I'll be taking the CLEP English Exam with Essay pretty soon, so I need to practice my essay writing. I did some review, chose a topic, and wrote this essay in half an hour. Any feedback and tips will be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
Topic: "Describe a place you go to relax and explain why and how this place is relaxing."
In this hectic life, we all need a place of rest and relaxation. We need a place where we can temporarily get away from it all. Everyone needs a place like this, and for everyone that place will be different. For me, that place of rest and relaxation is the kitchen. Let me tell you why.
First, the kitchen is a great place to unwind, because there's food there. Eating food is a very enjoyable thing, and it causes your body to release happy chemicals like dopamine and serotonin. For a brief moment, you are enraptured by the joy of food, and it causes all the stress of your life to melt away. Along with the dopamine produced directly by the food, your body also makes dopamine when you have successfully created a dish. You reached a goal, and your mind rewarded you for all your hard work.
Not only is the kitchen a great place to relax because it has food, but it's also a place of quite introspection. I usually go there, even when I'm not hungry, just to walk around and look out the window. I think. It's a place where I can let all my thoughts come together and I can sort things out.
The kitchen can also be a very social place, where everyone in the house gathers to make small talk and joke around. You feel connected with others, and it can make you realize that a lot of what you worry about, really doesn't matter. Friends and family are one of the most important things in your life.
But perhaps one the most important reason that I think the kitchen is a relaxing place, is because for me it represents a place of symbolic, spiritual cleansing. The kitchen is usually dirty, and every few days I have to clean it. When that happens, I view the event as a representation of my own inner, spiritual state. When the kitchen is out of order, my life is chaotic. When the kitchen is clean, my life has order. In cleaning the kitchen, I once again bring order into my life.
In conclusion, I believe that the kitchen is the most relaxing place I go. Everyone needs a place to relax. Where is your place?
Yes, change "Let me tell you why" to a thesis statement. Change it to a statement that tells, in a single sentence, the MAIN IDEA OF THE WHOLE ESSAY.
The thesis statement (or question) is like the essence of any essay.
Not only is the kitchen a great place to relax because it has food, but it's also a place for quiet introspection.
The conclusion paragraph needs to be more than a sentence. English teachers generally encourage students to make paragraphs consist of more than one sentence. In that last paragraph, tell the truth of the essay: the kitchen is relaxing because it satisfies the basic need for sustenance, it is a place where one can do deep thinking, and it is a place where people socialize. Sum up the essay by telling how the kitchen is unique because of these things, so that the reader feels like you wrote something very meaningful.
It's finny, good writing is a matter of saying something, explaining it, and then saying it again!
Thank you two for the feedback! I will change the end of the first paragraph to (my thesis statement):
"For me, that place of relaxation is the kitchen, because it is a place for food, friends, and thoughtful introspection.
I'll also change the conclusion and once again summarize the main ideas.
I'll practice another essay tomorrow. I'm sure it'll be an improvement.