How to Write a 5-Paragraph Essay?

Writing a 5-paragraph essay is easier than you think! This guide will teach you how to write an outstanding essay.

Anyone who has consistently written essays knows that you sometimes get blank trying to write on a specific topic. While there are several suggestions for getting your writing mojo back, an overlooked one is writing a 5-paragraph essay. The primary purpose of the 5-paragraph essay writing is to ensure organization and focus, which can come in handy when writing on a very broad or narrow subject.  

The 5-Paragraph essay, also known as the Hamburger essay or the three-tier essay, has five paragraphs.

The first is the introductory paragraph. It introduces your readers to the essay and provides background information. A wrong first paragraph ruins the perception of every other thing you write. Hence, you must write it carefully and precisely. The introductory paragraph also sets the tone for the reader, and it is relieving to know that the processes needed to write a regular essay apply here.

After the introductory paragraph, the next three paragraphs are called the body paragraphs. These paragraphs focus on the main idea of the article and explain then schematically. 

The last paragraph in the 5-paragraph essay is called the concluding paragraph. It is primarily a summary of the essay's ideas, and this part of the essay gives your reader something to ponder.

This article will guide you in writing an informative and engaging 5-paragraph essay, with some excellent rules of thumb to follow. 

What Is a 5-Paragraph Essay?

As explained earlier, the five-paragraph essay guides a writer on effective essay structuring. It might not be commonly seen in literature because of its length, but it is important in educational writing, like assignments and exercises. Instead of viewing this essay as another form of essay, see it as an essay guide.  

There are some vital components of a good 5-paragraph essay writing.

  1. Unity

All the details of the paragraph must be symbiotic. Every idea should be tightly knit and hewed. Unity in essay writing cannot be overemphasized. Your reader will be repelled by or engrossed in your writing if it has a flowing unity. 

  1. Coherence

Similar to unity, coherence refers to how well the ideas are understood. To achieve coherence, a writer must have all the ideas written out and linked. This will help in ensuring a smooth flow when writing. Also, the ideas should be linked to the chief topic. This eradicates the fear of straying. 

  1. Adequate Development

The reader will look forward to the next paragraph of your essay if it is well developed. They should have questions only after reading the article and exploring other possibilities as proposed in the piece. One good tip for writing is to have paragraphs that sufficiently explain the topic and keep them concise enough to be contained in five paragraphs.

5 Paragraph Essay Format

What is the primary focus of a 5-paragraph essay format? Simple, to help you get more clarity on what you are writing about. 

Like other forms of essay writing, the first thing to note is your thesis or idea focal point. This is the subject on which your essay will be centered, and you will have three paragraphs to explain, elaborate, support, or discard the thesis you are working with. This can also be seen as an elaborate definition of your article’s ‘what.’  

Your thesis is explained in the first paragraph. You might not write it first, as it should be the captivating part of your writing, but if you do, explaining the topic in a single sentence will help you understand what you need to focus on in your thesis.  


Drafting a five-paragraph essay format should not be time-consuming. Once the topic is settled and the outline completed, the writing is the least part of the work. Like every building construction, the outline can be likened to the foundation of your essay. The strength of the outline determines the strength of the writing. It is not out of place to change the outline/blueprint for your essay many times before writing.


The primary concern in essay writing is not the number of words written but a seamless flow from one thought to another. One hallmark of good writing is a fluid transition from one paragraph to another, and this is because jarred paragraphs can leave the reader frustrated. 

A quick hack for transitioning is to use transitioning words. Words like “Although, However, On the other hand, On a second thought, etc.” can help with fluid reading. Most times, these words can be added before a paragraph to connect the preceding one with it; sometimes, putting them in between sentences is accepted.  

5 Paragraph Essay Structure

Paragraphs are the building blocks of your essay. The five paragraphs should be concise and informative, as each has an essential role in making your essay professional. Let’s look at the 5 paragraph essay outline and what they might contain. 

Introductory Paragraph

Introducing an essay allows you to state your thesis and summarize the main points you will be discussing. It is your opportunity to hook the reader's attention and make them want to read more. You must provide a clear and concise thesis statement and some supporting evidence to do this. The introductory paragraph should also include a brief mention of the overall structure of your essay. Let the reader know what they can expect in the coming paragraphs.  

Body Paragraphs

A body paragraph is a paragraph that makes up the main body of an essay. Body paragraphs are usually composed of several sentences, including a topic sentence, supporting sentences, and a concluding sentence. The topic sentence introduces the paragraph's main idea, while the supporting sentences provide information that supports the topic sentence. Body paragraphs should be related to the thesis statement, and all sentences in each paragraph should support the main idea.  

Concluding Paragraph

In the conclusion of an essay, it is important to restate the thesis in different words than were used in the introduction. This shows that the student understands the argument and can summarize it effectively. It is also important to briefly mention the implications of the argument and any potential future research that could be done on the topic. Finally, the conclusion should leave the reader with a powerful impression of the essay's main point. 

By following these guidelines, students can ensure that their concluding paragraph is concise and impactful.

5 Paragraph Essay Writing Tips

Having learned the basic structure of a 5-paragraph essay, some tips would help you get your essay done in the best way possible. Let’s see some of them before we show a sample of 5 paragraph essay.

  1. Be Flexible 

Your outline is the least-checked item of your 5-paragraph essay, so you can get flexible with it and open up your mind to possibilities. You need not worry about punctuation or structure while writing your essay outline. Write as freely as you would talk with a friend. If you see a better perspective from which your essay can be explained, you can change or modify your thesis to support your new information. 

  1. Treat Plagiarism like a Plague.  

All offenses in essay writing can be forgiven, except the offense of plagiarism. Even accidental plagiarism is not treated as an accident. Cite all sources adequately to avoid falling into this trap. Have a separate page referencing your quoted sources to keep them organized.  

  1. Write More than One Essay Draft

No one gauges your number of drafts, so do not be afraid of making mistakes, rewriting, and editing. You can write as many as seven drafts with a fair deadline. With constant repeating practice, you become more excellent. 

5 Paragraph Essay Examples

Here is a five-paragraph essay example to better understand how they work. 

Example of a Five-paragraph essay - The world beyond our Earth

The World Beyond Our Earth

Have you ever wondered what lies beyond the skies? If you have ever been on a plane trip, you will be amazed at the vastness of the earth from a sky view. Now, imagine viewing space from beyond gravity’s reach. Our world is so vast that the earth looks like a grain of sand by the seashore. We will not consider the universe; the many galaxies for time and space would not permit us. Let’s just look at Earth’s immediate environment; our solar system. 

The Sun is the largest object in the solar system and accounts for over 99% of its mass. It is surrounded by planets that orbit around it. 

The solar system formed about 4.6 billion years ago from a cloud of dust and gas, and while there are different explanations for how it was formed, the components (planets, moon, sun, and other bodies) are undisputed.  

The planets all orbit the Sun in the same direction and at different speeds. Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars are rocky inner planets that are closest to the Sun. The outer planets, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, are much larger and mostly made of gas and ice.  

There is so much to learn about the solar system, so much that the more we learn, the more we discover there is more to learn. With a dedicated profession called astronomy given to the study of the solar system, and more sophisticated computers to make sense of whatever is seen in space, it is sure we will gain mastery over the solar system and learn how to relate with earth’s neighbors.

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