Expository essays require beginning writers to come up with a main idea that announces the paper’s theme. Persuasive essays, on the other hand, require authors to develop a thesis assertion on a meaningful subject. The writers must take a risk and develop an opinion about a topic based on their own research. Once students have successfully practiced writing the various expository essays, they are ready to compose persuasive essays.
The purpose of the persuasive essay is to present a definite opinion about a controversial issue and persuade the reader to feel likewise about the subject. Writers must clearly explain their opinions in positive terms and include compelling facts and reasons to support that point of view. The persuasive essay speaks with confidence, clarity, and sincerity. It addresses reasonable opposing arguments and points out their weaknesses. The strongest point is often saved for last in a persuasive essay to prove to skeptical readers they have something to benefit by assuming the same stance.
The persuasive essay contains an introductory paragraph that includes a thesis/focus sentence, three or more supporting body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph. Students use the introductory paragraph to gain the reader’s attention and identify the controversy. Each of the body paragraphs begins with the writer’s position, followed by facts, reasons, and examples to support it. Rather than simply announcing (he subject of the essay, students develop an opinion about the topic based on some research they have done. Opposing sides of the issue and their weaknesses are cited, solutions proposed, and the writer’s outlook is confirmed in the conclusion.
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