Notes On Writing A Persuasive Essay

  • Describe and then refute the key points of the opposing view.

Concluding Paragraph

  • Restate and reinforce the thesis and supporting evidence.

2. Drafting the Persuasive Essay

When writing the initial draft of a persuasive essay, consider the following suggestions:

  • The introductory paragraph should have a strong “hook” that grabs the reader’s attention. Open with an unusual fact or statistic, a question or quotation, or an emphatic statement. For example: “Driving while talking on a cell phone, even hands-free, is the equivalent of driving drunk.”
  • The thesis statement should leave no doubts about the writer’s position.
  • Each body paragraph should cover a separate point, and the sentences of each paragraph should offer strong evidence in the form of facts, statistics, quotes from experts, and real-life examples.

The Secret to Good Paragraph Writing

  • Consider various ways to make the argument, including using an analogy, drawing comparisons, or illustrating with hypothetical situation (e.g., what if, suppose that…).
  • Don’t assume the audience has in-depth knowledge of the issue. Define terms and give background information.
  • The concluding paragraph should summarize the most important evidence and encourage the reader to adopt the position or take action. The closing sentence can be a dramatic plea, a prediction that implies urgent action is needed, a question that provokes readers to think seriously about the issue, or a recommendation that gives readers specific ideas on what they can do.

3. Revising the Persuasive Essay

In the revision phase, students review, modify, and reorganize their work with the goal of making it the best it can be. Keep these considerations in mind:

  • Does the essay present a firm position on the issue, supported by relevant facts, statistics, quotes, and examples?
  • Does the essay open with an effective “hook” that intrigues readers and keeps them reading?
  • Does each paragraph offer compelling evidence focused on a single supporting point?
  • Is the opposing point of view presented and convincingly refuted?
  • Is the sentence structure varied? Is the word choice precise? Do the transitions between sentences and paragraphs help the reader’s understanding?
  • Does the concluding paragraph convey the value of the writer’s position and urge the reader to think and act?

If the essay is still missing the mark, take another look the thesis. Does it present the strongest argument? Test it by writing a thesis statement for the opposing viewpoint. In comparison, does the original thesis need strengthening? Once the thesis presents a well-built argument with a clear adversarial viewpoint, the rest of the essay should fall into place more easily.

4. Editing the Persuasive Essay

Next, proofread and correct errors in grammar and mechanics, and edit to improve style and clarity. Having a friend read the essay helps writers edit with a fresh perspective.

5. Publishing the Persuasive Essay

Sharing a persuasive essay with the rest of the class or with family and friends can be both exciting and intimidating. Learn from the experience and use the feedback to make the next essay even better.

Time4Writing Teaches Persuasive Essay Writing

Time4Writing essay writing courses offer a highly effective way to learn how to write the types of essays required for school, standardized tests, and college applications. These online writing classes for elementary, middle school, and high school students, break down the writing process into manageable chunks, easily digested by young writers. Students steadily build writing skills and confidence with each online writing course, guided by one-on-one instruction with a dedicated, certified teacher. We first introduce essay writing to students at the elementary level, with our Beginning Essay Writing course, where they will have an opportunity to write their first five-paragraph essay. Our middle school online writing courses, Welcome to the Essay and Advanced Essay, teach students the fundamentals of writing essays, including the persuasive essay. The high school online writing class, Exciting Essay Writing, focuses in depth on the essay writing process with preparation for college as the goal. Time4Writing’s online writing classes for kids also cover how to interpret writing prompts in testing situations. Read what parents are saying about their children’s progress with Time4Writing’s online writing courses.


Transcript of Writing a Persuasive Essay

Persuasive Writing:
Writing that tries to convince a reader to do something or what to believe about a certain topic. The Persuasive Essay The 6+ Paragraph Essay: Four: MAKE A PLAN, then write! The Great Introduction… Persuasive Writing can be used to… Support a cause “Please support my football team by buying discount coupons.” Urge people to action “Vote for Sarah!” Make a change “The principal should let us wear hats.” Prove something wrong “Cell phones don’t cause brain cancer.” Stir up sympathy “If you don’t adopt this dog, it
could have to live in a shelter.” Create interest “Better grades get you a better job
and more money.” Get people to agree with you “I am sure you’ll agree that Milky
Way is the best candy bar.” Think about a few random TV ads.
What were they trying to get you
to do or think? Watch this ad. What are they
trying to get you to do? So ….. How would you persuade someone to do….(or not to do ) something, or to buy an item or service? First…Know Your Audience…
Before you start writing, you should know your audience:
- Who will read your writing? Who do you need to convince?
- The audience may be your friends, your teacher, your parents,
your principal, the readers of a newspaper or the President of
the United States!
- Should you be casual or professional? Second… Pick a side!The writer must clearly state his/her position and stay with that position. Pick a side!





Generally, you state your position on the topic in the opening paragraph or introduction. Three: Do Your Research…
In order to convince the reader you need more than just an opinion;
you need facts or examples to back your opinion. So, be sure to do the research! 1. Introduction/Hook/Thesis
2. Argument 1 with support
3. Argument 2 with support
4. Argument 3 with support
5. Show the counter-argument
and make an argument against it
6. Conclusion It grabs or “hooks” the reader’s attention by using one or more of the following strategies:
- An anecdote or scenario
- An interesting fact or statistic
- A quotation
- A question
It tells how the writing will be organized.
The author’s position is clearly stated in a thesis statement. Open with a Anecdote or Scenario:
A short story within an introduction
to make the point clear. Example:Sally got out of bed, and looked at the alarm clock. She was running late! She would have to hurry to catch the bus. This was one of those days that she was glad that her school had a uniform policy…she wouldn’t have to waste much time picking out an outfit. Open with a Fact or Statistic:
provide a statistics or facts that will startle
readers to pull them into your essay. Example: Can you believe that over 90% of students polled at our school are dissatisfied with school lunch, but only 5% are willing to pack their own lunches? Open with a Quotation Conversational:
“Mom, I’ve signed up to fight for my country!”

Famous Quote:
"War is nothing without a soldier to fight it."
- Unknown Open with a Question:
Example:
How many times have you
eaten fast food this month? Open with an Outrageous Statement:
Example:“Fast food is killing America!” You should come up with at least three claims to support
your opinion.
Each of the claims will be turned into a body paragraph. EXAMPLE
Thesis: Uniform policies are beneficial in schools, and should be implemented nationwide.
Reason 1: Allows for less bullying based on wardrobe.
Reason 2: Students will concentrate more on school and less on attire.
Reason 3: It cuts down on cost of school clothes and time spent getting ready in the morning. The BODY:
where the argument is explained Types of Support: 1. Big Names: Important people or experts can make your argument seem more convincing.
Example: Former U.S. president Bill Clinton thinks that junk food should be taken out of vending machines. 2. Logos: Facts, numbers, and information can be very convincing.
Example: A Snickers bar has 280 calories and 30 grams of sugar. That’s not very healthy. 3. Research: Using reliable research can help your argument seem convincing.
Example: A recent study found that students who watch TV during the week don’t do as well in school. 4. Pathos: Getting people to feel happy, sad, or angry can help your argument. (Appeal to the readers emotions.)
Example: Your donation might just get this puppy off the street and into a good home. 5. Ethos: If people believe and trust in you, you’re more likely to persuade them.
Example: Believe me! I’ve been there before. I’m just like you. 6.Kairos: Try to convince your audience that this issue is so important they must act now.Example: This is a one-time offer. You can’t get this price after today. You’ll Need to Show “The Other Side of the Story”
• How many of you have been in a discussion with someone and
you remember saying, “Yeah, that’s true, but…” This is called a counter-argument. It’s the “other side” of the argument.
• This is where you should explain why your opposition believes what they believe.
• You’ll need to tell your reader what the counter-argument is and prove why it should not matter. For example:
“A fast food company would not agree with the points in this essay. They would have lots of reasons why fast food is good. They may say…”it’s convenient” or “It’s fine if eaten in moderation.” These arguments just don’t hold up when you take all the facts into consideration! Conclude or End Your Essay…
What makes an good conclusion? • Last paragraph summarizes your main point. (Restate your thesis.)
• End using one or more of the following strategies:
• Call the reader to action
• Anecdote or scenario
• Make a Prediction
• The last paragraph wraps up the writing and gives the reader something to think about. Strategies for Conclusions
Call to Action: Ask the reader to do something or to make something happen
“I challenge you to watch what you eat and to avoid fast food.”

Give a Solution: provide an answer to the problem
“Fast food doesn’t have to be “bad food.” Make better choices like salads, fruit and low fat treats.”

Make a Prediction: explain the consequences of action or inaction
“If people continue to eat lots of fast food, they put their health at risk. If kids don’t make better choices today, they won’t grow into healthy adults.” A thesis statement is one sentence at the end of your introduction that states your opinion. It needs to be strong.
Which one is thought provoking?
This essay describes the difference between being a student and being a scholar.
School board policy should be changed in order to implement cell phones into the curriculum. What is a thesis statement?

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