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A Brief Guide To Writing An Opinion Essay For 4th Grade Students


Opinion essays are just what they sound like—homework on your opinion about something. If your child in the 4th grade has been assigned this kind of paper, keep reading for some tips on helping him or her to complete it. Usually, the teacher will give very specific instructions that help you know what to expect, but you can always use some extra help in structuring the learning for your child.

How to write an opinion essay

First, talk to your child about their opinion. It might be easier for them to talk about it to you than to express that opinion in words. So have a discussion about the topic assigned and ask your child things like how does it make them feel, what would they do differently, do they agree, are they interested in getting involved in managing the situation, or do they think something else would work better?

It’s also beneficial to discuss opposing viewpoints, because you will be presenting more than one in writing this paper. Here’s the basic structure you need to follow:

  • Paragraph 1: Introduction—state the topic and your opinion

  • Paragraph 2: Perspective #1 with reasons and examples

  • Paragraph 3: Perspective #2 with reasons and examples

  • Paragraph 4: Perspective #3 with reasons and examples

  • Paragraph 5: Opposing perspective with reasons and examples

  • Final paragraph: Conclude and summarize your opinion

Tips for writing opinion essays

It’s often helpful to take that discussion session with your child and turn it into a page full of notes on various perspectives. If you jot down a few words explaining each idea he or she brings up, then you can remember and incorporate them into the assignment later. Help your child to dig deeper and think of the reasons behind decisions. This can help provide continuity and smooth transitions between paragraphs because everything is properly joined within the breadth of the topic you’re writing on.

Make sure not to write this for your son or daughter. In grade four, he or she is probably not a good writer, but it’s the practice and expression of opinion that matters. Children have a unique voice and their own way of saying their thoughts, even if it’s in a graceless or amateurish way. The teacher won’t be expecting a lot of quality with the writing, but clarity in the opinions and ideas expressed.