From Theory to Practice
What do students need to know to succeed in fourth grade (or third or fifth)? What supplies are needed? What rules and steps should be followed? These and many other questions provide the framework for students to write how-to essays for a specific audiencefuture fourth graders. Although this lesson focuses specifically on fourth grade, it can be easily adapted for third or fifth graders. Students first learn about the how-to writing genre by reading an assortment of instruction manuals. This also demonstrates how how-to writing relates to their everyday lives. The teacher then models each step of the writing process as the students write about how to be successful fourth graders. After students publish their writing, the final drafts are saved for the following year's fourth graders to read at the beginning of the next school year.
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- Power Proofreading: Students can use this interactive site to complete activities to build their proofreading skills.
- Essay Map: Using this interactive site, students can organize the information they will include in their essay.
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FROM THEORY TO PRACTICE
Huntley-Johnston, L., Merritt, S.P., & Huffman, L.E. (1997). How to do how-to books: Real life writing in the classroom. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 41(3), 172179.
- Students need to understand that there are purposes for writing other than for the teacher to read and grade it. Writing how-to essays has been found to be a successful alternative to the traditional research paper or teacher-based essay.
- How-to writing is a genre that appeals to most students because it is applicable in the world. This genre involves exploring interests and needs to identify a topic, conducting several research methods, and working through the writing process.
- When students' writing has an authentic audience beyond the classroom teacher, they can see a direct connection between their lives and their literacy development.
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8 Resources for Essay Writing that Make a Teacher’s Life Easier
What’s the toughest part of your work as an educator? You are used to teaching lessons… you already have the knowledge, so it’s not that difficult to express it. However, the task of motivating your students to write falls in another category. It’s hard for you to take control over the process and explain how they should infuse their creativity into the rigid form of academic writing. The following online resources will help you teach essay writing in a more inspiring way.
Essay Writing Lesson Plans
1. Schools rarely provide teachers with clear lesson plans on essay writing. You have full authority over this aspect of education, so you need to set clear goals that your students will achieve step by step. Scholastic offers lesson plans for all grades. You will discover resources that will help you cover the basics of academic writing, but you can continue using the same website when your students make progress.
Essay Writing Guide
2. This is an amazing app that has the elements of writing arranged around four interface wheels: Content, Style, Organization, and Mechanics. You can click on any term around the wheels to reveal a new page containing the definition of that term, instructions for proper use, and examples from the literary canon.
Write My Essay
3. You want your students to become great essay writers? Be a good example for them! Show unique samples on the topics you assign and tell your students how each part of the process is developed. You don’t have time to write papers? You can get them at this website! Custom writing service NinjaEssays assigns professional writers to the orders. They will complete a plagiarism-free paper tailored according to your instructions. Since you can monitor the project’s development, you’ll be able to explain to your students how the final result was achieved.
The blog at this website is another useful resource; you can recommend your students to enter contests and read tips that will boost their writing practices.
How to Teach Your Students to Write an Essay
4. Busy Teacher features a detailed guide that teaches educators how to teach essay writing. First, you need to understand the writing process before you can guide your students through it. Some teachers just assign a topic and expect everyone to deliver a perfect paper. Don’t do that! Academic writing is a complex skill that can only be developed under proper guidance. Rely on these tips to learn how to be there for your students through every stage of the process.
5. This interactive essay map, developed by ReadWriteThink, adds fun to the process of planning. Before they can start writing the actual essay, your students need to plan and organize its structure. They should develop a thesis and think of main arguments that will be supported with facts. This interactive essay mapping software asks students to write brief descriptions of the introduction, main ideas, supporting details, and conclusion. As a result, they will get a clear graphic outline that will make them more focused during the writing stages.
7. Time4Writing offers free writing resources in the form of printables, presentations, videos, and games. If you enable your students to obtain writing skills through fun and play, these projects won’t be overwhelming for them. The free resources are separated into categories according to the stages of the writing process.
How to Write Better Essays
8. It’s important to support your students with practical tips on essay writing. This guide recommends reading other people's essays, building vocabulary, develop precise arguments, etc. Each hint comes with a thorough explanation that will enable you to make the academic writing process easier for your students. As a result, they will understand the assignments not as a punishment, but as a chance to prove their skills and showcase their arguments.
And here is are two posts on how to write the classic 5 paragraph essay: