this example of persuasive writing and see if we can label its parts. The first part of a persuasive paragraph is the topic sentence. Who can put the topic sentence index card in the right place?

Repeat for the other index cards.

5. Explain the importance of voice.

In persuasive writing, it’s important to use words that express how you feel. What words did the writer use in this sample to show how they feel?

6. Explain the importance of knowing your audience, referring to your persuasive writing sample.

It’s also important to think about who will read your paragraph. Who is your audience? Are you going to write for an adult or a child? What do you have in common with your audience? Who do you think will read this paragraph? How can you tell?


For Advanced Students:

Ask these students to explain the purpose of each element of persuasive writing in their own words.

For Struggling Students:

These students may have difficulty labeling the parts of the sample. In this case place the index cards next to each part of the persuasive paragraph for them.

For ELL Students:

Give these students a persuasive writing sample with all of the elements labeled.

Related activities