Posted by Christy Williams on April 28th, 2016
Introductions and conclusions are perhaps the most important parts of written responses. They frame the writer’s thoughts for readers. A well written conclusion also ties a writer’s thoughts together. It summarizes the material and closes the conversation between writer and reader. Though highly important, the composition of a conclusion can be the most difficult part of the composition for writers. Helping your students write strong conclusions can be accomplished through the use of simple steps and strategies. The WRAP (What, Return, Align, Propose) approach will give students a simple template for success.
WRAP is an acronym that students can use for writing strong conclusions. Through the application of each step, students build conclusions that give the writing a sense of completion. The WRAP process also helps writers to stress the importance of a particular theme and leave a final impression on the reader.
What – Ask So what?”
Asking “so what?” tells readers why the paper was important. Answering the “so what?” shares with readers how the information is meaningful or useful. Writers should ask themselves “so what” with the response guiding the craft of the closing.
Return – Return to the initial themes.
Returning to the theme(s) that are present within the introduction is a way to bring the reader full circle. This can be accomplished by mentioning key words or other parallels from the introduction.
Align – Align the key concepts.
Instead of merely summarizing, synthesize the concepts. Show readers how the various points and examples fit together. Explain how all of the information aligns with the theme.
Propose – Propose next thoughts.
Propose a solution, call to action or question for further consideration. Give readers something more to think about, whether broader implications or creating new meaning altogether. Writers are challenged to create a thought provoking closing that compels readers to do, feel or think.
Writing conclusions can be a difficult task. However, through specific steps and strategies, the process can be easier. Helping your students understand this notion will help them develop confidence in their writing. As you work with students on composing their conclusions, teach them that three things should be accomplished in an effective closing: 1) stress the importance of the theme, 2) give the writing a sense of completion, and 3) leave a final impression on the reader. Remind students to WRAP (What, Return, Align, Propose) it up at the close of their writing.