One of our tasks at English lessons is to write compositions. But my essays are not impressive enough. My teacher says my vocab. is so poor, and the structures I use are too simple. Moreover, I think I don't know how to give examples or facts. Are these all that make my essays less impressive? Please read one of my compositions and give out your comments, or corrections.


There is a saying " Health is Wealth", which means Health is of great importance to everyone. Noone can live, can work without a good health. That is why how can we stay healthy is more or less difficult to answer, though there are many ways to stay healthy.

First of all, playing sports and doing regular exercise do one's health good. By taking part in such activities as jogging, running, swimming, or football can a person develop his muscles effectively. What is more, it is advisable to take regular other kinds of exercise at home or at fitness centers to make one's body fitter and allow it struggle against diseases, thus leads to probable work of the defend system of the body.

Additionally, if one wants to keep fit, he should choose a suitable diet for himself. This should consist of many kinds of vegetables and fishes but less meat, sault, sugar, chilli or food containing cholestorel.

Finally, arranging time to work and play suitably is essential for anyone to have a good health. After a hard day's work, one should spend time on leisure activities like fishing, reading, or going sightseeing. Especially, he should never put himself under stress.

In conclusion, these are only some of my opinions for anyone to keep fit, but useful. However, it also depends on the matter of interest.
I don’t know, I wish I could!

I like the way you started your essay “Health is Wealth” But it sort of finishes there really, I was expecting more, more links between health and wealth but you went on to say that playing sport improves health. I think you could have continued from your excellent start adding a bit about why wealth is important to the sports aspect, you could have said something like sport is more available in wealthy cultures because people have more free time. The same applies to the diet aspect; you could have shown that because we are a wealthy nation we have the ability to provide ourselves with a good diet. (This is a very dodgy subject to get into, because of our wealth; some of us are eating a very poor diet).

I think you would have done better if you had first drawn up a list of things related to health. A search of the internet and would have produced more I’m sure.

Off the top of my head:-
Like you said: - Exercise, Diet

Also: - Knowledge, keeping clean, education.

Avoid higher risk issues like:-
Unprotected Sex

There must be loads more of related issues.

Now, if you added something about all those aspects of keeping healthy your essay would just become a list, and not really an essay.

However one or two of the aspects listed should attract your interest; you will probably have more information about one or two than the rest. If you don’t, then research that aspect which is of MOST interest to you, and build your essay around that.

What you’re trying to do is write a piece of text that is interesting for someone else to read. If you wanted to cover the HOW TO STAY HEALTHY topic properly, then you could probably write a book, or several books, but you’ve been asked to write an essay, so what you are really being asked is to look at this topic, HOW TO STAY HEALTHY pick out an aspect of it that is of interest to you, write about it so that it grabs the reader’s attention and becomes of interest to them.

What they want to read, is you, they want to see you in the text, they want to hear you in the text, they want your ideas, it doesn’t matter if your ideas are wrong, we are all entitled to an opinion and that’s what people want, they want you to shine out of your essay. Then your Essay will be impressive!
Thank you for your useful advice, Uncle Gizmo. I've never been able to be so thoughtful like you are, indeed. I know that my essay is of bad quality and doen't attract readers, but I don't know how to express my ideas about a particular issue, eventhough I have thought about it. When I read your advice above, I imagine what I'll have to do in the next essay, yet, when I write one, I'm sure I'll forget all what I've been told. I find writing essays in English very difficult. It's not like our own Vietnamese literature.

Is my vocab. too poor? Though I've learned a lot of useful structures as well as new words in English, I can't apply them to my writing. I think a wide range of words also contributes to the impression of one's essays, doesn't it?

If you can, please give me a topic for me to practise right in this forum!!!!
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try finding new words from the dictionary everyday, and use in ur daily life...hope it helps!
The point of learning a language is to communicate and you seem to have communicated quite well your feelings about writing these essays. You expressed feeling in the paragraph before your essay and in response to one of the comments. I didn't get the feeling that your grammar is too simple or that your vocabulary was poor. You got your point across well, and that is all that matters.

Now as far as your essay, I felt that you were just stating facts and not the emotions behind them that would make me care about being healthy. If you were to simply tell me something like...'avoid cholesterol', then i probably wouldn't pay attention. However, if you said..."You should avoid cholesterol as much as possible because it begins to clog your arteries and over time can lead to serious heart conditions and potentially kill you if left unchecked," then I would probably be more apt to pay attention. Also you could say, " You better lay off the fried chicken or your arteries are going to get clogged faster than the toilet in the women's restroom!" Emotion: rofl

If you want to spice up your writing, go focus on some adverbs and new adjectives. Those will be like putting barbecue sauce on your nouns and verbs, and your writing will be delicious!

If it helps, think of how you would describe what you're wanting to say in your native language and then make a list as you look up the English equivalents. Make it a point to use your new words in your writing and it will stick with you the more you use them..
I think you need to put some references to proof what you are saying, so that people will believe what you wrote. Seeing your words, "English is your secondary language or first language?". It seems like you're still learning English. Your style of words is too rigid. And you need to explain more about the topic you are sharing. Your style of words are also seems to force people to believe your words. You need to put some statements, and references, and make sure your essays are not too little in amount of word counts. As your teacher said about vocabulary, you need to improve more, because vocabulary is very important. When someone read your essays and found some vocabulary that is not familiar, maybe they will try to search it or even use it for their references ( In aspect of reader ). But, if it is in the teacher perspective, what that will they see in your essay is your grammar, vocabulary, knowledge, and style of words and paragraphs.
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Hey, thanks a lot everyone! I posted this thread 8 years ago and have been receiving comments... really appreciate that Emotion: big smile

Guess my English has improved quite a bit since the last time, given that I am currently working in an English-speaking-country.. However, learning will never stop Emotion: smile

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