School Education system demands you to write an essay on some topics irrespective whether you are in grade 4 or grade 10. As far as I remember, writing an essay has always been a difficult task during my school days. That time I had no idea how to write a good essay. Nowadays, Google happens to be a universal tutor for every student who has to write an essay for homework assignment or term exam. In this Google-centric digital world, you still have to write an effective school to score better marks than your peers and get much-coveted “A” and verbal praise from your teachers for your essay writing effort. Now let us turn this dreaded task into a manageable fun activity. In this educative blog, you will learn 4 practical steps to write an effective school essay on any topic.
1. Understanding the topic
Whenever you are assigned an essay writing task, your first action should be directed towards understanding the topic in its entirety. Instead of worrying and stressing about ‘what to write’ you should focus on ‘what you know’ about the essay topic. In some tests, you have to choose one topic from three or four options given in a test. Before attempting to write anything, you should at least take 5 minutes to understand various topics given. Based on this preliminary assessment, you can pick one of them that you feel confident about. Now let us put this first practical step into action. Suppose you have to write an essay on ‘Pollution’ you should note down the following points on your rough sheet to get better understanding; » What is pollution? » Common observations » Real-life examples
2. Brainstorming ideas
Once you have picked an essay topic and decided you can write on it, the next important step is brainstorming some ideas or key points that you can include in your essay. To generate key ideas on a given issue you can use the following strategies. Remember at this stage you do not have to write full sentences, you just need to note down the main points. Also, you can organize your ideas using a diagram or rough outline to make things simpler.
> 5W – What, Why, Who, Where, When
This 5W technique can be used to analyse various aspects of a particular problem. For ‘Essay on Pollution’ a student can describe what pollution is, why pollution is caused, who is affected by pollution etc.
> PSB – Problem Solution Benefit
By using this strategy, you can write about the problem itself, possible solutions and benefits that will follow once the problem is solved. While writing an Essay on Topic ‘Corruption’, you can use this PSB approach to explain the problem of corruption first and then write on solutions and benefits related to this theme.
> DDR – Definition Description Relation
This approach will help student write about slightly complex themes such as ‘Moral values and school education.’ You can start writing with the definition of moral values, this can be followed by describing the importance of moral values in life and the relation between school education and moral values.
3. Structuring word-flow
Structuring is the most challenging part of the essay writing process. Some students get scared to start writing because of various psychological blocks. As a student, it is natural to be scared but with this practical step, you can create much-needed writing momentum and finish the task at hand. Broadly speaking, an essay can be structured into three main parts –introduction, body and conclusion.
The introduction is the first paragraph of the essay. As the name suggests, it introduces the main idea of the essay to the examiner or the reader. It is also meant to capture the reader’s attention and interest. In the process of writing a school essay, you should always keep in mind the following points to in order to write a good introduction.
- It should be short
- It should highlight the main theme
- It should contain a basic definition
- Proper context should also be given
- Some interesting facts and quotes can be written
The body of your essay is often called ‘the meat of the essay.’ The body is the section where you explain, describe or analyse the topic you have selected. You can write well-structured body of the essay based on all the ideas you have generated during previous Brainstorming step. If you noted down four key ideas in your rough outline or schematic diagram, then you will have four body paragraphs.
The final paragraph of the essay provides the conclusion. Under this section, you highlight the significance of the topic along with recommendations and suggestions and any special message you wish to convey to the reader. The last sentence in the conclusion paragraph should communicate that your essay has come to an end. A well-written conclusion should be balanced, thought-provoking and clear.
4. Enriching the essay
At this stage, you review your essay and enrich it with a few finishing touches to make it more readable and interesting. If you are submitting a pen and paper essay to your teacher, it is advisable to keep the following point in your mind.
- Read the entire essay twice before submitting it
- Check for any grammatical errors and spelling mistakes
- Underline or highlight important words and lines
If you have written essay on your computer, following pro tips can enrich your essay greatly.
- Remove all conjunctions (aren’t, don’t, couldn’t, etc.)
- Enrich your essay with good vocabulary words. You can replace regular words with more academic words to jazz up your essay but do not overdo it.
- Print out your essay, read it, and mark it up. You will notice more errors when reading it this way than on a laptop
- Have elder siblings or parents read it. A second set of eyes comes handy to catch any mistakes you missed.
- Read it out loud few times. This will help with grammar mistakes. If it sounds silly, do correct it accordingly.
- Add a few images and diagrams in the body of the essay if possible.
Having the ability to write effective essays will become increasingly important as you progress through school and college. If you follow above steps presented above, you will gradually develop the ability to write clear and compelling essays. With this essay writing method, you can prepare essays before the exam on common topics to score that much desired “A” grade. Happy Writing !!
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