Why is Persuasive Writing Important in Your ESL Class?

Are you teaching persuasive writing techniques to your learners, but you lack a step-by-step guided writing document to help even your struggling writers? This Opinion Text (persuasive essay) Workbook is the latest version of the document I’ve been using for years in mixed ability classrooms.

Nurture your learners’ interests and listen to what they have to say

Expressing one’s point of view or taking a standpoint on an issue is very important, especially in an ESL class, and students need to acquire the necessary techniques to express their view supported with relevant arguments. From my experience as an ESL teacher, justifying one’s reasoning is not always an easy task for students. Logical thinking is a skill that learners should be able to use across disciplines. That is why persuasive writing is a very good exercise to develop and reinforce students’ ability of formulating clear and coherent ideas to justify their position on any issue. In addition, let us not forget that most teenagers always have an opinion about things, so why not nurture their interests and listen to what they have to say?

Therefore, I wanted to find a method that helps students learn how to write a well-structured and coherent opinion piece. I consider that explicit modeling, guided writing practice, and frequent corrective feedback are the strategies that have helped my students become more proficient in writing. So, this Opinion Text Writing Study Guide is the result of years of testing and improving this resource in an effort to create a comprehensive tool that significantly improves all my students’ writing skills. 

What is included in this guided writing pack?

This resource, which is also available in online version for Google Docs, features two persuasive essays/opinion text essays (text models/mentor texts) and a deconstructed step-by-step-guide modelling the steps of writing an introduction, formulating a clear position on an issue, writing supporting paragraphs, and a conclusion to persuade (purpose) the reader of one's point of view.

After teaching each component of a persuasive/opinion text, there is an activity that allows students to practice what they have learned. Once all elements have been covered, there is a list of possible questions/issues students may take a position on. Then, they write their own persuasive essay/opinion text using the writing process: planning, drafting, correcting & revising and writing the final version of their essay.

The planning guide (How to Use This Resource?) also features an extra activity to prepare students for learning and some guidelines to using this activity pack.

What else will you find?

♦Extra practice for planning phase (student worksheet)

♦Extra sheets for writing – writing template (editable instructions)

♦Teacher’s copy with answer key

♦Opinion piece/persuasive writing assessment rubric

An ideal tool for ESL teachers in Québec

This resource is ideal for both ESL and ELA learners, grades 8-11.

If you teach in Québec (CA), this resource is your must-have tool to prepare your Grade 11 learners for the written production part of their Ministerial Examination. It contains everything they need to know to confidently write an opinion piece. 

A classroom-tested resource

Two years ago, two of my new ESL colleagues joined me and used this document in their ESL classes. Their feedback were really positive and they definitely wished to work with this teaching material in other schools in the future. Last year, my two former colleagues continued using this opinion text writing guide to prepare their senior high school learners for their Ministerial Examination.

Last but not least, I myself have successfully used this workbook in my Grade 10-11 groups and, this year, my students have enjoyed working with this updated version for the first time.

Want to know more?

Take a peek at the preview document on the Teachers Pay Teachers or MieuxEnseigner.ca website to learn more. 

Happy teaching!


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