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Easy Words to Use as Sentence Starters to Write Better Essays

Updated on March 11, 2017
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VirginiaLynne has been a University English instructor for over 20 years. She specializes in helping people write essays faster and easier.

How to Improve the Vocabulary of Your Essay
How to Improve the Vocabulary of Your Essay

Transition

Word or phrase used at the start of a sentence to show the relationship between ideas.

Improve Your Writing Today

Can you quickly and easily improve your writing? Yes. For over 20 years, I've been teaching the tips I share below to my students and every time they apply these tips, their writing gets dramatically better. Why? Three reasons:

  • These tips and transition words help you resist the old habit of simple subject-verb sentence structure and develop richer and more nuanced ideas.
  • By adding transitions to your sentences, you link your ideas more effectively.
  • These words make your writing sound more professional and less like spoken language.

Improving Your Essay: Choosing the Perfect Words
Improving Your Essay: Choosing the Perfect Words

How To Use Sentence Starter Lists

The most important tip for improving your writing quickly is to follow one rule:

Start every sentence in a paragraph with a different word. How? Here is my step-by-step guide:

  • Use the transition list as you write: Think about how the sentences in your paragraph are related to one another. If you are comparing and contrasting two ideas, then use the "Showing Contrast" transition words (see list below). Are you writing about steps in a process? Then use the "Adding to an Idea" transition words below. When writing about something that happened, use the "Sequence/Time" transitions I've provided.
  • Using the transition list while you are revising: Sometimes, it is easier not to worry about these words until your final draft stage, especially if you are a beginning writer. How do you do this? Use the following tips:
  1. Go through your first draft and circle the first word in every sentence.
  2. If you use the same word to start a sentence twice in a paragraph, then you need to choose another transition word and re-word the sentence.
  3. How to choose transition words? Think about how each sentence fits with the one before it.

Does this sentence add information? Then use "moreover," "furthermore," or another word that adds to the idea.
If this sentence contrasts with the previous sentence, you might use "however" or "on the other hand."
If it is a time sequence, use "next," "then," or consider using "first," "second," etc.
Don’t use the same transition too often. Also, don't forget the comma after the transition word and don't forget to put the subject of the sentence after the comma.

Choosing the Right Word

What makes using transitions improve your writing is that it forces you to explain the connections between your ideas. Ask yourself:

  1. What does the sentence before this one say?
  2. How does this sentence relate to that one?
  3. Scan the list for a transition that seems to fit best. You can also use these questions for help:

Does this sentence add information? Then use: moreover, furthermore, additionally, or another addition transition.

Does the sentence contrast or contradict? Use: however, on the other hand, in contrast, or another contrasting transition.

Are you writing something that happens in order? Use: next, then, or consider using time order like first, second,etc.

Does this sentence add evidence? Use: for example, consequently, for this reason, or another consequence transition.

Does the sentence emphasize an idea? Use: obviously, especially, as a rule, particularly or another emphasizing transition.

Tips to Remember

1. Use a variety of transition words, not the same one.

2. Put a comma after the transition word.

3. Put the subject of the sentence after the comma.

Choosing the Right Word to Start, End, and Transition Topics
Choosing the Right Word to Start, End, and Transition Topics

Transition Word List

Words to Show Contrast
Words to Add to an Idea
Words That Show Consequence
Words That Add Emphasis
although
additionally
accordingly
admittedly
besides
also
as a result
above all
conversely
again
because
as a rule
however
as well as
consequently
as usual
in contrast
besides
due to
assuredly
in comparison
comparatively
for this reason
certainly
instead
consequently
for this purpose
chiefly
likewise
coupled with
hence
especially
nevertheless
correspondingly
otherwise
granted
on the one hand…on the other hand
furthermore
since
generally speaking
on the contrary
in addition
so then
for the most part
other than
indeed
subsequently
in this situation
outside of
in fact
therefore
no doubt (undoubtedly)
rather
identically
thereupon
obviously
similarly
likewise
this is why
of course
yet
moreover
thus
ordinarily
still
similarly
wherefore
particularly
whereas
whereas
 
singularly
 
 
 
unquestionably
 
 
 
usually

2. Use a Variety of Words When Citing Examples

 
 
 
 
especially
for one thing
in particular (particularly)
specifically
chiefly
as an illustration
markedly
this can be seen in
for/as an example
illustrated with/by
namely
such as
for instance
in this case
including
 
Use any of these alternatives to add clarity and variety to your writing.
Easy Ways to Improve Your Essay
Easy Ways to Improve Your Essay

3. Use Different Words to Order Events and Sequence Time

 
 
 
 
first... second... third...
currently
with this in mind
in turn
generally... furthermore... finally
during
for now
later on
in the first place... also... lastly
earlier
immediately
meanwhile
to be sure... additionally... lastly
eventually
in the meantime
next
first... just in the same way... finally
finally
for the time being
then
basically... similarly... as well as
first of all
the next step
simultaneously
afterward
to begin with
in conclusion
soon
at first
in the first place
in time
while
Use a wide variety of words to show how ideas are chronologically related.

4. Use Interesting Words When Summarizing

 
 
 
 
after all
in any event
in other words
on balance
all in all
in brief
in short
that is (that is to say)
all things considered
in conclusion
in brief
therefore
briefly
in essence
in summary
to put it differently
by and large
indeed
in the final analysis
to sum up
hence
on the whole
in the long run
to summarize
in any case
overall
namely
finally
Use a wide variety of words to sum up the point you are making.

Example

Short paragraph without transition words:

Cell phones have changed our family communication for the worse. Parents complain their teenagers spending too much time on their phone. Teenagers are annoyed that they can't get the attention of their parents who are always working or shopping on their phones. We need to make some changes.

Adding transition words:

Generally speaking, cell phones have changed our family communication for the worse. Obviously, parents complain about their teenagers spending too much time on their phones. Moreover, teenagers are annoyed that they can't get the attention of their parents who are always working or shopping on their phones. Unquestionably, we need to make some changes.

Improving Your Writing Over Time

Just following my tips to add transition words to your essay can often make your essay much better and will probably improve your grade. Inevitably, as soon as I tell my classes about this technique their writing improves dramatically. Better yet, the more you use transition words in revision, the more you begin to add that technique to your writing during the first draft.

Why does that help? It begins training you to think about how your ideas relate to one another and helps you to write essays that are deeper, more connected and logical. If you've found this technique helpful, or if you have another sentence starting technique, please add your comments below to help out other writers.

How many times to you revise an essay?

See results

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    • profile image

      Jill 11 days ago

      Great advice well laid out

      Thanks

    • profile image

      Dawood 12 days ago

      Hi, Virginia!

      Awesome Article, no words for your well-crafted words.

    • profile image

      Hasan 2 weeks ago

      Thanks for all

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 3 weeks ago from United States

      Hi, Thomas--I'm glad you asked. I have over 100 articles to help people improve their writing, including ideas for proofreading your own essay and questions you can use to have other people evaluate your essay to help you improve your writing. I also have an article on effective sentences and grammar help for using punctuation marks. You can find these articles by looking at my profile page or following the links on the side with my name. In working with non-native writers, I find the most important editing technique is to have several people look at your essay carefully and to read the essay out loud as you proofread. My final best tip is to focus on one or two rules a time as you go through the paper. Then you can make sure that you have corrected for that error carefully. Hopefully, your instructor can help guide you to know which rules are most important for you to focus on first. I'm afraid I don't know of any websites where you can submit your work to get help.

    • profile image

      Thomas 4 weeks ago

      Hey, great article!

      Do you have any suggestions for non-native english speakers that are working on an english essay? Especially regarding proof reading?

      Are there any platforms where one can get help from others?

      Thanks!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 4 weeks ago from United States

      Hi Mahmoud! I have over 100 articles on writing that are published here on Letterpile. You can find help with grammar and also on how to structure sentences and essays. Look at my profile or follow the links to the side that have my name.

    • profile image

      Mahmoud 4 weeks ago

      Thanks. That was great and useful. Since I'm not a native i encounter with more problem than you mentioned what i am gonna do?

    • profile image

      Ana 4 weeks ago

      Absolutely amazing tips!

      Thank you!

    • profile image

      Sam 2 months ago

      Nice article Virginia, I have gained from it a lot especially the transition words. being a newbie at content writing this article helps.

    • profile image

      himabindu 3 months ago

      Hi Virginia Kearney,

      Thank you so much for the quick response.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 3 months ago from United States

      Hi, Himabindu- "So," is generally used as a coordinating conjunction (others are "and," "but," "or," and "yet") and therefore would generally not be used correctly to start a sentence, but rather as a way to join two sentences. Example:

      The bookstore didn't have what we wanted, so we went elsewhere.

      However, in your example, you are using "so" as an interjection in a conversational style sentence. You could vary this by saying:

      Actually, I don't...

      In reality, I don't

      Furthermore, I really don't...

      The truth is that I really don't...

      In the second example, you are using "as" in an introductory phrase, which is another way to vary your sentences besides just using a sentence starter transition word. When you are trying to decide how to write a sentence differently, you need to decide what that sentence is doing. Is it adding to what you've already said? Then use words like "Additionally" or "Furthermore." Is it contradicting or changing the direction? Use "However," "In contrast" or "On the other hand." In your two examples, you are talking about the cause, so the best choices are "Because," "Since":

      Since this book is not useful to me, I really don't want it on my shelf.

      Because this book wasn't useful to me, I don't want it on my shelf.

      You can also vary the meaning a bit with sentences like this:

      In general, this book wasn't really useful to me, so I don't want it on my shelf.

    • profile image

      Himabindu 3 months ago

      hi.. this post is very useful. If I have to use transition words that means, 'so' or 'as' or 'that's why' what I have to use? For example, I say " So, I don't want to use this in my book" or " As this book is not useful to me, I don't want to see this on my shelf." If I have to say the same sentences in a different way, how can I say?

      Please help.

    • profile image

      Fatima Roque 3 months ago

      Thank you so much, this will help me in my IELTS preparation especially in writing and speaking as well. :)

    • profile image

      Ronald Cole 3 months ago

      This information has helped me a great deal. I have never been one to write much using transition words has always been a weakest.

      Thanks

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 3 months ago from United States

      Hi "Hannah Baker," I'm so glad to hear that you are writing a book. My teenage daughter is also a writer and I think it is really wonderful that anyone can now write something and post it online for others to read. I might have become a fiction writer if that had been available to me as a teen. Thank you for spending the time to know that I've helped you. I teach college students but I have found many younger people are also looking at my articles and I'm thinking about creating some information just for them. I'd love to hear what younger people want to know about how to write better.

    • profile image

      Hannah Baker 3 months ago

      My name is not really Hannah Baker though, just a cover up. I'm a teen I and love writting. I'm recently stuck on a book that I'm writting, called "The Chosen One," and I was getting for frustrated because I kept using the same words or phrases. I ended up finding this website and it really helped me, so thank you very much.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 4 months ago from United States

      Hi Jodah! I'm often trying to force myself to use some new transition words in my writing as well. Along with the words I put in this article, you can also use different kinds of phrases at the start of a sentence. I especially like gerund phrases like "Walking down the street," "Thinking about my children," or "Writing in a new way."

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 4 months ago from Queensland Australia

      This is very helpful Virginia. I never start sentences in a paragraph with the same word, and do use transition words, but I probably only use the same favourites over and over (about 10) as you mentioned in your comment to Bianca.

    • profile image

      Hammad 5 months ago

      Solved my biggest problem as I always tend to use same transitions again and again in a paragraph. Thanks, I appreciate your effort.

    • profile image

      Collin 5 months ago

      this really helped thanks

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 5 months ago from United States

      Bianca--I generally find the adding and contrasting words are the most useful for me. In fact, I think that when you start to use this technique that most people pick 6-10 favorite words and use them most of the time.

    • profile image

      Bianca di'Angelo 5 months ago

      Thank you for this. I'm writing an essay on how advertising affects youth but I keep needing to pause every few words to try and find just the right one. Another or additionally... overall or in conclusion. I think the most helpful ones for me were the words to add ideas

    • profile image

      Eriurhukpe 5 months ago

      This is a lifeline for me.thank you

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 5 months ago from United States

      Michaela--Whether this will work as a subject for your paper depends on your assignment. You could do "legends about elves" and find evidence on that.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 5 months ago from United States

      Hi, Liv-I have two articles that could help you. One is about writing a thesis sentence and the other is about writing topic sentences in paragraphs. Often, these sentence starters can be used to write better topic sentences because they can help you link your ideas and show how one topic sentence either adds or contrasts to the ideas before.

    • profile image

      Liv 5 months ago

      I don't understand how to start the topic sentence of the paragraph, so I suggest that this page should include starting words for topic sentences in paragraphs

    • profile image

      Jorge Oliveira 5 months ago

      Thank you so much for showing me how to use transitions with accuracy!

    • profile image

      Kendall Kincaid 7 months ago

      Thank you for the help!

    • profile image

      Kayla Miller 7 months ago

      Thank you soo much for the Article! That will come in handy in writing assignments

    • profile image

      Russell Morrison 7 months ago

      Reading this has given me some new words to start my paragraphs with. Thank you!

    • profile image

      Oscar 7 months ago

      This helped me improve my writing.Thanks :)

    • profile image

      wrong your all wrong im a book writer 7 months ago

      your all wrong im a book writer

    • profile image

      Tawana 7 months ago

      Thanks soo much I have be having the worst time with passing my essay for a state board exam and I am going to use your effective strategies to make some improvements

    • profile image

      Daniel 7 months ago

      Thank You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 7 months ago from United States

      Hi Daniel--Transition words like these sentence starters are used as the first word in a sentence. Often, they have a comma after them, just as I show in this sentence. Here is a sample using some really simple sentences:

      Global warming is increasing. Scientists say ice caps are melting quickly. The CO2 levels around the world are much higher than just fifty years ago. We need to do something now.

      With transition words:

      Unfortunately, global warming is increasing at a rapid rate. In fact, scientists say ice caps are melting quickly. Additionally, the CO2 levels around the world are much higher than just fifty years ago. With this in mind, we need to do something now.

    • profile image

      Daniel 7 months ago

      I have a question. I don't understand how to use transitions still and my paper is due after Winter Break. Please help?

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 8 months ago from United States

      Hi Dustin! I'm happy that my work has helped you. Please check out my other articles on different types of essays for more help.

    • profile image

      Dustin 8 months ago

      Thx this helped me out for my essay you will be the only site I will use .

    • profile image

      B.Mack 9 months ago

      Awesome article, I printed it out to use as a reference.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 10 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very useful article for improving one's style of writing. Thanks for sharing this wonderful knowledge.

    • profile image

      Shirly 11 months ago

      This is a good website for kids

    • profile image

      Lachlan 11 months ago

      Thanks u helped me with my assignment

    • herownwings profile image

      Emily 11 months ago from Oregon

      I love the charts; they really lay things out concisely. Thanks for the helpful information. I'm glad to add another specific tool to my writing toolbox!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 11 months ago from United States

      Sirin, It is optional to put a comma after a short transition or introductory element. For example, I can put a comma in this sentence after "example" but the meaning is clear if I don't, so it is all right to leave the comma out. However, you are not wrong to add the comma and it often makes the sentence clearer. Here are some examples and you can decide whether the comma is helpful or not:

      Nevertheless, I believe she is correct in her assumption.

      On the other hand, what they think is also correct.

    • profile image

      sirin 11 months ago

      Hello,you said that it is important to put a comma after each transition word,but i found in a book i have read that, of Macdwell about British history,he uses no commat after each transition he put.I want to know please :is this permmited in writing or no.And,in the same time, we can't say he is wrong since he is an auther and he publishes books.thank you in advance

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 11 months ago from United States

      Hi, Ahmed! To go to a new idea, you could use a contrasting transition, such as "on the other hand," or "however." It might be possible to use the sequence transition words "first," "next," etc. if you are doing something that happens in time or in space. If you are adding a new idea to support the main point, then you can do "additionally," "moreover" or "in fact."

    • profile image

      Ahmed 11 months ago

      Interesting, but which words used to start new topic / idea .

    • profile image

      Mustafa 12 months ago

      thank you so much for doing this it helped me a lot and I'm sure I'll be visiting this page in the future

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 12 months ago from United States

      Congratulations on starting to learn English, Maria! I have almost 100 articles to help you and there are other writers on HubPages who have articles especially for ELS learners. Good luck! Learning English takes work but I know you can do it!

    • profile image

      maria 12 months ago

      I'm beginners .I wanna to learn English as second language .

      Ithink these words help me a lot.

      thank you

    • profile image

      Isabella 12 months ago

      Omg this helps/helped me so much with writing my essays.So happy I found this website and thank you for creating it

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 12 months ago from United States

      So glad this helps you Jackie. Check out my other articles for even more help and ideas! Every year, I get more ideas from my students to incorporate into my site. Teaching is always about learning as well as giving out information.

    • profile image

      Jackie 12 months ago

      Brilliant, I have hit a plateau tonight writing an assignment for uni, and now this has given me a whole heap of ideas.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 14 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Very professional article, Virginia. Your wise advice and list of words is very helpful.

    • profile image

      Juan 14 months ago

      Thanks for this post it really helped me.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 14 months ago from United States

      Tina--thanks so much for your comment! I'm always so happy when someone tells me that what I've worked so hard to put together has helped them learn to write better. Now that all of us communicate so much through the Internet, I think learning to write clearly is even more important than ever.

    • profile image

      Tina Kozma 14 months ago

      This website is the only website I use when writing essays. In fact, I have this website on my desktop so I can easily access it. Thank you so much for putting this information together!

    • jupiter justice profile image

      Asher Socrates 18 months ago from Los Angeles, CA

      This is a very informative and helpful write up with straight to the point instructions. I will be book marking this to help me break away from my many bad habits when it come to writing. Thank you very much!

    • profile image

      Elvis 18 months ago

      This really helped thanx

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 18 months ago from United States

      So glad that you think these will help your friend JG. I have a lot of second language readers. I've taught students from many different countries and, in fact, that is how I've come up with some of my material. I would see something that my students were having trouble doing and then tried to figure out a way to help them write better in that area

    • jgshorebird profile image

      jgshorebird 18 months ago from Southeastern U.S.

      Great information. Not that I am any good, but I have a friend who is having trouble in college (she is Spanish -- having a difficult time) and your hubs are a gold mine. Thanks.

    • profile image

      Emily 19 months ago

      Thank you so much. This will help me with my AP class. (:

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 20 months ago from United States

      Thanks so much! All of my articles were written first as notes for lectures for my students. They are the ones who taught me what students want to know. My whole goal is to make writing easier and more accessible. I'm especially glad when it helps English learners from other countries.

    • profile image

      Kamaraju Pulugurtha 20 months ago from Khammam, India.

      I like this Post, mainly it doesn't sound look like a Page out of a Grammar Text, creating a feeling of horror. I find it hospitable, offering bits and bits of advice.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 24 months ago from United States

      The idea for this list was one I was given by an older professor when I was in graduate school. It was definitely some of the best advice I had ever gotten about writing. I love the fact that the idea is so simple but it really makes a huge difference in the sound of a person's writing. I've added a lot of words to the list over the years and added the rules of how to use these in sentences.

    • profile image

      Callen C 24 months ago

      This post is very helpful and practical! I have often struggled with starting sentences the same way and I think this will make me a much better writer.

    • profile image

      Matt Dulany 24 months ago

      This is great information. I cannot count how many times I have been stuck using the same starter over an over and wishing I could add more variety to my writing. Extremely helpful ideas and lists of words.

    • Gary Malmberg profile image

      Gary Malmberg 2 years ago from Concon, Chile

      Love this. I'm saving it for the future. Two thumbs yup.

    • cherylone profile image

      Cheryl Simonds 2 years ago from Connecticut

      Great hub! The reference lists are going to be a favorite of mine from now on.

    • DavidCombs profile image

      DavidCombs 2 years ago

      Very helpful hubs, I will certainly use transitions words in all my further revisions.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 3 years ago from United States

      Just Rodney--You are right about the differences in language. What I teach at my University is standard American English. Since I was born and raised in California, I speak and write in the "standard dialect" of the U.S. movie and T.V. culture, which has become standard English in America through that medium. One of the reasons that English has become such a universal language is that it is very adaptable and tends to allow people to add words from other languages, as well as add different ways of expressing thoughts. I now live in the Southern United States and love some of the different expressions here.

    • Just_Rodney profile image

      Rodney Fagan 3 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Well written Hub, although English is spoken and written in a vast number of Countries; there are various grammatic, spelling and other subtle usages that come into play!

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 3 years ago from the short journey

      As always, great stuff from you. I enjoy your hubs and like learning from them. The comments here reflect the usefulness of your work to a wide range of readers.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 3 years ago from United States

      Thanks Lynette! I'm so glad you are working for your GED. It is not easy to finish everything but it will certainly be worth it.

    • profile image

      Lynette Scott 3 years ago

      I have just been given your list in my GED class. Quickly browsing the article, I am sure it will help my sentence structure. Here is one suggestion I would like to add for you.

      Use "Remember," instead of "Don't forget,"

      As in from your article "Remember, the comma after the transition word, and remember to put the subject of the sentence after the comma.

      Thanks Lynette

      lynettescott@comcast.net

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 3 years ago from United States

      Hi Jade--Your example shows another way of starting sentences effectively, and that is by using a descriptive phrase. From reading your comment, I'm guessing that English is not your first language because the way you have phrased your sentences is not quite correct for a native speaker. However your point is excellent. Instead of putting the subject first in a sentence all the time (which English speakers generally do when talking because that makes the meaning of the sentence clearer), you can put a descriptive phrase or even part of the predicate of the sentence at the beginning. I will reword your sentence a bit to make it more correct in standard English:

      One bright, sunny summer day, the son shone brilliantly through the clear class window.

      Here are some other examples (notice how these short sentences jump out!):

      Flashing an angry eye at me, the horse ran quickly past and jumped over a fence.

      Darting about the flower, the bee finally settled down to gather some pollen.

    • profile image

      Jade 3 years ago

      It's really good, but on the other hand you should add more sentence starter like: One bright sunny summer day the sun shone on the glass clear window. Also do you think that was good?

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 3 years ago from United States

      Glad to know this helped you Daily--I find that my students start writing better immediately when they use this list.

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
      Author

      Virginia Kearney 3 years ago from United States

      So glad to know this helps you devsmilez. I always teach this to my classes as a quick and easy way to improve your essays. I see dramatic improvement when students use these.

    • joeykeefe profile image

      Joey Keefe 3 years ago from Albuquerque, New Mexico

      Interesting article. Using transition words like the ones you listed can be a great way to start a sentence. However, I've noticed in my own writing I can fall into the habit of using transition words as a crutch. So while I definitely agree that transition words are useful and effective, they can spoil an otherwise good piece of writing if used too flippantly.

    • Aplethora23 profile image

      AngPow 3 years ago from North Cali

      Wow. Thank you for the list of transition words, VirginiaLynne. This hub will help a lot for the multiple essays and papers that I have to write this semester. Thank you for sharing.

    • profile image

      Brittany 4 years ago

      I have to write an essay on sports and my first paragraph has to include the author, title, publisher, etc, as well as a summary of the main points and ideas. I cannot figure out how I should start this essay. Please help!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      Good point Tex. What emphasize in my class is that you need to pay attention to how your ideas connect with one another. Usually you are adding, contrasting or comparing. Transition words help you make that distinction clear. In spoken language we often use tone, voice and gestures to make those connections, but in written language we need to use transition words and punctuation.

    • texshelters profile image

      texshelters 4 years ago from Mesa, Arizona

      Certainly, paying attention to transitions is important. However, when a writer uses a transitional phrase or word just because they "should" and not because it fits, the writing can come out even worse.

      Peace,

      Tex Shelters

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      Good question aya. Here are some ideas: On Saturday and Sunday; add another transition word like, "Sometimes on the weekend"; change the "on" to another transition word like "During the weekend"; switch your sentence around so that "on the weekend" comes at the end, such as "We love to go sailing on the weekend" instead of "On the weekend, we love to go sailing"; and try a variation like "Weekends." Hope that helps!

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      aya 4 years ago

      what other words rather then ''on the weekend'' can we use in a recount on the start of a sentence

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      Jennifer 4 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Virginia,

      What a wonderful idea and thank you. Your hub is very helpful.

      Jennifer

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      Paul Richard Kuehn 4 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

      Virginia,

      You have some very useful tips for using words to begin sentences. Sometimes I get into the habit of using the same word too many times in a paragraph, and I do know it is the wrong thing to do. I'm not teaching writing to my EFL 5th graders this year, but in the past I have tried to steer them away from using the same word too many times in a paragraph. Voted up and sharing.

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      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      Hi travel man --thanks for coming by. This is my most popular Hub and I can really tell when my students start doing this in their writing--it automatically makes their writing better--such an easy trick too!

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      Ireno Alcala 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      This is a very helpful hub, especially to a non-English writer (I'm a Filipino.) like me.

      Although, we studied English since pre-school years, I still had to translate what I'm thinking in my vernacular language into English.

      Thanks for sharing what you're teaching to your class here on HP.

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      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      Glad you liked these Alecia--I always keep these next to me as I write too!

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      Alecia Murphy 4 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      I always have trouble thinking of transitions when writing. Sometimes I feel like I am repeating myself when I write but don't notice until I revise. Great tips!

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      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      Celina--I always tell students that this list is like "gold" for writing. I can't believe how much it improves my student's tone and style when they use it.

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      madeleinescheve 4 years ago

      Great tips and words on improving writing. I have not heard of some before such as "starting each paragraph with a new word." That could significantly improve my writing instantly. Thank you very much for providing this.

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      Hannah Heath 4 years ago from Minneapolis, Minnesota

      This will be so helpfu lto add variety to all my essays. Sometimes I get stuck on how to transition to a new idea or how to introduce a new paragraph, so these should come in handy!

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      CelinaWeemhoff 5 years ago

      This article actually helped me quite a bit. I have a bad habit of using the same words a lot in my essays, so it would be great for me to have a list of different words I could use instead of using the same ones over and over again. Also, this will probably help me with starting my sentences. I generally have a hard time starting sentences, but it will be easier for me if I have a list of words I could use to start my sentences with.

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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Helpful hub, will be using this if I ever need to! Thanks!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image
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      Virginia Kearney 5 years ago from United States

      Millionaire Tips--Glad you stopped by. Just remembering to start every sentence differently does an amazing change to a person's writing style. It was very interesting that I saw this quite dramatically in my students this last year. Their writing seems more mature and professional overnight.

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      Shasta Matova 5 years ago from USA

      This is very helpful. I hadn't thought about starting each sentence in a paragraph with a different word.

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      Jamie 5 years ago

      Interesting! I am quite weak using transition word. It really helps. Thanks.