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Recommendations For Creating A Compare And Contrast Essay For Middle School Students

In simple words, a compare and contrast essay is one in which you underscore the similarities and differences between two topics, with one often emerging as winner. However, the concept is often unclear to students just beginning middle school, which is usually when these types of papers are introduced. If you need help with your own, here are some recommendations:

What to do so your compare and contrast essay is a hit—tips for middle school students:

  • Make a table: This is the easiest way to see which of the two sides in your paper is heavier. Before you begin writing, make a small table with two columns. In one, write down all the pros and cons associated with the first topic. In the other, do the same for topic two. Now, you have the figurative clay which you are eventually going to shape into your essay. Making a table will show you exactly how many and what kind of points you need to balance your paper.
  • Make an outline: Once you have the table ready, make a rough outline. If it is a five paragraph essay, you could keep a paragraph each for the two topics. Write down very briefly and precisely what you want to include in the paragraph. Thus, you will have prepared the frame for your writing and minimized any chances for deviating from the topic.
  • Stick to one format: There are two ways to write a compare and contrast essay. One is the paragraph style discussed above. The second entails delineating each topic pointwise: you take one point and discuss it from the point of view of both topics before moving to the next one. Before you begin, pick the style you are comfortable with and stick to it throughout the paper. Do not begin with points and switch to paragraphs halfway through or vice versa.
  • Refrain from picking a side: It is obvious that one point may win out over the other one, but the same should not show in your writing. As far as possible, try to keep your work objective, that is, do not show bias for one subject and disregard the other. Remember: your essay is not a debate.
  • Think like the audience: Think of what you would want to read if you were not the one writing the paper. Imagine how you would like the information presented to you, in a concise, objective, and comprehensive manner or utter chaos? When you think in terms of reading, you will have a better understanding of what to expect from your writing.

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