I was interested in the transition words.
So I looked for them in one of the links Grace posted, and found this.
like, similar to, also, unlike, similarly, in the same way, likewise, again, compared to, in contrast, in like manner, contrasted with, on the contrary, however, although, yet, even though, still, but, nevertheless, conversely, at the same time, regardless, despite, while, on the one hand ? on the other hand.
For example, you might have a topic sentence like one of these:
Compared to Pepper's, Amante is quiet.
Like Amante, Pepper's offers fresh garlic as a topping.
Despite their different locations (downtown Chapel Hill and downtown Carrboro), Pepper's and Amante are both fairly easy to get to.
We could assign the students to write one sample sentence for each transition as homework.