Essential Ways Parents Can Help Their Children with Writing Essays

Writing an essay is stressful for students and their parents. Many freshmen do not have the time and energy to prepare for the test task. Sometimes there is not enough motivation.

To help your child in this difficult task, parents should understand the basics of writing an essay themselves.

Here are some basic tips and rules on how to write an essay correctly:

Types of Essays in English

When preparing for a written paper, parents and children should know what types of essays exist. There are three types of essays in the English language.

You should choose a particular type depending on the topic and the situation in which you are writing the essay.

For and Against Essays

In this version of writing the essay, the “sandwich” principle is used. You need to consider the topic from different sides, giving arguments for and against.

Opinion Essays

Opinion essays reflect the author’s own point of view. The difficulty lies in the fact that it is necessary to consider the topic from different sides, express several points of view, and argue your position on the issue.

Suggesting Solutions to Problem Essays

This type of essay implies the presence of a specific problem for which it is necessary to offer a solution.

When applying for a position where active use of a foreign language is required, you will most likely write this type of essay.

Stylistic Requirements for the English Essay

Tell your child what stylistic norms he should adhere to:

  1. Maintain a formal style. Do not use abbreviated forms of words. It is desirable not to use parentheses and exclamation marks in the text. Sentences should not begin with the words and, but, because, or also.
  2. Do not use categorical judgments. Prove all your thoughts with arguments, with the help of quotations indicating the source.
  3. Use cliché phrases, they will show your logic and help structure the text. But do not go overboard – no more than three phrases per paragraph.

Common Mistakes When Writing an Essay in English

Analyze the main mistakes to avoid when writing an essay. Try to make sure that the errors below are not present in your child’s paper:

  1. Use of colloquial style and slang.
  2. Deviating from the topic.
  3. Using overly categorical phrases.
  4. Using special vocabulary, concepts and terms.
  5. Lack of argumentation or too many arguments (2-3 arguments are enough).
  6. Too many cliché phrases that overload the text.
  7. Do not neglect the draft. No matter how prepared you are for the essay, no one is safe against typos and mistakes due to excitement. 

It can be difficult to avoid these common mistakes. To ensure your child’s essay is well-written and accurate, you may consider using an online essay service that employs qualified and experienced writers.

Six Steps to Writing a Good Essay in English

1. Research

Start writing an essay with your research on the topic, show yourself as an expert on the subject. Read other people’s work.

You can use various sources of information – the Internet, academic works, libraries.

Take brief notes, gather information, immerse yourself in the thoughts of great scientists, thinkers, and just smart people.

2. Analysis

When you have a sufficient knowledge base, start analyzing the arguments presented in the essays you are reading.

Define the requirements, write down the reasons and obvious points. Try to find weak and strong points in the logic of the authors.

To learn how to write an essay in English (as, indeed, in any other language), it is necessary to analyze the work written by other people.

3. Plan

Make an outline of your work on paper. Use draft sentences to describe paragraphs and the main idea that these paragraphs will express.

Make a map of your arguments and make sure that the paragraphs are related in meaning.

4. Paragraphs

Each individual paragraph should focus on a particular thought, an idea that supports the thesis. Start your paragraphs with suggestions on the topic.

Support your statements with visual examples and express your thoughts in the most reasonable way possible.

Talk to the reader as if they are sitting in front of you. In other words, try not to write, but to speak in the form of an essay.

5. MLA Format

Write your essay in English according to the accepted citation rules.

All ideas and quotes taken from other people’s works should be referenced in the text and a list of references should be attached to the work.

6. Language

Since we are writing an essay in English, you need to be sure to follow all the rules and to use the words correctly.

Watch the spelling, punctuation, stylistics of the text. Do not make too long sentences with a lot of punctuation marks.

Get rid of those English words and expressions that you are not sure of their correct use.


While you can’t do your child’s schoolwork for them, you can certainly support their academic success by guiding through the process of writing a good English essay.

Have any essay writing tips to share? Post them in the comments below!

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