Scholastic.com Writing Workshop: Persuasive Writing

 Worksheet 1: Making Connections mini-lesson 

Transitional words are used to show how ideas are connected. Transitions take your reader from one thought to another. More importantly, if you don't make connections between your ideas, the reader will probably insert their own thoughts—not always a good idea. In persuasive writing, it's important that you lead the reader in the direction you want them to go—don't allow them to make their own connections.

Here's a list of commonly used transitional words and phrases:

and to sum up
but because
or to sum up
while consequently
although first
unlike next
while sometimes
however surely
in other words on the other hand

Transitional words are very useful in persuasive writing because they help you show both sides of the arguments.

Let's say that you've just finished reading about the Iditarod and want to use that race as a basis for your persuasive writing. In particular, you plan to focus on how some people think that the animals are treated cruelly.

One of the first things you need to do is show both sides of the argument.

Animal rights groups say the Iditarod race is cruel to dogs and should be discontinued. Mushers, on the other hand, say their dogs are treated better than most animals and are bred to race.

In this example, on the other hand, is the transitional phrase.


Student name: _____________________________   Date: _________________

Select the most appropriate transition word or phrase for each sentence.

1. In an effort to cut down on discipline problems, our school has decided to require students to wear uniforms; most students are opposed to the idea.
a. of course
b. but

2. Many scholars believe that Amelia Earhardt was one of the most influential people in women's history; others feel that Susan B. Anthony played a more important role. a. unless b. however

3. The principal added additional detention time for students caught littering the school grounds; the campus became much cleaner almost overnight.
a. consequently
b. but

4. The Iditarod can be a grueling race; the dogs sometimes run for hours at a time without a break.
a. while
b. for instance

5. Jacob can't seem to get enough sugar, he loves cookies and cupcakes.
a. in particular
b. similarly

6. The new highway is scheduled to go through our backyard; we've decided to move.
a. therefore
b. next