personal narrative is the recounting of a memory or event in sequential
I. Topic sentence (Introduction).
(Tell WHO, WHERE the event took place, WHEN
it happened, How did you feel?)
II. Supporting ideas (Body).
1. First... Describe situation leading up to what is about to
2. Next... Tell what you or other person is doing.
3. After that... Tell how object/liquid is
passed between the people.
What happened after the event? - Describe the outcome.
III. Conclusion. (Simple comment).
did it change your life? (Tell how you felt,
what you learned or resolved to do in the future OR why the memory is important)
Use PAST tenses
NARRATIVE TRANSITION WORDS :
Transition Words You Might Use in a Story (Narrative)
As soon as
The next moment
After a time
Not Long After
In the meantime
Exercises to practice:
Part 1—Read all the sentences below. Numbers the lines to
show the order in which they would appear in paragraph form.
we made a campfire and cooked.
weekend we took the family camping.
finally went into the tent to sleep.
when it was dark, we sat around the campfire and popped corn.
children found dry twigs, while Laurie and I set up the tent.
found a nice area near a stream.
hiked all day, looking for a good site.
Part 2—Underline the transition words in this narrative
paragraph. (There are 6 words or phrases.)
I had a great time at the state fair.
First I saw all the prize-winning animals. Next I inspected the latest types of
farm equipment. After that I test-drove an off-the-road vehicle. After eating a
delicious lunch of barbecue ribs and buttered corn-on-the-cob, I decided to
sample the carnival ride I used to enjoy when I was young. At first I liked it,
but I became dizzy. Later I drove home.
Part 3—Make a list
of transition words you can use in a narrative paragraph.
This past weekend I had the time of my life. First, Friday night, I had my best friend over and we made a delicious, mouth-watering pizza. After we ate, we had a friendly video game competition. On Saturday, my dad took us out on the boat. The weather was perfect and the water was warm. It was a great day to go for a swim. Later that night, we went to the movies. We saw an action packed thriller and ate a lot of popcorn. Finally, on Sunday, we rode our bikes all over town. By the end of the day, my legs were very tired. I only hope that next weekend can be as fun as this one.
Notice the transition words that were used to move the paragraph along. Everything is in the correct order.
The paragraph provides details and stays on topic.
Underline the topic sentence of the paragraph.
On a sheet of paper list the major events of the narrative. The first event has
been listed for you.
First, Friday night, I had my best friend over
Reread the narrative, circling the transitional words and expressions the
writer uses to create a clear time order.
you find this narrative paragraph effective? Why, or why not?
Part 4. Narrative Paragraph Writing Assignment
Write a paragraph on this topic: The Best Day of Your Life
This will be a narrative paragraph. You will tell the story of this day of your life.
Brainstorming—Answer these questions
for your brainstorming:
- When was this day?
- Where were you?
- Who was with you?
- What were you doing?
- Why is this your best day?
- Write you paragraph.
- Read over your paragraph and make
corrections in ideas, spelling, punctuation, and grammar.
Three—Evaluating and Conferencing
- Use the paragraph self-evaluation
form to evaluate your paragraph.
- Conference with your teacher when you are
done with all these steps.