Did you just bring home a school assignment that asked you to write an essay on COVID-19 and how its impacted your life and the world around you? This post will give you ideas tips for approaching this essay in its various forms for your english class.
* We have another video for the Common Application Version linked here.
The first type of essay that you might have to write is about how COVID-19 has impacted you personally. One of the biggest problems that students have when writing this essay is writing vague or cliche things that everyone else is writing. This is in part due to the pandemic impacting all of us in similar ways. We’re going to list some “Do”s and “Don’t”s to help you out.
1. DON’T Just List Activities You Can’t Do Anymore
For example, saying that you can’t go to sporting events, concerts, or volunteer events anymore isn’t particularly special. Having to wear a mask when you go outside is also pretty obvious. Listing it all out doesn’t feel very personal, and teachers are probably looking for stories personalized to you. They want to know how it has impacted you as a person and changed your experience.
2. DON’T Just Add a Single Line Emotional Response to the List
This isn’t quite enough either. For example, saying that you miss your friends and that it makes you sad is pretty trite. But how do you break free of these cliches? Here’s what you should do instead:
Figure Out Your Story
While the prompts for these essays may be really broad, you have to make it narrow. The narrower your story is, the more interesting it becomes. Specifics are your friend, and specifics make everything more exciting to read. Aim for a narrower question, and more specifics.
Start by asking yourself different questions. For example, focus on what happened this week that was hard, and focus on how COVID-19 made it harder. Why was a challenge more challenging because of COVID-19? However, this doesn’t mean everything you talk about COVID-19 has to be specific.
How to Write the Introduction
One thing you can try is to use a flashback. Talk about how life was like before the pandemic, and then tell a story of what life is like during and after the pandemic. Then, you can consider comparing and contrasting.
Writing the essay inside out might also be helpful. This means that you write the body paragraphs first, and then move on to the introduction and conclusion. Once you figure out the significant ideas, you can go back and flesh out the remainder. Another great way to write an introduction is to create context and contrast. Context is sort of life setting the stage. Maybe it’s something you researched that reveals the broad impact of COVID-19.
How to Write a Broader Story Essay
How do you write about how COVID-19 has impacted our world in general? If this is your prompt, you won’t be able to simply narrow the scope and tell a story about your own experience. Instead, you should research. Find articles, Op-Eds, and opinion pieces on your topic.
Nevertheless, you still want to narrow your scope. Take your topic, and pick a specific facet of the world that is impacted. Maybe you can analyze how COVID-19 has impacted the world economically. Maybe you can consider how the mental health of small children in particular was impacted. Again, narrowing the scope will make writing a lot easier. If you’re writing a broader paper, aim for one to two sources per paragraph that you write.
If you have any comments or questions, please drop them by the accompanying YouTube video!