Beginner’s Guide to the TOEFL Independent Essay

Beginner’s Guide to the TOEFL Independent Essay

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

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(note, students in a rush may decide to skip straight to our TOEFL essay templates)

Begin by making a plan of one’s essay. Look at the picture below:

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

Underneath the main point the student writes two “reasons” to aid the main point. These are broad rather than too specific. However, they have to be unique. The reasons shouldn’t be similar to each other.

The student writes two “details. below each of the reasons” they are more specific. They offer the reasons and explain why they usually 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’s the gift that is best to provide to a young child?” It was written by an student that is actual. Consider it closely:

The student has filled when you look at the outline using point-form notes (not complete sentences). Her main point is gift that is“Best pet.”

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

The information from the reason that is first “learn responsibility” and “learn stages of life.” The important points through the second reason are “never judgmental” and “children often alone these days.” The student has bigger ideas. she actually is likely to write about how taking good care of the pet teaches responsibility and this woman is planning to write that students are along because their parents are often away. but the outline is just her ideas that are initial.

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

I teach my students to create a four paragraph essay into the independent writing section. This type of essay is for enough time and certainly will be completed in the time allowed. Higher level students might try writing a five essay that is paragraph.

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 way to write their introductions. The technique is this:

  • Sentence one: A “hook.” That is an sentence that is interesting comes before your main point. It references the question and draws your reader into the essay.
  • Sentence two: your primary point. In a single good, clear sentence state most of your point. Don’t be too much time. Arrive at the purpose!
  • Sentence three: a sentence that is transitional. Try something like “I feel this method for two reasons.”
  • Sentence four: a single sentence summary of your first reason. Begin this sentence with “first” (you can leave this out if you should be low on time).
  • Sentence five: a single sentence summary of one’s second reason. Begin this sentence with “second” (you can leave this out if you should be low on time).

Referring to the question above and with the given template, you might write an introduction such as this:

“There are many great gifts that could be directed at a child. I believe that the best gift to give a young child is a pet. Personally I think in this way for just two major causes, that I will explore within the following essay. First, a pet can be very educational. Second, a pet can be an excellent friend to a young child.

Keep in mind that there are no references to your details in this paragraph. Save those for the physical body paragraphs.

Step three: Writing a body paragraph

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

I actually do however, have some rules that are basic. They have been:

  1. Each reason gets its very 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 begin with,” and your second paragraph with “second” or „secondly.”
  3. At the beginning of each physical body paragraph, clearly state your reason. Avoid using a hook, just get to the point. Next, state your details one after another, expanding every one to 3 or four sentences. You are able to expand by including a example that is personal your life. Including examples that are personal your lifetime within the essay is okay. In reality, i will suggest it.
  4. Make an effort to use transitional phrases in betwixt your details (“moreover,” “furthermore,” “also”).

Listed here is an example body paragraph made making use of the outline that is above

„To begin with, a pet is a tremendously educational gift. Having a pet teaches children responsibility. A pet has got to be fed every day and become given the opportunity to exercise. The master of a pet comes with to see the ongoing health of the pet and take action if it becomes sick. Practicing this style of responsibility will likely make a child more mature. Moreover, a pet can help teach a young child about the stages of life. Animals grow considerably 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 child and watching it grow from a baby to a adult that is full-sized me a whole lot and got me very enthusiastic about biology and nature.”

Note that the outline was followed by this paragraph above quite closely. I stated my reason after which supported it with details. I expanded the main points significantly through the point-form utilized in my outline.

My second body paragraph is created in much the same manner:

„Secondly, personally i think that a pet makes great friend. It really is beneficial to children to have pets since they are never judgmental. A kid could have a day that is college homework help bad school or he could be in a fight together with friends, but he will never fight together with pet. It will love him unconditionally. Furthermore, pets can possibly prevent children from being lonely. These days parents are often too busy to pay time along with their children. They frequently leave their kids home alone. This may leave some kids feeling lonely, but those with pets will feel alone. never

And that is the whole body of my essay! Look closely at the way I used words that are transitional”moreover” and „furthermore”) in the middle the two details in each paragraph.

I’m not a big fan of lengthy concluding paragraphs, for the reason that the essay that is independent pretty short. But i really do teach a three sentence technique:

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

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

“To sum it up, I feel that a pet may be the very best gift to offer to a child. The reason being pets are very educational, plus they make great friends. There really is no better gift that a young child can receive than a pet.”

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