I need help with how to write an introduction paragraph.  My topic is the lessons we learn affect our future. I was thinking something on the lines of: The many life long lessons we learn as...

I need help with how to write an introduction paragraph.


My topic is the lessons we learn affect our future. I was thinking something on the lines of:

The many life long lessons we learn as individuals affect the outcome of our future. These lessons can be a struggle to get through or even a wake up call. Growing up I learned many life lessons.


Thats my intro and then i plan on going into what lessons i learned n the deatails?

Expert Answers
ktmagalia eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Writing is never done, it's just due. I've said this before, and I'm saying it again.  This topic has potential to be an intriguing and reflective writing, and I agree with the posters above in the fact that you need a little "pizazz" to grab your reader.  I'm a big fan of lyrics. Whenever I need a thematic connection, I very often go to music. As far as life lessons, I immediately thought of an old Lynyrd Skynyard song, appropriately entitled "Life Lessons". Here is a strong stanza that could be useful in your writing.

And will we look back and see what we've done
Will we be proud or ashamed of what we've become

An interesting, unique way to open would be to take a line of two from the song and then react to it personally. For example, "Just yesterday I heard the words of Lynyrd Skynyrd on the radio "Will we be proud or ashamed of what we've become" making me think about ...." I'm sure you get the picture. Of course, you have a plethora of music to choose from, but it is just an idea to begin your reflective essay in an artistic, reflective manner.  It seems fitting. Then, yes, you will follow with supporting paragraphs detailing your experiences, your lessons, and how this affects your future. Just be sure to be specific with your personal experience. Globally generalizing, or worse yet, making up stories to support your ideas will dimish the potential power of this essay.

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would say that you are on the right track for starting this.  I would probably amplify your first two sentences a bit.  The introduction should be enough to pull the reader into the piece, to compel them to want to continue reading.  I would play with the idea of how life lessons learned can be relevant in the future.  Perhaps, an example of this from another narrative could be present?  It might involve some research, but I think being able to find examples might help bring out your point a bit more.  I would also explore the idea of how these lessons or moments can be a "wake- up" call.  Exploring the idea of an "epiphany," or a moment of self understanding or awakening, could be very powerful here.  In expanding these ideas in trying to reach more, your introduction will pull the reader in and also bring some gravity into the piece so that it does not come across as superficial treatment of a profound topic.

ajinstructor | Student

This is a good start. Remember that your introduction paragraph should grab the reader's attention. The first sentence needs to jump off the page. Maybe it's a quote from someone about "life lessons" or maybe it's a neat fact. Also, keep in mind that when you are writing about life lessons, you might want to address how they change someone? Do they make people better workers, communicators, friends? Explore all of this in your paper. And as you get to the end of your paper, remember that you can always go back and change your introduction paragraph. Sometimes you need to write the entire essay to really understand what the paper is about.