Inspiration Lesson Plan: Persuasive Essay


Inspiration 9


Persuasive Essay

Subject: Language Arts

Grades: 9-12
Ages: 14-18


Lesson Objective
Students always have opinions, but they don’t always know how to persuade someone else to accept their point of view. This Inspiration® lesson introduces students to persuasive writing and rhetorical technique.


Teacher Instructions

  1. In the week leading up to this lesson, have students read editorials from newspapers, magazines or online news sources. You may choose to assign specific editorials or allow students to find their own sources. Encourage students to take notes about their reading, paying close attention to good writing and techniques which make the reader reconsider an issue.
  2. As a whole class, brainstorm issues that students feel strongly about, recording their information in Diagram View using the RapidFire® tool.

    Rapid Fire Tool


  4. Break students into small groups. Each group should choose a specific issue, research the facts and arguments, choose a stance and begin to build out a graphic organizer in support of that stance. Encourage students to settle on several major reasons for their stance, as well as supporting facts or details for each of those reasons.

    Diagram View


  6. As students are building out their graphic organizers, ask them to consider the opposite stance, and arguments that could be made by the other side. For example, if students are arguing that school uniforms are beneficial, they will want to consider arguments against school uniforms, and form counterarguments.
  7. Students can switch to Outline View to expand their ideas with notes and build out their essay. Or, have them open Persuasive from Inspiration Starter>Templates>Language Arts. The structure in Outline View helps students build a persuasive essay using the prompts to generate ideas. The completed template will form the rough draft of the persuasive essay. Students can then use the Transfer tool to finalize their writing in a word processor.

    Outline View



  • Confirm that the student’s view is supported through the use of facts and well-stated opinions.
  • Confirm that the student has identified his or her subject and purpose, and established credibility within their essay.

Lesson Adaptations

  • Assign topics to pairs of students and have them take opposing sides. After both students in each pair have written an essay, have them trade points of view.
  • Direct students to debate alternate resolutions to dilemmas in literature. For example, how might Hamlet or Romeo have addressed their problems?
  • Have students expand upon their essay by creating a persuasive presentation using Inspiration's Presentation Manager.
  • As a lesson opener, choose a topic of interest to students and discuss pros and cons. Have students work in pairs to write a conversation between two people who represent different sides of the argument.