When some students hear the word “essay” they may feel a little intimidated, but writing an essay doesn’t have to be scary at all. Essays take many forms, from answering a question on an exam to drafting a formal persuasive piece. Learning the basic format of an essay and practicing often helps students feel more confident when it’s time to write.
Time4Writing.com provides parents and educators with valuable tools to help children become better writers. There are many free writing resources on writing an essay as well as related writing topics that are the building blocks of essays, such as sentence writing and writing paragraphs. Specific topics include dialogues in narrative essays, sentence fluency and variety, and the ubiquitous compare and contrast essay. The articles provide information and guidance, while the activities encourage students to practice their skills using video lessons, standardized test prep materials, printable worksheets and quizzes, and interactive games. For more in-depth practice, a selection of eight-week essay writing courses are available for students in elementary, middle, and high school.
Free Writing Resources: Printables, Videos, Presentations, and Games
Researching Resources for Essays
Research resources can be, but not limited to, the Internet, books, maps, newspapers, magazines, and interviews with experts in the field. When using the Internet for research, you need to make sure you are using a reliable web site. Be aware of the dates of publication for books, newspapers, and magazines so that any information you get from them is up-to-date. Newspapers can serve as a good place to read about … Read More »
Writing the Introduction Paragraph
Writing a good introduction to an essay can hook the reader, creating a desire for more. That’s why it is important to craft the best introduction possible. A good introduction to a topic hints at what type of information the reader can expect in support of that topic. Writing a good introduction takes skill and practice, but getting the essay off to a great start will make the audience eager to keep reading. … Read More »
Writing a Thesis Statement
The thesis statement is what gives an essay direction. Knowing how to write a thesis statement — the topic, a claim about that topic, and three points to support it — can help a writer start an essay in the most clear and concise way. Not only does it help the writer organize subsequent information in the essay, but a strong thesis statement helps the reader understand the information that leads to the conclusion. … Read More »
The conclusion of an essay is as important as the introduction, with the two paragraphs considered the essay’s figurative “bookends.” While the first paragraph introduces the topic and makes a claim, the conclusion of an essay looks back at the claim with the benefit of supporting details, and shows how the point of the essay was made. It’s important for students to learn how to write a conclusion that finishes the work of the essay, and supports the main claim. … Read More »
Compare & Contrast
The comparative essay allows a writer to compare and contrast the features of two subjects (two people, two things, two places, two ideas, two results, etc.). Once the similarities and differences between the two subjects are researched and noted, the topic almost suggests itself, and the facts are at the writer’s fingertips. So the key to writing a compare and contrast essay is learning to do the research and organizing the information. … Read More »
Types of Essays
Learning the different types of essays allows a writer to choose the best way to make a point. Sometimes it may be better to explain facts with an expository essay than to compare and contrast two things. Another option, the persuasive essay, argues for a particular side, while a narrative essay describes one event or happening. These various types of essays become a writer’s tools for conveying information in the most appropriate way possible. … Read More »