Persuasive Writing: Introduction

Contributor: Delaine Thomas. Lesson ID: 12320

What will it take to get you to work on this series on Persuasive Writing? What if we told you it would make you a great writer and help you convince others your way is right? This lesson proves it!



English / Language Arts
learning style
personality style
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!


A student writes a letter to the principal explaining that a longer recess would help students learn better.

  • What type of writing is this?

It's not necessarily hopeless writing if you follow these steps!

Persuasive writing is a form of writing in which the writer uses words to convince the reader to agree with the writer’s opinion on an issue.

The writer will try to persuade the reader to take a course of action on some point. Persuasive writing is one of the most common forms of writing. You see it all around you even though you may not recognize it.

Take out a piece of paper and pencil. As you watch Persuasive Writing, from kk rheingans, write down the three types of appeals a writer may use:

You may not have realized that advertisements you see on television or billboards are a form of persuasive writing. The writers of these advertisements are trying to appeal to you to buy their product. They may try to appeal to your logical side by giving you lots of facts about how their product is better than someone else’s. They may also appeal to your emotions or try to convince you that buying their product is the "right" thing to do. All of these examples are using persuasive writing.

  • Have you ever tried to persuade someone to do something that perhaps they didn’t want to do?

Tell your teacher or parent about the time you did this.

  • Can you think of a reason that you might write a persuasive letter to someone?

Share with your teacher several examples.

At the beginning of the lesson, you saw a picture of some kids playing at recess. One of them wrote a letter to the principal trying to persuade him or her to give a longer amount of time for recess. Their claim was that a longer recess would help the children learn better.

They would need to back up this claim with some type of research in order to convince the principal that it is a fact. They would need to appeal to the logical side of the principal.

When writing a persuasive piece, you would start out with your claim, or the opinion you want someone to agree with. You would then write several supporting pieces of evidence to persuade the person to agree with you. You would wrap it all up by trying to get the person to believe your claim or to take action.

Many authors will use a counterpoint argument -- an argument for the opposite side. For example, they would say, "Longer recess is not needed for students to learn better." They then show how this argument is not a correct way to think, in order to show that they have considered both sides of the argument in their research.

Persuasive writers appeal to your logical side by giving you facts and expert opinions -- this appeals to your intelligence. They appeal to your emotional side by trying to make you get upset about how something or someone is being treated unfairly. They appeal to your moral side by trying to get you to see that it is the "right" thing to do.

Before you continue, discuss the answers to the questions that follow with your teacher or parent:

  1. What is persuasive writing?
  2. What is the first thing you write in persuasive writing?
  3. What is a counterpoint argument?
  4. What three things do persuasive writers use to appeal to you?

After you discuss the questions, you may go on to the Got It? section, where you will review a short persuasive piece of writing.

Elephango's Philosophy

We help prepare learners for a future that cannot yet be defined. They must be ready for change, willing to learn and able to think critically. Elephango is designed to create lifelong learners who are ready for that rapidly changing future.