Writer's Desk Hall of Fame
The MathEnglish.com online writing program enables budding young writers and test takers to work with the best graders in honing their writing ability. Students work one-on-one with an expert grader throughout the course of 12 weeks, writing topics on stimulating, introspective, and character-building prompts.
To learn more about this incredible program for your child, click here.
Jasmine, Grade 7
The MathEnglish program has helped me a lot. I think I have improved a lot from the program. After this program, writing essays is not a pain any more for me. All the graders were really nice. Their comments on the essays really tell me what and how to write.
Since English is my second language, I initially had trouble writing essays. But ever since my mom signed me up with the writing program, I think I have improved a lot. When I have grammar mistakes, you would tell me what is wrong, and then give me a website explaining the way I am supposed to write. Personally, I think that is very helpful. I also learned how to write a better introduction and conclusion. My favorite prompts had to do with something concerning the school, and the principal wants students’ suggestion. For all of those, I wrote in letter form. I really like writing in letter form. It is something I enjoy.
I hope that you like all the essays I wrote. Doing this was really helpful to me. This will definitely help me in the future.
Juliana, Grade 8
Thank you so much for all of your help. I appreciate it.
What started out as something that took my mother weeks to convince me to do soon turned into something that I actually enjoy: writing essays. When my mother first hinted at the idea of entering Dr. Li’s essay writing program, I adamantly refused, but it was not because I actually hated writing essays. It was more that they were tedious to write and just “boring” in general. Eventually, it was the realization that essay-writing is a skill that I would use all my life, on the upcoming high school magnet tests, on the SATs, in school, and possibly even at work, that convinced me to give in and try the program. Joining the program was supposed to make my writing improve, and with interesting prompts and three graders who provided useful comments, it did.
In Dr. Li's program, there are three professional graders, each with his or her own grading style. Every time I turned in an essay, I would receive it back within 24 hours with comments from the graders as to what I needed to improve on, and what I should maintain. The relationship I had with them was on a very individual level and one-on-one, so the advice I received was specific to my writing. None of the graders were harsh in their comments, which was also part of what I was originally afraid of. I was mostly graded by Michael, the director of the writing program. He was very detailed, and often provided links to websites that related to whatever I needed help with. Jenny and Peter only graded me once each, but they also proved to have sharp eyes. The grading system in Dr. Li’s program is unique and helps the students in it increase their writing skill.
As I mentioned before, one of the reasons why I did not want to enter the program was because I thought that essay-writing was boring. However, the prompts in this program were anything but boring. The topics ranged from how I had changed since the fourth grade, to whether I thought the government should be spending more money on space exploration or not. The diversity of these prompts helped prepare me for the different types of writing I would encounter in the future. Additionally, some of these prompts are similar to those that appear on the high school magnet tests-one of them even appeared on the 2003 test. The fact that the essays are timed also helps stimulate a test environment. The prompts in Dr. Li’s program actually interested me, a
Each person has his or her own style of writing, and while this program helps change the fluency, word choice, and conciseness of one’s writing, it does not change one’s style. The graders strike a happy medium between being purely blunt and being overly nice, so that they can provide comments that actually help. The prompts were probably what made me realize that writing can be fun and interesting. Now, after being in Dr. Li’s program for four months, I can honestly say that my writing has improved, and that I truly enjoy writing essays.
Allison, Grade 5
This short essay is about how I improved during my essay program. It will be about why I enjoyed it, what I struggled with, and how I thought I improved as a writer.
I enjoyed this program because the prompts were interesting. I liked the prompt where you had to write about a favorite cartoon character coming to your house for dinner. When I read that, an idea popped into my head immediately! I also liked this essay program because we could send it to you and you can give us comments. I think that helps us develop better writing skills. But there were also some parts I struggled with.
For some of the writing prompts you gave me, I couldn’t think of what to write about, or had to choose between two really good ideas. For example, when I was doing the special item prompt, I debated against my pillow or a stuffed dog. But I think all of these prompts helped me become a better writer because they required me to think!
I learned about semicolons, where to put a main idea, how to make a good introduction that could grad people’s attention, and so on. I think I learned a lot of punctuation and typing/ writing skills during this program. I hope you enjoyed reading my essay about the essay program.
Jaejun, Grade 10
The essay program in MathEnglish has helped me greatly in ways that made me come up with creative ideas to write about, and fixed my easy grammar and spelling mistakes. It was a great experience that allowed me to become a much fluent writer although I still make many mistakes and am not completely comfortable with writing essays. The most helpful things about this program was that I was able to get judged by different graders, and the essay questions made me think for a long time.
It is not very easy to find a place where students can write essays and get them graded by various teachers. By having many graders, this program has helped me understand the types of things that SAT graders would look for in a good essay. For example, one grader had said, "You need to work on fixing awkward phrases." When I was done fixing that problem and turned in another essay, the new grader said, "You should work on your vocabulary to make the essay more fluent." These criticisms were very helpful and easy to fix thanks to the graders' specific points. The graders of MathEnglish essay program have been both criticizing but also supportive of my essays.
I did not have many occasions where I had to think for a long time to come up with examples and points to write on the essays. Unless a person has a great sense of responsibility and the will to learn, it is difficult to find essay topics and write them for him/herself. However, the MathEnglish program has forced me to write an essay every week to finish the program before the expiration date. When I could not find any reasonings to support my thought, I researched the topic online until I could find a couple of points. In short, the program allowed me to become creative and made it easier for me to find reasonings for any topic.
The MathEnglish essay program is a great program, I have had a very helpful experience because of it. I would recommend this program to anyone who has a hard time writing essays and finding people who can grade them. The program helps students in many areas, but mostly helps on writing diverse essays and coming up with intelligent reasonings to support their ideas.
Jason, Grade 9
I was always a person who was inclined more toward math and science than English and social studies. Thus, I had trouble writing essays. However, in my experience with the MathEnglish essay program, I feel that I have improved greatly as a writer. Throughout the program, I have learned how to better write essays. The MathEnglish essay program helped my writing skills because it taught me about essay structure, researching, and grammar and word use.
The essay program taught me about essay structure. In the beginning, I had trouble writing the introduction and the conclusion of my essay. I would usually write them exactly the same. My grader gave me helpful links for me to help me learn how to write those two paragraphs.
The essay program also taught me how to better write research papers. I had little background knowledge on some of the prompts that were presented to me, so I had to research on them. This helped me with my research papers that I had to write in school. Just last week, I had a research paper and I felt much more confident in writing it because of the skills I acquired from the MathEnglish program.
Another way the MathEnglish program helped me was that it helped me with grammar and word use. Before I used the program, as well as in the beginning of my essay writing, I had a lot of grammatical mistakes in my essays, and I often repeated words or used them incorrectly. For each essay, my grader would carefully revise the essay and point out even very small mistakes. After I finished all 12 essays, I really feel that my grammar and word use are much better.
Throughout my experience with the MathEnglish essay program, I have learned many important ideas that have allowed me to become a better writer. I learn about essay structure, researching, and grammar and word usage. In the future, if I need more help with essay writing, I will most likely use a MathEnglish program again.