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Interesting Essay Ideas That Will Make Your Teen a Better Writer
Teens often struggle with writing when there is a disconnect between them and the subject they have to write about. Sometimes it may be a lack of interest. At other times it may be a lack of real-life experience with the subject. That’s why we at Homeschool Mastery Academy believe the best essay ideas are ones that are tied to either interest, experience, or both.
Will they have to write about things that they don’t like, aren’t interested in, and have no experience with at times? Of course! But when they can start with what they know and what they like, they’ll build their writing muscles so they can take on other writing challenges in the future.
3 Essay Ideas for Your Teens
1. Write an essay based on a field trip.
Be sure to bring a notebook or journal with you to take notes! Set aside time to write a few paragraphs while you are there. And take pictures to help you write and add visual interest to the essay itself.
Go to the zoo. Whether an animal or what it’s like to have a career there, you’ll find plenty of topics to write about when you go to the zoo. Consider sitting and observing an animal you are interested in. What does it look like? How does it move? What sound does it make? Write a description based on as many of your senses that you can as you watch. Use the plaque describing the animal and it’s habitat to take notes on interesting facts.
Or interview someone who works at the zoo. Find out what type of education they needed for their job, how they became interested in it, and what they do on a daily basis.
Look at art in a museum. Study a work of art that captures your attention. Take the time to jot down notes describing it. Learn more about the artist that created the work, the type of art it is (such as modern or impressionist), and the time period it was created. The essay can be on the artwork, artist, or genre of art.
Take a historical tour. Take pictures if you are allowed, ask the tour guide any questions you have, and even do some more research when you get home. Historical tours and places make history come alive.
2. Write an essay based on an experience.
What are your personal experiences? It might be something you’ve done like riding a roller coaster or skiing, a place you have traveled, or a hobby or sport you participate in. Think about what it feels like.
Ask questions like
- Why do people do these things? What is the benefit in participating?
- What is the science or history behind this activity?
- How do people improve in their abilities to do this?
- How can I describe the experience? (Remember to think about your five senses!)
3. Write an essay based on a career you might want to do.
This is a great way to explore different career options so you will know whether you are really interested in them. Consider shadowing someone doing a particular career for a day or interviewing him or her. Research the different types of jobs within a particular area such as advertising, journalism, or medicine.
Take the time to dig deep into whatever area you chose. For example, for journalism you might consider
- Touring your local newspaper or television station
- Watching the news for a week noting the different things they do throughout programming (teasing content, the types of stories they do, where commercials are placed during the program, etc.)
- Getting a copy or two of the newspaper to see the different sections, ads, and types of articles. Be sure to get the Sunday paper since it often is the biggest edition.
- Following an online new source
Allow your teens to become strong writers before adding on the expectation of writing about those things they don’t really know or care about. We hope these essay ideas will help your teens to do just that.
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