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Writing essays

Writing an essay may seem like an overwhelming task at first, especially if you’ve never written a formal composition. However, if you have mastered the skill of paragraph writing, you can easily learn to organise your thoughts and express them in simple and concise language.

If you are allowed to choose your own topic, select one that is familiar to you until you become comfortable with the essay-writing process. We thought of showing you how an essay should be written in the wake of many complaints that since children have access to the internet many of them were copying stuff straight off the Internet. This is a crime and is known as plagiarising.

Children must be taught to think for themselves and to put down their ideas on paper . If you do this you will learn to do things by yourself but don’t copy because it can easily be spotted.

How to help children write paragraphs

Select a topic. If possible, choose one that you can write about easily.

Teachers will often assign general topics such as your summer vacation or favourite types of movies. Whatever the topic, narrow the focus to a specific emphasis such as one place you visited during the summer or one movie you recently watched.

Prewrite your essay. This may seem like extra work, but it will make the essay easier to write. Organise your ideas by paragraph is the most effective. Under each paragraph’s main idea write three supporting details.

Writing in complete sentences is not necessary on the organiser. Use phrases that can be developed into sentences when you write the essay.

Write the introduction. This paragraph explains your purpose for writing. It usually begins with a thesis, or topic sentence that states the main idea of the essay. It also serves as the outline for the paragraphs that will follow.

Write three paragraphs that support the main topic. Each paragraph supports one main idea with details and should consist of five to seven sentences.

Use ideas written on the graphic organiser to compose these paragraphs.

Finish the essay with a concluding paragraph that summarises the essay. It is similar to the introduction, but do not repeat what you’ve already written.

The goal of the conclusion is to leave the reader with a strong impression of your thoughts and ideas.

Proofread and revise the essay. Check spelling and punctuation first, then read sentences again to check subject and verb agreement.

Get a friend or family member to read your composition and give you feedback about points that need clarifying.

An essay can have many purposes, but the basic structure is the same no matter what. You may be writing an essay to argue for a particular point of view or to explain the steps necessary to complete a task.

Either way, your essay will have the same basic format.

If you follow a few simple steps, you will find that the essay almost writes itself. You will be responsible only for supplying ideas, which are the important part of the essay anyway.

Don’t let the thought of putting pen to paper daunt you.

Get started!

Internet


What is Plagiarism?

Many people think of plagiarism as copying another’s work or borrowing someone else’s original ideas. But terms such as “copying” and “borrowing” can disguise the seriousness of the offence:

According to the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, to “plagiarise” means

- to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one’s own

- to use (another’s production) without crediting the source

- to commit literary theft

- to present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source

In other words, plagiarism is an act of fraud. It involves both stealing someone else’s work and lying about it afterward.

But can words and ideas really be stolen?

According to U.S. law, the answer is yes. The expression of original ideas is considered intellectual property and is protected by copyright laws, just like original inventions. Almost all forms of expression fall under copyright protection as long as they are recorded in some way (such as a book or a computer file).

All of the following are considered plagiarism:

- turning in someone else’s work as your own

- copying words or ideas from someone else without giving credit

- failing to put a quotation in quotation marks

- giving incorrect information about the source of a quotation

- changing words but copying the sentence structure of a source without giving credit

- copying so many words or ideas from a source that it makes up the majority of your work, whether you give credit or not (see our section on “fair use” rules)

Most cases of plagiarism can be avoided, however, by citing sources.

Simply acknowledging that certain material has been borrowed and providing your audience with the information necessary to find that source is usually enough to prevent plagiarism.

What about images, videos, and music?

Using an image, video or piece of music in a work you have produced without receiving proper permission or providing appropriate citation is plagiarism. The following activities are very common in today’s society. Despite their popularity, they still count as plagiarism.

-Internet


These simple steps will guide you through the essay writing process

- Decide on your topic.

- Prepare an outline or diagram of your ideas

- Write your thesis statement.

- Write the body.

- Write the main points.

- Write the subpoints.

- Elaborate on the subpoints.

- Write the introduction.

- Write the conclusion.

- Add the finishing touches.

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