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Beginner’s Guide to the TOEFL Independent Essay

Beginner’s Guide to the TOEFL Independent Essay

This guide is actually for low-level students writing their TOEFL that is first independent. Advanced students may decide to skip right to our advanced guide.

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(note, students pretty quickly might wish to skip straight to our TOEFL essay templates)

Begin by making an overview of one’s essay. Go through the picture below:

The student starts by writing a point that is“main at the top of the chart. This will be her “answer” into the question posed by the exam.

Underneath the main point the student writes two “reasons” to guide the main point. These are broad and never too specific. However, they must be unique. The causes should not be just like one another.

The student writes two “details. below each one of the reasons” they are more specific. They offer the reasons and explain why they have cited the reasons. They might also include examples from the student’s life that support the reason why.

Here’s an illustration outline for the question: “What is the gift that is best to offer to a young child?” It was compiled by an student that is actual. Look at it closely:

The student has filled in the outline using point-form notes (not complete sentences). Her main point is “Best gift = pet.”

Her two reasons are “it is educational” and “it is a good friend.”

The information through the reason that is first “learn responsibility” and “learn stages of life.” The information from the second reason are “never judgmental” and “children often alone these days.” The student has bigger ideas. this woman is going to write on how care that is taking of pet teaches responsibility and this woman is going to write that students are along because their parents are often away. however the outline is simply her initial ideas.

The rest with this article will show how to turn this outline into a essay that is complete. I’ll use simple English throughout the article. High level students should probably use more vocabulary that is advanced sentence structure.

I teach my students to write a four paragraph essay in the writing section that is independent. This sort of essay is for enough time and may be completed in the time allowed. High level students might try writing a five paragraph essay.

The four paragraph structure is:

  • Introductory Paragraph
  • Body Paragraph 1
  • Body Paragraph 2
  • Concluding Paragraph

Let’s start with the paragraph that is introductory

My students use a sentence-by-sentence strategy to write their introductions. The technique is this:

  • Sentence one: A “hook.” This is certainly an interesting sentence that comes before most of your point. It references the relevant question and draws your reader in to the essay.
  • Sentence two: most of your point. In one single good, clear sentence state most of your point. Don’t be a long time. Get to the point!
  • Sentence three: A transitional sentence. Try something like “I feel this means for two reasons.”
  • Sentence four: a single sentence summary of the first reason. Begin this sentence with “first” (you can leave this out if you are low on time).
  • Sentence five: A one sentence summary of your second reason. Begin this sentence with “second” (you can leave this out if you’re low on time).

Referring to the relevant question above and utilizing the given template, you can write an introduction similar to this:

“There are many great gifts that could be fond of a child. I think that the best gift to offer a child is a pet. Personally I think because of this for just two major causes, that we will explore in the following essay. First, a pet can be quite educational. Second, a pet could be a great friend to a young child.

Remember that there aren’t any references to your details in this paragraph. Save those when it comes to physical body paragraphs.

Third step: Writing a physical body paragraph

This is your chance to show your essay off writing ability. I don’t teach a strict model for this part of the essay.

I do however, involve some basic rules. They truly are:

  1. Each reason gets its own paragraph. Do not combine your reasons into one paragraph.
  2. Start very first paragraph with a word that is transitional phrase like “first,” “to start with,” and the second paragraph with “second” or “secondly.”
  3. At the beginning of each body paragraph, clearly state your reason. Don’t use a hook, just arrive at the point. Next, state your details one after another, expanding every one to 3 or four sentences. You can expand by including a personal example from your life. Including personal examples from your life within the essay is okay. In reality, I recommend it.
  4. You will need to use transitional phrases in in the middle of your details (“moreover,” “furthermore,” “also”).

Here is an example body paragraph made making use of the above outline:

“To begin with, a pet is a very gift that is educational. Having a pet teaches children responsibility. A pet has to be fed every and be given a chance to exercise day. Who owns a pet also has to see the health of the pet and do something if it becomes sick. Practicing this variety of responsibility will make a young child more aged. Moreover, a pet often helps teach a child about the stages of life. Animals grow even faster than humans and a child that is young learn a lot by observing how their pet grows up. I had a pet gecko as a kid and watching it grow from a baby to a full-sized adult taught me a whole lot and got me very thinking about biology and nature.”

Note that this paragraph followed the outline above quite closely. I stated my reason and then supported it with details. I expanded the facts significantly through the point-form utilized in my outline.

My second body paragraph is created in much the way that is same

“Secondly, I feel that a pet makes great friend. It really is advantageous to children to own pets since they are never judgmental. A child may have a bad trip to school or he may get in a fight together with his friends, but he can never fight together with pet. It will love him unconditionally. Furthermore, pets can possibly prevent children from being lonely. These days parents in many cases are too busy to invest time using their children. They often times leave their kids home alone. This could leave some kids feeling lonely, but those with pets will feel alone. never

And that’s the body that is whole of essay! Focus on the way I used words that are transitional”moreover” and “furthermore”) in between the 2 details in each paragraph.

I’m not a big fan of lengthy concluding paragraphs, primarily because the independent essay is pretty short. But i actually do teach a three sentence technique:

  • Sentence one: re-state your point that is main and with a phrase like “to sum it up…”
  • Sentence two: restate your two reasons, starting with a phrase that is transitional “this is because…”
  • Sentence three: once more, restate your main point but use different words

Here’s a conclusion for the essay we’ve been working with:

“To sum it up, personally i think that a pet is the absolute best gift to offer to a child. It is because pets have become educational, in addition they make great friends. There actually is no better gift that a young child can receive than a pet.”

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