Parents Guide to Writing Private High School Application Essays

Your teenager’s entrance into private high school cannot be taken for granted. With public schools beset with a variety of problems – discipline, poor test results, safety – private high schools offer your child a quality education in a safe environment.

When you request an information package from a private high school, you will discover that essays and short answer essays are required from both you and your teenager. Your teen, who should be comfortable with answering essay style questions will be asked about his academic strengths and weaknesses, his desire to attend the private school and about his hobbies and extra-curricular activities. Questions directed to parents, however, often have a different focus and are designed with different purposes in mind.

Usually, the essay questions directed to parents are analytical in nature. Instead of asking for facts, these questions ask you to speak about your teens character, to discuss family dynamics and to gauge your role as a supporter of the private school. Private high school admittance directors recognize that teenagers who are brought up in a stable, education focused home, are much more likely to succeed than their peers who have less support at home.

Similarly, private school administrators look at your essay answers to determine whether you can be counted on to support the high school financially or through volunteer work. As you might imagine, administrators cannot legally or ethically ask some of these questions but they can draw inferences based on your answers to application questions.

Analytical Questions

For example, an entrance application question may ask what you believe your child can contribute to the XYZ school. This type of question is really asking you to speak to your child’s academic, social, athletic and out-of-school interests. If you have visited the school, reference your visit to show that you have made an effort to learn more about the school. Your answer should address each of your child’s areas of interest and strength. Here is a sample answer to this question:

During our recent visit to the XYZ School, Tommy pointed out to me the well equipped science lab and asked a number of questions about the science curriculum available to students at the school. Tommy has a long standing interest in studying science and he has performed well in elementary school and we believe that he will bring that interest and aptitude to his high school studies. His current teachers note that Tommy regularly asks thoughtful and insightful questions in class. In addition to working hard to perform well academically, Tommy will be an willing participant in the school’s baseball team and/or its marching band. Tommy keeps a busy schedule during the school year and as a well rounded and serious young man, he will represent the ideals and message of the XYZ School now and in the future.

Family Stability and Religious Questions

Other questions will more directly ask you about your future participation in school fund raising and other activities. These questions are designed to evaluate the stability of your home life and your future financial support potential. For example a religious school application might ask about the role your religion plays in your life. A non-religious school might ask why you are considering the XYZ School. Here is a sample answer to this type of question:

Our family is an active member of XYZ church. We are active members of the social action committee and every Thanksgiving, our entire family, including Tommy and his two sisters, volunteer at the XYZ Church gently used clothing center where we help distribute gently used clothes to homeless people. Tommy and his sisters have been greatly impacted by this activity as well as other church related functions. With a hands-on opportunity to minister to the less fortunate, Tommy has a personal understanding of the message of XYZ religion. We try to reinforce that message at home by attending services regularly and making daily prayer a part of our routine. At the XYZ Private Elementary School, both my husband and I have served on the Board of Directors and we are active participants in the school’s Feed the Hungry annual campaign.

Answers like the ones set out above are designed to send a message to school administrators that both you and your teen are serious, dedicated and stable people who will fit in well with the community that develops within a particular private school. If you make an effort to study the type of community that exists within a particular school and you model your entrance questionnaire essay to that community, you greatly enhance your child’s chances at gaining admission.

Essay Writing: How to Organise Your Thoughts

Some people think that writing is an innate skill and people are born with it. You will be surprised to know, that this statement is not true. Writing an essay means developing your skills. Organization of your thoughts in essay composition makes the marked difference between a good and poor essay. A student may have great ideas, but unorganised thoughts and alignment of paragraphs may not result into an impactful essay.

Always remember there are bad writers and not bad readers. Therefore, the organisation of your thoughts on paper must be such that readers may not find it hard to understand the meaning of the sentences.

The three most important components, which make a good essay, are:

– Thesis

– Supporting points

– Conclusion

Thesis defines the purpose of your writing. Once you have answered your question about the central point of your writing, you will know how to frame your composition. In the last line of your introduction, you must mention about the thesis. The reader will get the hint about the focal point in your essay.

Supporting points are the information, which proves your stated points. They are the evidences, which support your statements. In case if you do not have enough supporting points, then you must rework on your thesis or come up with a new thesis. For each supporting point, you must have a separate paragraph. The word count of your essay will determine how many supporting points you require.

Conclusion is the final and the most important component of your essay. Here you must recall your thesis. Do not repeat words or sentences. You have to reframe your words and sentences in such a way that you make the readers agree to your decisions in the essay.

You must keep some simple points in mind. Just as you, do not build a house without its blue print. Similarly and essay requires a blue print. Outline of your essay is very important. You may feel it is monotonous but outline of your composition helps in organisation of your thoughts. Disorganised essay writing means there is no planning involved.

Once you have given an outline to your essay, now you know that you will not deviate from your point. Write as per your essay outline.

The final step is the proofreading. You will spoil your essay if you have grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. You can take help from your friends or parents who will point out your mistakes. Often a writer is not able to pin point his errors, this is the reason you must involve somebody else for proof reading.

If you follow these steps in your essay, writing you will create a good essay. The formulation of an outlined plan is like a math formula, which gives you exact ways to progress in your essay writing. For a good essay writing incorporate these steps in your composition your readers will get the basic facts and information behind your essay writing.

Hope these tips would be useful for you. More information about how to write an essay you can find at my essay writing blog.

Successful Steps to Good Essay Writing

Often students try to avoid essay writing in their normal study course. However, they forget that essay writing is the most important part of the curriculum. Today due to competition there is a high expectation from students. With the burden of academic subjects, students often become careless about essay writing. They do not get enough time to think about developing a good essay writing skill.

However, with the advent of technology, things have become quite easy for students. The online essay writing services educate the students how to write a good essay.

Consider these simple steps and become a professional essay writer:

1. Consider essay as a process and not a task bounded with deadlines. You have to consider reading, thinking, planning and organizing your thoughts. You have to understand the topic and study about the topic. Primary research is very important before drafting your thoughts. Once you are finished with research process, start thinking creatively about the topic and make notes or pointers, which will help you during documentation process.

2. The blank screen or paper in front of you while drafting essay is the most difficult part of the process. You must sketch out a plan before writing. Once you have written down your points, start assembling these points. Give each point a logical heading; this will help you to elaborate your points. These will later develop into paragraphs of your essay.

The most important subheads will include:

An introduction, which will explain the sources of your study

Main body, which is an analysis of your topic. It will include the opinions, comments and findings. You can quote about some scientific research or media studies.

Conclusion is where you force the reader to accept your points. You can conclude with quotes or even end with a question that will boggle reader’s mind.

All these points will give you an outline to your essay writing. Do not stick to one point. This makes the reader disinterested in your writing.

3. Your correct English is the most compelling part of essay writing. Use simple but correct English. Your essay may not be flowery in writing but must have substance in the subject. If it is argumentative, you must collect enough data to make it genuine. To improve on these points you must read many editorial sections from magazines or newspapers.

4. Try to make a rough draft of your essay before submission. You must read it aloud and look for any changes if required. If your essay is long or it is a dissertation, you must prepare small drafts of paragraphs and then try to focus on each paragraph. Try to make pointers on these paragraphs, which will help you during the assembly of all paragraphs. Do not lose track of your point or argument. In case if you are lost, refer to points.

5. Essays are small samples of knowledge. You cannot elaborate on an endless discussion. You must give it a strong voice and back up with supportive arguments and discussions. The essay must invoke reader’s thought process. Keep everything in moderation. Do not lose your focus.

Essay is an array of thoughts and ideas. Right alignment of thought process with strong command over English develops a person from good essay writer to professional essay writer.

Plessy vs Ferguson – African American History Essay

1892

The U.S. Supreme Court: the highest court in the land. Their job: to decide the constitutionality of cases. But is that what they are really doing? Can we trust that their decisions are just? Two important cases in history can help answer this question. A 1896 U.S. Supreme Court case, Plessy v. Ferguson, made facilities and schools separate based on race. In another case in 1954, Brown v. Board of Education, the court reversed its decision and said that separate was not equal. These two cases teach two lessons about the U.S. Supreme Court. Plessy shows that our justice system has failed at times to establish justice. Brown shows that even though the Court rules justly, justice isn’t guaranteed.

Many events led up to Plessy v. Ferguson. For example: after the Congress withdrew federal troops from the South in 1877, conditions for blacks deteriorated. The government pushed blacks into an inferior position. The government took action to prevent blacks from voting immediately.

They embarked poll taxes, “grandfather clauses”. They also segregated on trains, in parks, schools, restaurants, theaters, swimming pools, and even cemeteries. If blacks broke these segregation laws, they were likely to end up either in prison or dead!

The case of Plessy v. Ferguson was a very important case in American History because it enforced segregation even making it legal, and made segregation a concrete reality for the people of the United States. It began with a man called Homer Plessy. Plessy was 7/8 white and only had 1/8 drop of black blood in him, but under Louisiana law, was considered black. In 1890, Louisiana passed a law providing that “all railway companies carrying passengers in their coaches in this state shall provide equal but separate accommodations for the white and colored races, by providing two or more passenger coaches for each passenger train, or by dividing the passenger coaches by a partition so as to secure separate accommodations.” Plessy believed that the law was unjust and so he challenged the law by refusing to leave the white railroad car. He was arrested and taken to trial. At this trial he argued that the Separate Car Act violated the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution. But he was found guilty. Plessy then appealed the decision to the Supreme Court of Louisiana. Again his case was upheld. Plessy appealed again in 1896 to the Supreme Court of the United States. Homer Plessy was found guilty once again. The impact of the court’s decision was a harsh one. It created a reality that was a nightmare to many. Their lives would be changed dramatically. They would officially be separated and considered low down in society.

Plessy v. Ferguson was the law of the land until 1954, when it was finally, successfully overturned by Brown v. Board of Education. In 1954, a little girl named Linda Brown in Topeka, Kansas had to walk 5 miles to school. She didn’t get recess and could not play with any of the other children who were all white. Her parents filed a case to the U.S. Supreme Court saying that there is no way blacks and whites could get equal education if they were separated. The court ruled that separate is not equal.

The amount of time between Plessy v. Ferguson and Brown v. Board of Education shows just how long it took to get justice for blacks from the Supreme Court. It amazes me that our government could even question if blacks have the right to justice. It should be basic knowledge for us to know that it is wrong to treat any people so unjustly. Just to prove my point here are some questions you can ask yourself: are blacks human beings just like whites? Do blacks and whites both have feelings and needs? And finally, is the only difference between blacks and whites is that they have a different complexion? I am confused as to why so many people, including Justices on our Supreme Court would not answer yes to all these questions. How could anyone who had any intelligence think it was acceptable to treat blacks differently?

Fortunately the Court did come to its senses in Brown v. Board of Education. Yet just because The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that separate is not equal it did not mean that blacks were automatically treated equally. After Brown v. Board of Education happened, there needed to be the Civil Rights Movement, in which many people were involved to push society to change. Two people who led the Civil Rights Movement were Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. We must acknowledge that it wasn’t only those people, there were others working and helping the same cause. There were many ways that they impacted The Civil Rights Movement. They gave speeches, wrote letters, led marches, held meetings and many other strategies. They also endured mental and physical hardships. Only through the Civil Rights Movement did the promise of Brown actually get achieved. These people were poor, wealthy, high class, low class, black, some white, short and tall. Basically, there was a wide range of different kinds of people. Not everyone automatically changed their frame of mind when The U.S. Supreme Court ruled separate is not equal. There were still many people out there who were racist and wanted to keep blacks in an inferior position.

How to Answer the UC Wait List Essay

Being in California, the UC schools loom large for a lot of my students. Many of their parents have attended UC schools, and the system’s stellar reputation combined with its low sticker price make these schools top choices for many of my students and their families. Admissions decisions for the UC schools are being released throughout the month of March, bringing good news – and some disappointment – to high school students around the world. But for some students, the decision exists somewhere between a yes and a no, in the form of the wait list.

One of the challenging things about the UC application is that there’s one form that covers all the schools. So whether you’re applying to one school or multiples, you only get to submit one application, one set of essays, and one list of your activities and achievements. When all the schools see the same materials, there’s not an opportunity to discuss specifically what you love about any particular school. Unless you get invited to join the wait list.

Many colleges will accept and even encourage waitlisted students to submit new information. It might be your most recent quarter grades to show colleges that your upward trend is continuing. Or it might be an award or honor you’ve received in the last few months. But the UCs are unique in that they have a required essay for students who wish to be put on the wait list. UC Davis’s prompt reads, “Please briefly tell us why you feel UC Davis is the right place for you to continue your education.” Students might bemoan the fact that they have to write yet another essay for their college applications, but I see this as a wonderful opportunity to tell a college why you’re interested in going there, and why you’re still excited about it months after you first submitted your application.

The key to this kind of essay is getting personal. I always encourage my students to think about how other students might answer this prompt. They will likely talk about how strong the [insert your major] program is. They might say something about how nice the campus is. They might talk about how much they like the town of Davis, or the facilities, or the sports teams. But these responses are missing a crucial element: why is that important to you? And moreover, why is that unique to UC Davis? Maybe you like the campus because you grew up in a city, and you love the idea of looking out your dorm room window and seeing open fields for miles. Maybe you like the town of Davis because when you visited, you found this quirky coffee shop where a bunch of students were studying together, and you could immediately picture yourself there, having intellectual debates over cold brew coffee. Whatever your reason, you have to make it specific to the school and specific to yourself. So if you have the chance to write one of these essays, seize it, and give the most compelling reasons for why you’re a great fit.