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23 Persuasive writing Prompts for high School students
Writing a persuasive essay can be a difficult task for teachers and students if you don’t have a great idea to help get those creative juices flowing. These prompts cover a range of issues and topics that are pertinent to middle school and high school students and can be easily adapted to work with a topic you have been teaching in your own class.
Students really enjoy the opportunity to try and change the world in which they live and hopefully these prompts might be a great starting point.
Remember that if you are looking for more great free resources and structured guides to teaching all aspects of English especially writing be sure to visit literacyideas. com
- Some parents give children a weekly or monthly allowance regardless of their behavior because they believe an allowance teaches children to be financially responsible. Other parents only give children an allowance as a reward for completing chores or when they have behaved properly. Explain what you think parents should do and why.
- Many schools now require teenagers to spend a certain number of hours each term doing volunteer work or community service. Some people believe this is an excellent idea as it promotes good citizenship and cultivates compassion. Others feel that forced volunteerism is not volunteering at all. How do you feel about this issue? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your position.
- Some parts of the world allow people to get a driver’s license at age sixteen. Many feel this age is much too young for the responsibility that comes with driving a car and that teenagers should not be allowed to drive until the age of 18. In your opinion, at what age should people be allowed to drive, and why?
- What is your all-time favorite book or movie and why? Write an essay persuading readers to watch this ﬁlm or read this book.
- Have you ever made a life changing action that has had a positive effect on you or the lives of others? Write an essay that convinces readers to make a change for the better.
- You have been asked to write a letter that would convince a organizers of a major event to be hosted in your hometown. Write an essay that convinces these delegates that your town would be great host.
- Top professional athletes often have salaries and bonuses in the tens of millions of dollars. Do you think these athletes deserve this type of income? Why or why not? Explain your position and use specific reasons and examples.
- Humans have always wondered about the possibility of life on other planets in the universe. Do you believe extraterrestrial life exists? Write an essay persuading others to share your point of view.
- If someone discovered the ‘Elixir of life’ that would enable us to live forever, would it be a blessing or a curse? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your answer.
- If you have you ever traveled to a place that you found very meaningful and rewarding? Write an essay that persuades others to visit this important place.
- Nearly all private schools require students to wear uniforms. Should public school students wear uniforms too? Argue for or against school uniforms for public school students. Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your position.
- You are to select one item from the twenty-ﬁrst century to place in a time capsule for future generations, what would you choose? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your choice, explaining both the item’s signiﬁcance and the reasons why it embodies the culture of the early twenty-ﬁrst century.
- What would improve your town or city? Write an essay convincing ofﬁcials to make a change that would improve your neighborhood.
- Some studies have shown students often perform better on exams if music is played softly in the background. However, some students may ﬁnd the music distracting. Should schools play classical music during exams and/or allow students to listen to headphones whilst working? Take a position and explain your answer.
- Should parents be a child’s disciplinarian, or their best friend?
- Take a position and explain your answer using speciﬁc reasons and examples.
- Millions of people visit zoos around the world. But some people believe that zoos are inhumane and that animals should not be kept in captivity. Do you agree? Why or why not? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your position.
- In most countries people pay taxes based upon how much they earn: the higher their income, the higher the percentage of that income they must pay in taxes. Many people argue that a ﬂat tax, in which everyone pays the same rate regardless of income, would be a more equitable and desirable tax system. Which of these two tax systems do you think is best, and why? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to support your answer.
- Is it wise to devote time and money to building a space station on the moon or Mars? Why or why not? Explain your answer.
- An ancient Greek proverb states, “All things good to know are difﬁcult to learn.” Do you agree? Why or why not? Use speciﬁc reasons and examples to explain your answer.
- Imagine that you know someone who is unfamiliar with computers and has never been on the Internet. Write an essay convincing this relative to get a computer and get online.
- Imagine that you have made it to the ﬁnal round of interviews for your dream job. Convince your prospective employers that you are the one who most deserves the position.
- Is there something that you believe is truly worth ﬁghting for? Write an essay persuading others that this cause is worth a ﬁght.
If you have any other great ideas for persuasive prompts please post them in the comments section below.
Essay Writing Prompts
Ah, the wonders of the five-paragraph essay. Here is a collection of 10 essay writing prompts that you can use in your classroom, household or for yourself. As a writer who is over six years removed from his last college course, it is strange to think how far removed I am from writing essays. That being said, I enjoyed both outlining and writing essays, crafting thesis statements and coming up with pertinent, interesting conclusions. Perhaps these essay writing prompts can help your students to do the same by focusing on subject areas in which they might have something to write.
1. Some people say that school doesn’t teach people about the real world. Do you agree or disagree? Argue your point and include some examples of «real world classes» that you think might be of more use than calculus.
2. What is the value you place on your current friendships? Do you think that your middle or high school friends will be part of your life forever or that they’ll fade as you get older? Write an essay about your beliefs on this subject in the context of how important friendship is in general.
3. What is your definition of success? Some people think it has to do with perfection while others are concerned about achieving goals that are worthy in the eyes of society. Explain how you have or have not been successful thus far in life and if you think you will be in the future.
4. Teachers in school have a lot of different teaching styles. Some are more hands on while others want you to memorize as many facts as you can. Describe in an essay the most effective and the least effective teaching styles in your opinion.
5. You may or may not have an idea of what you to do for a living when you enter adulthood. Many adults don’t themselves. Describe in a five-paragraph essay, at least three different potential career paths for yourself and why you think they would be a good use of your time.
6. There has been a lot of talk lately about how advertisements are showing children dressed more like adults and thus putting them in a sexualized context. Write about how you think these advertisements have affected you and society as a whole.
7. One of the big differences in entertainment these days is that it’s possible to watch television and movies or listen to music almost anywhere that you can bring a phone or a computer. Write an essay about whether you think this constant access to amusement has a positive or negative effect on society.
8. Some education experts have said that the current educational system is weeding out creativity in younger students. Write a five-paragraph essay on the importance of creativity and imagination in school and life and how it would best be fostered in the classroom.
9. Write an essay about what it would have been like to go to school fifty years ago without cell phones, video games and Facebook. How would your educational experience have been different?
10. Imagine that you had to convince someone to live in your town or neighborhood. Write a persuasive essay to convince that person of its value. If you don’t like where you live, pick another place and write your essay on that location.
I hope that you got some useable essay topics out of these essay writing prompts. For a collection of 1,000 writing prompts that could be adapted for essays, freewriting and many other uses, check out my book 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts: Ideas for Blogs, Scripts, Stories and More.
Written by Bryan Cohen
Bryan Cohen is the author of more than 30 books, many of which focus on creative writing and blasting through that pesky writer’s block. His books have sold more than 20,000 copies. You can find him on Google+ and Facebook.
Write a Story Based on These Prompts or This Article!
Use the above prompts or article as inspiration to write a story or other short piece.
Expository Writing Prompts: 30 Writing Prompts for School and College Students
Expository writing is a staple of academic writing. Throughout your academic and professional career, you will be called on to write hundreds of expository articles, reports and essays. A thorough knowledge of this writing form will hold you in good stead all through your career.
The best way to improve writing skills is through regular practice. Depending on your current education level, you can use these 30 writing prompts to guide your writing practice. Another option is to take up this course on quality paragraph and essay writing.
What is an Expository Writing?
‘Expository’ is a synonym of ‘explanatory’. An expository essay or article, thus, is a piece of writing that explains or informs. It is meant to be based on fact and free of the writer’s prejudices. Opinion is often expressed, but only if it is backed by fact. For example, if someone asked you to write an essay on the causes of World War II, you would write about Germany’s losses in World War I, the Treaty of Versailles, the fall of the Weimar Republic and the rise of Hitler led Nazism. In other words, everything would be based on verifiable fact – an expository essay.
The expository writing process is centered on four activities:
Generate a rough idea or hypothesis.
Find evidence to back up this idea.
Expound on the idea.
Present an argument to back up the idea.
Thus, if you were to say that the Treaty of Versailles was the chief cause of World War II, you would first talk about the conditions of the Treaty of Versailles, the financial condition of Germany after WWI, the ineffectiveness of the Weimar Republic, and how they all led to the rise of Nazism.
Structurally, a piece of expository writing has the following components:
An Introduction that introduces the central idea you’ll talk about in the essay or article.
The Main body that presents evidence to back up the idea. This is the meat of the essay and should be at least 3-4 paragraphs long.
A Conclusion that presents your idea again in the light of the evidence.
Thus, the central thrust of expository writing should be to build towards proving an argument, fact by fact, evidence by evidence. You’ll use expository writing a lot throughout your academic life. Every essay you write in college will be expository in nature, as will the writing segment of the SAT/GMAT/GRE exams. Most writing you’ll have to do in your professional life will involve a lot of expository content as well. In other words, sharpening up this skill will serve you well throughout your life. This course on developing technical writing skills should help you get started on your writer’s journey.
Expository Writing Prompts
To help you get started with expository writing, let’s take a look at some popular, fun and useful expository writing prompts:
Secondary School Level Expository Prompts
1. Who do you admire the most in the world? Why?
2. If you could be any animal for a day, what would you be and why?
3. If you could live as any one person for a day, who would you choose and why?
4. If time travel was possible, which year would you go back in time to? Give a reasons for your answer.
5. What is your favorite book? What did you enjoy the most about it?
6. Who is your favorite teacher? How has he/she affected your education?
7. Describe your favorite vacation spot. Give reasons as to why you enjoy going there.
8. If you could change any one thing in the world, what would it be and why?
9. Write a paper describing a favorite day you spent with your family. Give at least three reasons why you enjoyed this day so much. Be as specific as possible.
10. What kind of music do you like listening to? What are your favorite singers or bands? Give reasons for your choice.
High School Level Writing Prompts
These topics require a bit more research and test the writer’s expository writing skills. They are best used for high school students, although secondary students in advanced writing classes can also benefit from them.
1. There is a strong parent-led campaign in your city to curb down on homework assignments given to students. As a student, however, you feel homework is essential to promoting learning. Write a paper arguing your stand by giving specific examples and statistics to show the benefits of homework.
2. Mobile phones are both a boon and a bane for high school students. On the one hand, it puts you in touch with the world, on the other, it discourages real face-to-face interaction. Write a paper that explores both the pros and cons of mobile phone usage among teenagers.
3. A lot of medical research today focuses on developing medicinal cures to ageing. Presumably, with the right breakthrough, humankind would live forever. How do you feel about this? Write a paper describing the advantages and disadvantages of extremely long life.
4. There has been a concentrated campaign in your school to curb bullying. While the campaign has been largely successful within schools, bullying has now reared its ugly head in online communities. Describe how online bullying is different from real-life bullying, and what steps can be taken to curb it.
5. In a globalized world, learning a foreign language has become increasingly important. Do you agree or disagree? Explain your answer in a detailed essay. Use facts, statistics and studies to supplement your views.
6. What are the qualities of a good leader? What can you learn from the examples of great leaders of the past?
7. You use the internet on an everyday basis. While the internet has a huge list of benefits, it has some downsides too. Write an essay exploring the disadvantages of using the internet, specifically referring to internet addiction, and information overload.
8. What is your favorite hobby? Describe how someone could go about learning this hobby, and what benefits he can gain from it.
9. If you were to volunteer to work in your community, where would you work and why?
10. A few members of your community have lost their home due to a nearby forest fire. Explain how you would help these community members and help them recover from their loss.
Preparing for SAT? This course on SAT writing will help you score your best.
College Level Writing Prompts
As we move further on the academic ladder, writing prompts require detailed research and a college-level grasp of subject matter.
1. Explore how obesity affects a nation’s productivity and economy.
2. What were the direct and indirect causes of World War II?
3. What are the long-term effects of global warming, especially its estimated impact on coastal cities.
4. What is your favorite retail business (Starbucks, McDonalds, etc.)? Describe to a layman how this business was started, what products it sells, how it makes money, and what are its best qualities.
5. Describe the evolution of communication in the last 20 years since the advent of the internet.
6. What is your favorite poem or short story? Explore and analyze its salient features in an essay.
7. What is a serious public health concern that you believe does not get enough attention? Describe this problem in detail. Back up your arguments with appropriate research.
8. Why is diversity in a workplace important?
9. What are the causes and effects of not voting in the elections?
10. What steps would you take to buy a new computer? Describe the process in-detail.
For more advanced training on college writing, take this course: College Writing Like a Boss.
What are your favorite writing prompts? We’d love to hear about them in the comments below!