The most important things to learn
Some people argue that schools should focus on academic performance of students rather than their practical skills like dressing or cooking. From my perspective, I completely disagree with this statement.
On the one hand, it is true to say that academic knowledge plays a pivotal role in schools. This is because academic performance directly influences the scores that students achieve in the exams which are an important factor when they apply for a job after graduation. Furthermore, without fundamental understandings, students can hardly succeed and progress in their domains in the future. However, I believe that placing excessive emphasis on academic learning can also be detrimental since not all students want or are able to pursue a career of a mathematician or a historian. Therefore, focusing attention on academic knowledge can be a waste of time and effort for those who desire to work in non-academic fields such as cooking or fashion.
On the other hand, there are several reasons why schools need to teach practical life skills. Firstly, those skills are indispensable for people who want to become independent and self-reliant. For example, when college students live far from their families, knowing how to cook enables them to prepare the meals by themselves without having to dine out. Secondly, students who have acquired practical skills and been able to complete self-care tasks are likely to become more confident and possess a sense of responsibility. Finally, attending skill building classes can also be seen as an hobby which helps students to unwind after spending many hours on theoretical subjects.
In conclusion, I hold the view that while test-taking expertise is important, students also need to learn practical life skills such as cooking, cleaning or dressing in order to be capable of taking care of themselves.
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Since you did not provide the original prompt and there are several essays that fall under this topic, I'll just make a general review of your work. Let me just say this, the best scoring essays are always the ones that use the first person point of view (when allowed by the prompt) to offer an insight and / or experience as a part of the discussion presentation. In the second paragraph, the stronger of the two presentations was the one where you said "I believe that placing excessive..."
Remember, the paragraphs should only contain 1 topic sentence so that you can focus on the clarity and validity of your reason. The personal statement would have been the better scoring of the two because it shows and understanding of the topic and an ability to clearly explain yourself based on personal considerations. I do not advise that you present more than 2 connected reasons per paragraph. It is the reason that an essay loses focused responses and clarity in the explanation. In this case, you went off track several times because you focused on reasons instead of explanations.
Please provide the prompt next time. It is important that your essay be reviewed based on the prompt requirements. Without it, it will be difficult to truly spot your writing errors, weakness, and points for improvement. I look forward to reading your next essay soon.