How to Write Your First Persuasive Essay

You might have heard of this elusive ‘essay,’ but have never had the pleasure of writing one. It may seem overwhelming or daunting, but trust us, it isn’t!  Essays are just a way to argue a point. A persuasive essay is even more fun because it is just a way to argue in order to convince someone that you are correct — and we all love to be correct!

Often teachers will introduce the format of an essay by asking students to write an opinion or persuasive essay. The typical format of an essay while in middle and high school is usually 5 paragraphs: an introduction paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph. So, before you start getting anxious, follow these 5 steps and conquer your first essay!

#1 Select a Side

Considering Both Sides

Sometimes it’s hard to pick a side when writing about a particular issue, but essays require us to argue for one side, and one side only. So, before you pick the side you think is the strongest, why not prove it to yourself by making a T-Chart. Write the two sides of the argument (sometimes this is pros vs. cons, but not always) at the top of the T-Chart. Then, try to come up with at least 3 arguments for each side. The side with the objectively best arguments should become the basis of your essay.

#2 Prepare Your Plan

Prepare a Plan

Graphic organizers are the best. Whether you are just mapping out the sub-arguments, or if you are filling out a graphic organizer in complete sentences, organizing your work is immensely helpful. The internet is full of amazing graphic organizers, so snoop around and find one that you love! We also love using Inspiration because it is so colourful and customize-able!

#3 Think Through Your Thesis

Think about your thesis

Your argument should be summed up in one sentence, and that sentence is called your thesis statement. The thesis statement is usually found in the last sentence of your introduction paragraph, and it provides your audience with a clear understanding of what your essay will be arguing. It’s okay to change the wording or specifics of your thesis in the revising and editing processes, but just make sure it reflects your central point.

#4 Provide Proof

A.P.E.: Argue, Prove, ExplainProof for an opinion essay comes in the form of common knowledge, real-world examples, and/or personal experiences. Each paragraph needs a least one piece of proof, and often has three pieces of proof that supports each body paragraph’s sub-argument. We suggest using the APE Strategy to ensure that you don’t forget to introduce your proof and explain how it supports your overall argument.

#5 Revise and Edit

Revision and Editing

Revision and editing is the last step of all written expression, and for good reason. This step is crucial because you can catch silly little mistakes you might have made along the way. We recommend reading your essay out loud. You can choose to read it out loud to yourself, or to a friend or family member. We also recommend that you check for homonyms and other word errors while you’re proofreading. Common word errors are: their/there/they’re, affect/effect, then/than, and accept/except.

Still think you need some assistance with your writing?  Contact Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space to inquire about our newly developed online Essay Coach Program to help!  You’ll be introduced to each of these strategies and more during our extensive, skill-based essay writing programs. We offer online one-on-one, as well as group classes. 

Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space Offers Alpha-Mania Early Childhood Education Storybooks for Parents, Educators, Day Care Centers, Nurseries, Preschools and Franchises for School Readiness

Alpha-Mania Teaches Children Five Essential Predictors of Reading Success: Sound-Symbol Correspondence, Rhyming and Alliteration, Blending, Segmenting and Recognizing Sounds Within Words

By Ruth Rumack

Toronto, Ontario – For the past 16 years, the Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space (RRLS) has used Alpha-Mania storybooks to teach early literacy and phonological awareness skills to children in preschool through 1st grade via personalized one-to-one teaching sessions, interactive teacher-led group classes and licensed lesson plans. The company targets daycares, nursery schools and homeschools throughout Canada and is now taking new orders from the United States, the United Kingdom, India, Philippines, Australia and other English speaking countries. Please call (416) 925-1225 to learn more.

The Alpha-Mania storybooks encourage interactions between readers and children that promote the development of early-reading skills. They are colorful, animated adventures that take children on board pirate ships with the Alpha-Mania crew to sail the seven seas in search of consonants and vowels in a wonderful and intriguing world of sounds, symbols and words.

On their exciting adventures, captivated children are introduced to the five essential predictors of reading success in order to inspire reading confidence:

1. Sound-Symbol Correspondence
2. Rhyming and Alliteration (repetition of the first sound in a group of words)
3. Blending (combining individual sounds to make words)
4. Segmenting (separating words into individual parts and sounds)
5. Recognizing Sounds within Words

In addition to the existing Alpha-Mania storybooks, the RRLS staff will soon be conducting an Alpha-Mania crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo.com to raise money to take these important lessons into the electrifying new world of digital education technology.

The main goal of the crowdfunding campaign will be to make the Alpha-Mania early childhood literacy program available to schools, literacy centers and other organizations that educate children.

Alpha-Mania Early Childhood Learning and Literacy
Alpha-Mania Early Childhood Learning and Literacy

Students, parents, teachers and schools who donate money to the crowdfunding campaign will be able to enter a contest to name characters, animals, ships, islands, places and treasure coves throughout the Alpha-Mania storybooks that will be printed after the crowdfunding campaign.

Once the printed storybooks have been finalized, RRLS will use a portion of the crowdfunding proceeds to take the Alpha-Mania adventures into the world of digital media.

E-books and apps will come first, followed by a newly designed website and a web series that will allow parents and teachers to use smartphones, tablets and personal computers to download Alpha-Mania lessons and use them to teach children early childhood pre-reading, reading and other literacy skills.

Fun Early Childhood Learning with Alpha-Mania  at Ruth Rumack's Learning Center
Fun Early Childhood Learning with Alpha-Mania at Ruth Rumack’s Learning Center

If you would like to follow our progress, please click here to sign up for our free HeadTalker news alert, which will notify everyone via social media when the details of the new crowdfunding campaign are released on May 25, 2015.

The first storybook, Captain Ray and the Rhyming Pirates, is now available for purchase for $15 on the RuthRumack.com website. Volume discounts are available for franchises, pre-schools, day care centers, nurseries and other types of educational organizations that buy in bulk. Please call (416) 925-1225 to speak with Ruth Rumack for volume sales pricing information.