How To Improve Your ISEE Essay
The ISEE essay is not scored. But, you can request for your essay to be photocopied and sent to certain schools – or you can leave it off your ISEE report entirely.
But, why wouldn’t you send your ISEE essay to every school? If you don’t send it, private schools are just going to think you’re hiding something from them. Not sending an essay tells schools you didn’t care enough to prepare for it. At which point, they’ll draw their own conclusions.
Is this student lazy? Do they have poor grammar skills? Do they have zero confidence in their writing? Those are the impressions you’ll leave, and elite schools will not accept those kinds of students.
So, you need to prepare for the ISEE essay as if it were any other section. A strong essay tells schools you’re willing to take the extra step, even when it’s not necessary. A lot of students will shy away from submitting their essay, giving you a great chance to stand out.
Essay prompt: You’ll have 30 minutes to respond to a given prompt. The prompts won’t be too complicated, and most will ask simple questions like: describe your favorite book? What’s your fondest memory? What do you want to be when you grow up?
Make a point: The essays don’t require any previous knowledge, and there’s no right or wrong answer. Basically, private schools want to see that you have strong grammar skills, that you can articulate your thoughts, and that you can coherently string together sentences. If you can show that, you have a solid essay. But, if you want a great essay, you need to make a legitimate point and convince your reader of something.
Say the prompt is to describe what your favorite book is, and you choose to write about Charlotte’s Web. Now, if you can convince your reader that this is the greatest book ever written, you will score very well on your essay.
Five paragraph essay: Get used to this structure because you’re going to use it constantly. For this, you need an intro paragraph to state your point, three paragraphs of examples to support your point, and a conclusion to wrap it all up.
For the Charlotte’s Web being the best book ever written argument, your essay structure could look like this:
First paragraph: Charlotte’s Web is one of – if not the – best books ever written. E.B White (the author of the novel) created a great plot, unique and recognizable characters and helped her readers learn something new.
Second paragraph: Great plot. You could write about how the plot was interesting and relevant to both children and adults, which took the book to new levels.
Third paragraph: Unique and recognizable characters. Use specific examples with the characters of Charlotte or Wilbur. Write about how they were well-developed and provided personality and color to the book.
Fourth paragraph: learn something new. You could write that reading this book opened up your eyes to a whole new world of farming, fairs, and how slaughtering animals fits into farm life. You could also talk about the accurate portrayals of this area.
Conclusion: Now just restate that Charlotte’s Web is one of the best books ever written because it has a great plot, interesting characters – and when the reader finishes it, he/she learns something new.
Organize your thoughts: Before you start writing your essay, decide what examples you want to use. If you just start writing right away, you might realize your examples are weak. Then, you’ll have to start all over, and everyone knows how precious time is on the ISEE essay.
Work with an ISEE tutor: You can know everything there is to know about writing a great ISEE essay. But, to truly master it, you’ll need to work with a private ISEE essay tutor. Your tutor can help you better understand how to impress private schools with your writing.
Contact Varsity Tutors today for more information on how to improve your ISEE score. Ask about how an ISEE tutor can help you improve your essay score.