Helpful Exercise That Will Improve Your Essay Writing Skills
Educators talk a lot about modeling work. That means that the students are shown examples of excellent writing to show them what the end result should look like. Mimicking a great writer as an exercise in writing improvement is easy and the results can be quite tremendous. But, keep in mind this is an improvement exercise. To submit work modeled after another author would be considered plagiarism. You are just mimicking as a means of practice. This process can take a few hours or you can break up the process into three or four sessions. How you allot the practice time is the writer’s or teacher’s) call.
How it Works
First print the model essay or upload it to your computer. Make sure the essay is a quality essay. Then using a similar topic and format, rewrite the paper. Use the same structure, the same verbs, and the same techniques that the model author used.
Once you finish your rewrite, put away both the original and the rewrite essays. Then take your same topic, and try to rewrite the essay from memory. Have at your side a writer’s checklist. The checklist should include such things as:
- Use active verbs
- Include transitions
- Check for slang and contractions and remove
- Follow the thesis statement like a road map
- Step up the vocabulary
- Keep tenses the same
- Make sure subject/verb agreement is constant
- Watch for spelling errors
Once the second draft is written, compare it to the first draft. The simple act of repetition will impress upon you the writing skills you need to use. This process an actually be used with short stories, poetry, and song lyrics. You can write and rewrite as many times as you want using as many different essays as you wish for modeling.
The concept goal is for the writer to learn to build a strong foundation from the best writer’s before he sets off on your own. It is similar to using training wheel before to bike without a support system. As the demand of quality increases, as the child gets older, this method can still be used. You would just want to make sure that the essays you model are at the right level of quality and difficulty. Use this writing system to improve your writing skills, and before you know it you will be an accomplished writer.