Hawker Brownlow Education

Beyond the Five-Paragraph Essay

Author: Kimberly Hill Campbell, Kristi Latimer

Availability: In Stock

Code: SHP7453

ISBN: 9781760017453

No of Pages: 220

Publish date: 15/12/2015


Love it or hate it, the five-paragraph essay is perhaps the most
frequently taught form of writing in classrooms of yesterday and today. But
have you ever actually seen a five-paragraph essay outside of school walls?
Have you ever found it in business writing, journalism, nonfiction or any other
genres that exist in the real world? Kimberly Hill Campbell and Kristi Latimer
reviewed the research on the effectiveness of the form as a teaching tool and
discovered that the research does not support the five-paragraph formula. In
fact, research shows that the formula restricts creativity, emphasises
structure rather than content, does not improve standardised test scores,
inadequately prepares students for tertiary-level education and results in
vapid writing. 

In Beyond the Five-Paragraph
, Kimberly and Kristi show you how to reclaim the literary essay and
create a program that encourages thoughtful writing in response to literature.
They provide numerous strategies that stimulate student thinking, value unique
insight and encourage lively, personal writing, including the following:

  • Close
    reading (which is the basis for writing about literature)

  • Low-stakes
    writing options that support students’ thinking as they read

  • Collaboration
    in support of discussion, debate and organisational structures that encourage
    writing as exploration

  • A
    focus on students’ writing process as foundational to content development and

  • The
    use of model texts to write in the form of the literature students are reading
    and analysing

The goal of reading and writing about literature is to push and
challenge our students’ thinking. We want students to know that their writing
can convey something important: a unique view to share, defend, prove, delight,
discover and inspire. If we want our students to be more engaged, skilled
writers, we need to move beyond the five-paragraph essay.