Submitted by Kimberly Martinez
Writing an essay is part of getting a good education since it helps students develop their written communication skills, which are so important for success. The process of planning an essay involves being able to organize thoughts on a page in a logical manner and bring the ideas to a conclusion. For some students, even the word “essay” can be intimidating, but these 5 online tools for easy essay writing can help to keep them on track.
PersuadeStar is a free application for Grade 5-12 teachers and their students. The process starts with the teacher assigning an essay within the application. At that point, the teacher can choose from several options, including having the students analyze essay styles from examples provided, using an essay planning tool, writing their own essay using an essay planning space, student spelling feedback, or source and bibliography information. The application also tracks how many times a student used the options.
Students must use an assignment code to access PersuadeStar. The work can be accessed by the correct teacher. The work is stored online for one month after the last edit or modification, and it can be downloaded to a personal or school computer if the teacher wants to store it for a longer term.
The Purdue Online Writing Lab is available to Grade 7-12 teachers and their students. Topics covered include general tips for staring to write an essay, strategies and questions to help with planning, how to deal with writer’s block/anxiety, developing an outline, and instructions on paragraphs. Other sections focus on transitions, conducting research, how to search the World Wide Web for material, using quotes correctly, and avoiding plagiarism.
Thesis Builder is an online tool specifically designed to help with specific parts of writing an essay which may be causing difficulty. Students who are working on a persuasive essay will find the thesis builder and online outliner a helpful tool. By filling in some questions online, the tool helps them to write a thesis statement for their essay. The statement can be changed and edited until the student is satisfied with the result.
Essay Map is an interactive tool that can be used for Grades 3-12. Students are prompted to develop an outline for their essay, including an introductory statement, the ideas they want their writing to focus on, the supporting statements, and a conclusion that brings all of them together at the end of the paper. The tool has several ways to move through the information, including an on-screen graphic that allows students to move around the map easily without having to work in a linear manner. The map can be saved, printed, or e-mailed to the teacher or the student for their records.
The website also includes a number of lessons that use this interactive. Teachers can look for ones for their classes by Grade level. Each one contains a brief summary of the lesson, as well as the estimated time, materials needed, and related resources.
When students are given an essay assignment to complete, they often get bogged down with feeling anxious about not knowing how to start or what to write about or how to organize their ideas in the proper form. These online tools can help them to accomplish these goals and complete the assignment correctly. While they may never get to the point where they are looking forward to writing essays, having online help will make the task a much less daunting one.
Authors Bio: Kimberly Martinez is working for the company which provides tips on how to write an essay. She is a freelance writer and enjoys sharing tips with online community.