Types of transitions

Types of transitions

I can use transition words to improve the flow and clarity of my writing.

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Types of transitions

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In this lesson, students learn about and practice using different types of transition words and phrases. They will learn that transitions allow the reader to anticipate the kind of information they’ll learn. They’ll learn that it’s important to use these words in their writing to make their writing clearer to readers.

Common core standards


Learning Objective

Students will be able to use appropriate transitions to clarify the relationships among ideas and concepts.


To begin, have students review the ways in which writers can organize their writing. Have them share their ideas with the class. Students might mention paragraphs, a specific structure, an outline, etc. After this review, students practice writing their own organized paragraphs about winter weather. Explain the importance of transitions in writing. Transitions are like a GPS, letting the reader know where the author is going! Ask students what transition words or phrases they already know.


Begin by going over transitions that show order/sequence, then show students transitions that show time. Have students write a paragraph using at least two of these transitions. Next, go over transitions that show examples or specify a point and transitions that add information. After this, explain that some transitions show similarities or differences and cause and effect. Students will practice using these, by adding sentences to the ones shown on the board. For example, the sentence might be, “I really like to eat vegetables to stay healthy.” Students might add the sentence, “Similarly, I try to eat fruit to get a lot of vitamin C.” Finally, have students read the passage and fill in the blanks by dragging the transitions to the correct place.


Check student understanding with ten questions. Students will determine which transition should be used in a sentence, which transition should be used for a specific effect, and categorize transition words by their effect.


Students write a paragraph about their favorite hobby using at least five different transition words from at least 3 different categories they learned about in this lesson. Then have them swap with a classmate and highlight the transition words/phrases.

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