Getting Started A challenge many kids (and adults) face writing essays is getting started. The person sits there waiting for inspiration to hit them like a lightening bolt and it never happens. What can you as a parent do to help? Encourage them with the thought that great essays are never written the first time over. Get them to view essay writing as a three-part process. The first draft is only to get out the ideas and words in rough form. In the second and third effort they will add to their essay where there are blanks clarify ideas and give it a final polish. Realising that an essay isnt supposed to be perfect the first time you write it really helps some people.
As any writer will know they are not the best person to look for any errors or omissions in their work. Read it through certainly pick up some obvious mistakes of course. However being too close to your writing is one of the reasons that book editors exist and of course the same applies to essay writing.
The perception that no part of the essay writing process can be "systematized" (i.e. repeated over and over again) is flawed. It overlooks the fact that the structure of virtually every type of essay follows the same format. American high school English classes focus almost exclusively on the content of an essay. Since each essay assignment deals with new subject matter students assume that all essays are different. They dont realize that "topic" is an irrelevant factor. There is very little discussion about the format of a properly structured essay.