This video gives key tips for writing punchy concluding sentences, plus advice on when to use them. Making a joke, taking a step back, and bringing your argument full circle can all be great ways to conclude a paragraph—and they’re all discussed in this video.
|Essay Writing||Writing Elements and Process|
|Persuasive Texts||Argumentive Essay|
How do you write a concluding sentence... with a punch?
Just as a boxing match with a 'roo consists of multiple rounds, your essay consists of
It's important to end some of these with a little jab to the gut, just to get your
point across and let your opponent... er... reader, know you mean business.
Anyway, short paragraphs don't need punchy concluding sentences, but longer paragraphs do.
A great way to conclude a paragraph is to remind readers where you started. If you started
talking about effects of toxic laundry detergent on the environment, remind your readers of that.
And say you've spent four or five detailed sentences describing the anatomy of a kangaroo's
legs. Let your reader know that a kangaroo's legs are for more than just hopping.
The end of your essay needs a sentence so punchy that it's a "great big honking walloper."
That's Shmoop-slang meets Australian slang for "total knock out."
The final sentence should leave your readers' heads spinning.
Ask yourself, what's the theme of your essay?
If the point is that animals display human characteristics, such as a love for boxing,
make sure to focus on that.
If the point of your essay is that kangaroos bite other boxers' ears off, a la Mike Tyson,
well... good luck finding citations for that one.
Whatever your point, you need to lead your reader's thought process in that direction
by saying something like, "Animals are more like us than we think."
Your conclusion is a good place to take a step back and analyze something larger.
How do kangaroos fit into the world? Marsupials might be a small part of the animal kingdom,
but they're still important.
Just don't zoom too far out. "Kangaroos are awesome!" might be true, but it's
a little too vague of a note to end your essay on.
You can also make a joke, like, "Don't take a kickboxing class with a kangaroo."
You just have to make sure this fits in with the tone of the rest of your essay. If your
paper is about kangaroos going extinct and leaving your readers in tears, a humorous
rim-shot isn't the best note to end on.
Finally, you can bring your essay full circle.
Maybe you can make a reference to the title of your essay. Perhaps it's called "Hopping
Mad" and you get angry when kangaroos and wallabies are confused. Or you can talk about
how kangaroos are always "Kicking it to the Limit."
OR maybe you can think of a reference that doesn't sound like the name of an eighties
dance aerobics class.
So those are a few ways to write concluding sentences with a punch.
Take a step back.
Make a joke.
Bring your essay full circle.
And make sure to transition into the ending like the smooth operator that you are.
After all, while you don't want to telegraph your knockout punch in a title bout, but in
an essay, it's nice to let your reader know that it's coming.