If students understand that there are four types of standard writing essays to choose from, it could increase their interest in classroom writing assignments.

The first type is a narrative. It tells the story about an event. It helps if the writer finds the topic exciting and should contain a beginning, middle and end.

Book reports, research papers and biographies are examples of expository essays. Teachers will look for a topic to be stated right away.

The next one –the descriptive essay – should include specifics and interesting comparisons of a person, place or thing. The author describes how the subject looks, sounds, tastes, smells and feels.

The persuasive essay requires writers to state their opinion and use facts and details as evidence. It should end on a strong note.

Finding the essay type that fits their style just may coax reluctant writers into awesome authors.

For further reading: National Geographic Kids Almanac 2010


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