top of page

A Sample five-paragraph How-to Essay

This is a sample. Study the structure and wording.


  • See how signals are used.

  • Notice how each paragraph is indented.

  • Notice how the thesis statement is written and how the previous sentences lead to it (Funnel method).

  • Notice how each body paragraph begins with a topic sentence, followed by supporting details.

  • Note how each paragraph in the body has one unified idea.

  • Note how the conclusion "wraps up" by first re-stating the thesis statement and then commenting on the topic.





The Successful Student

            Some students never learn effective study habits in high school and struggle through their first semester of college.  Succeeding at college is not only about studying harder, but also about being better organized. A student can be successful in many ways, such as by being on time for class, keeping an assignment notebook, and managing his time.

            For a student to be successful, he or she must begin by getting to class on time.  To do this, a student should make next morning preparations, such as ironing his or her garments, on the night before class. This will save him or her at least five to ten minutes in the morning, and he or she may use that time to read the newspaper, take out the garbage or have breakfast.  A student also should put gasoline in his or her vehicle after he runs his final errand for the day. This simple task will prevent him or her from having to wait for an available pump at the gas station in the morning and be late for his or her classes.  Next, one should purchase an alarm clock and set the alarm to wake him early enough. By following these simple steps, a student will have thirty minutes to prepare and eat a wholesome breakfast, which will benefit him by allowing him to be more focused during class instead of being distracted by the growling of his or her stomach.

            The other technique used by a successful student will be using an assignment notebook or a weekly diary.   This notebook will help him or her in many ways. He or she should begin by recording all tests, quiz dates, and chapters that are involved immediately upon receiving his syllabus at the beginning of each semester. This provides the student with a convenient reference.  The importance of this reference is the student has quick access to information, otherwise, he or she would desperately search through all of the accumulated handouts that he or she had received throughout the semester. This notebook should also contain project and essay due dates.  By doing this, the student has ample time to complete and review his material more than once, allowing him or her to make the necessary changes, which will result in a better grade.  He should avoid postponing tasks. Therefore, by making studying a priority, one can allow time for hobbies and friends.

            Thirdly, a student must manage his or her time effectively. To achieve this goal, a student should designate specific hours to study and not take phone calls or accept visits because studying is more effective when there are no distractions. This dedication will be evidenced in one’s grades.  One should keep in mind that planning ahead is not as bad as it sounds.  For example, if a student’s first class begins at 9:00 a.m. and his last class ends at 1:00 p.m., he could be done studying by 5:00 p.m. and have plenty of time for visiting with friends and watching television, which makes the demands of being a full-time student less stressful.

               On the whole, success is not only studying harder, but being more organized. This can be done by being punctual, keeping a notebook to organize one’s tasks and by designating a number of hours each day for studying.  Most people generally get only one opportunity to succeed, so they should not let anything – or anyone – stand in the way of whatever they are trying to accomplish.


bottom of page