By Lee Odell, Richard Vacca, Renee Hobbs, Judith L. Irvin, John E. Warriner

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Filling Up Space An effective way to organize a descriptive essay is by describing items according to their location. Using this spatial organization technique, you will start your description at a certain point and then move in a logical way around your subject. For example, if you were describing a dog, you might start with the dog’s face and then move along his body to his tail. Organize the description in your essay so that it moves ■ from top to bottom or bottom to top ■ from near to far or far to near ■ from left to right or right to left ■ from inside to out or outside to in Words Showing Spatial Organization next to across from between down up around close far near Picture This As you read the description on the next page, notice how author Jamaica Kincaid uses specific details and spatial organization when describing a child’s bedroom.

Later, as you put the steps in order, you can decide whether you have included more steps than your audience will need. Order Put Directions In Re-read the heading to the left. It does not make sense because it was written in the wrong order. Putting steps in the correct order helps your audience successfully follow your instructions. Most instructions are written in chronological (or time) order. They explain what comes first, what comes second, and so on. You can organize your list of steps by numbering each step to show its place in the process.

I only made it once. Yes. Fresh bread tastes great! Tying my shoes Do Yes, I’ve been doing it since I was four or five. No. I tie my shoes all the time. Because the assignment calls for something to do, not make, the student chose not to write about making bread. He settled on flying a kite as the more interesting topic of the two remaining. YOUR TURN Go to the Chapter Menu for an interactive activity. 60 Chapter 2 4 Choosing and Evaluating a Topic Make a list of possible topics for your instructions.

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