What is Spatial Order? Description and Examples

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Our topic for today is about spatial order! For this guide, I will tackle the definition of spatial order. Moreover, I will teach you how to write one and provide you examples to illustrate what I mean. Fasten your seatbelt, for the class is in session!

This is the flow of my guide:

   What Is a Descriptive Essay?

Let’s have a short review of descriptive essays, as spatial order essays are useful in the latter. Descriptive essays, according to the Purdue OWL, are defined as a genre in which students are tasked to describe an object, experience, a person, and many more.

In a descriptive essay, you have to paint a picture of what you are trying to convey to the reader. Your reader has to have a mental image of what you are trying to describe.

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   What Is Spatial Order?

In spatial order essays, objects are arranged according to their respective positions from your perspective. You can start from the left or to the right, it’s up to you.

Let’s say that Object #1 is located to the left while Object #2 is in front of the former. See what I mean?

Your objective is to provide your reader a mental image of where the objects are located. Simply put, you have to be the visual tour guide.

   List of Signal Words for Spatial Order Essays

There are various signal words that are useful in writing your spatial order essays. Here are some signal words for you:

  1. To the left
  2. To the right
  3. Between
  4. Below
  5. Under
  6. Behind
  7. In front
  8. Parallel to
  9. Adjacent to
  10. Across
  11. To the side
  12. Over
  13. There
  14. Beyond
  15. Center
  16. Middle
  17. Inside
  18. Outside
  19. Nearby
  20. Around

Although this is not a comprehensive list of signal words, these words are commonly seen in spatial order essays. Nevertheless, please take note of these signal words that signifies the location of an object.

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   Spatial Order Essay Outline

I will be creating an outline to help you in writing your spatial order essay. As always, this is only a basic outline. It is subject to change depending on your preferences.

Let us pretend that we are observing the objects you see in a dining room.


  1. Object #1 (Ex: wall)
  2. Object #2 (Ex: picture frames)


  1. Object #1 (Ex: cabinet filled with porcelain)
  2. Object #2 (Ex: large vase)


  1. Object #1 (Ex: table)
  2. Object #2 (Ex: Chairs)
  3. Object #3 (Ex: Plates of food)

Do you see what I did there?

An outline helps if you want your thoughts to be organized, or if you want your essay to have a consistent flow.

   How to Write a Spatial Order Essay?

I will be teaching you the basics of writing a spatial order essay. Yes, this tutorial is caters to beginners of spatial order writing.

1Ask yourself!

Simply put, brainstorm! What do you want to write about? Do you like to describe your room? Or a big city in your imagination? It’s your call.


References can be your own photos or from the internet, even your own drawings!

If it’s your drawing, make sure it is related. A drawing of your own anime character is not counted, unless that character is part of a scene (Ex: City or inside a shop)

If it’s the latter, then you can write about it from that character’s perspective. Write about what he/she is seeing.

References are there to inspire you and to guide you.

Note: If you are describing your room, and you are IN your room… no need to take a picture.


Again, this is to organize your thoughts and the flow of your essay.

Stick to one location at a time. If you choose “right”, then focus on the said location first.


Have your list of signal words beside you. You will need it.

Don’t try to use sophisticated vocabulary, unless you know how to use them properly!

Don’t forget to edit if you see mistakes in your essay.

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It’s time to write examples of spatial order essays. I will keep things simple just for you. Let’s start with a topic… I’ll write about the objects I see in front of my study table!

“On the far right corner of my study table, there is a five-layer drawer with a faded Mickey Mouse as its design. On its right sat my sibling’s dusty pink dollhouse. A two-foot black electric fan is placed just beside the dollhouse. My functioning black laptop is located just next to it, in a vain effort to cool off the device. My phone enclosed in a blue protective case and a black fine-toothed comb are nearby. My unzipped gray laptop is leaning on a row of books like a rag doll.

Behind the aforementioned items are a row of books- textbooks, manga, fiction, and non-fiction. Their colorful spines decorated my study table with life. My bubble wrapped wooden sword is on top of the row of books. My pocket power supply decorated in white and green lays next to my wooden sword. A purple hairbrush is right next to it, followed by a stack of papers. A book about political theories and my furry frog pencil case lay on top of the papers.”

Okay, that was longer than I thought. The length does not matter unless your professor specified a word count. This is going to be our second example. I’m going to describe the objects I see in my room!

“In front of me is my wide wooden study table spanning from my window until about two feet away from the door. A faded Mickey Mouse drawer and a pink dollhouse sat on my study table. My study table is decorated with books I’ve acquired throughout the years. Above the study table is a wooden platform. The platform is adorned with a row of books. A foot above the row of books is my clock, hooked properly on the white wall. In front of the books are two plastic figures of ponies. The first figure is shorter. The color of its mane is a vibrant shade of pink, violet, and yellow. The second is taller by an inch or two. The blue and pink locks of mane are neatly tied in a braid. A row of seven picture frames are beside the tall action figure. Under the table is a huge purple container packed with old clothes. Above the cover of the container are pillows wrapped in a protective transparent cover.

To my left is a three-foot dark brown cabinet containing my sibling’s activity books. An assortment of toys adorned the top of the cabinet. A glass bedroom table is right next to it. A large blue container filled with my costumes and props for cosplay sat beside it. My red-eared sliders are in an aquarium next to the container. The latter is supported with a steel platform. Below the platform is a blue electric fan, a trash can is stationed right beside it.

To my right is a wooden cabinet constructed between a plastic five-layer drawer and a dressing table. A miniature plastic drawer containing keys and accessories is displayed at the left corner of the dressing table. On the other hand, an apple green chest containing a pouch and trinkets is located at the right corner. A long rectangular mirror is suspended on the wall just above the dressing table. It is situated between two Styrofoam stars.”

There goes my second example!

For beginners, you can try to describe your room or your study table. If you have a picture of your favorite place, you can start with that too.

I would like to say: congratulations! You have reached the end of my guide.

Now you know that spatial order essays are spatial in their own way. You can describe your favorite place or your room using spatial organization. You can paint a picture using words.

I believe it takes time and practice to master this type of essay. Remember to keep learning! Learning doesn’t stop. Good luck on your assignments!

See you next time, dear readers!

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