10 Writing Tips Every High School Student Needs to Know December 19 2011

I know the title of this post says "High School," but I really think this list is applicable to any grade and any age, so I included the article here at TRC!

High school is the time when you begin to transition from childhood to adulthood. With this transition comes the development and refinement of skills such as writing. To prepare high school students for their college years, the following are 10 writing tips every high school student needs to know:

  1. Be sure to answer the question. Regardless of the type of assignment, if there is some sort of writing prompt, be sure you fully answer the question or questions posed in the prompt. It's easy to get sidetracked and accidentally write unnecessary or irrelevant information.
  2. Read a lot! One of the best ways to become a better writer is to read often. Reading exposes you to different writing styles, expands your vocabulary and cements basic English rules in your brain.
  3. Keep a journal. Not only will this be a memento you'll enjoy looking back on when you're older, but it will also help hone your writing skills. Journaling will help you learn to effectively transform the ideas in your head into words on paper.
  4. Start with an outline. Although it may seem like extra effort, the time you spend working on your outline for a high school writing assignment will directly reduce the amount of time you spend composing the final paper.
  5. Don't use "textese." The style of writing many people use to compose text messages is not appropriate for academic writing. “Prolly,” “gonna” and other text-friendly words should never find their way into your high school writing.
  6. When all else fails, just write. Don't just sit there staring at your computer screen because you're uncertain how to start an assignment. Skip the introduction and come back to it. Plow through writer's block and edit later.
  7. Don't worry if it's not perfect at first. It's better to get your ideas down on paper while they're fresh in your head and the creative juices are flowing. When you're done, you can then go back and polish your writing.
  8. Proofread every assignment thoroughly. Even if the last thing you want to do is spend more time reviewing your work, do it! Proofreading your work will help ensure that you catch all of the mistakes you made during the writing process and your grades will directly benefit from this extra effort.
  9. Read your writing out loud. When proofreading, read your writing out loud. Your ears will often hear grammatical errors and awkward sentences that your eyes miss.
  10. Write when you have energy. Don't wait until late at night to do homework that requires a significant amount of writing. You'll make more mistakes and your writing will suffer.

Randall Davidson is the lead project manager at ProofreadingServices.Us, a company that offers academic proofreading services. ProofreadingServices.Us is particularly well-known for offering essay proofreading services to high school and college students.