Every day of the school year, we publish a fresh Student Opinion question. Below are all the questions we asked during the school year available here as a PDFdivided into two categories — those that easily lend themselves to classroom debate and persuasive writing, and those that are more suitable for creative, personal or reflective writing.
Each question is based on content from The New York Times, and all are still open to comment by students 13 and older. Each linked Times article is also accessible without a digital subscription. Teachers tell us they use these questions to help students practice writing persuasively; as inspiration for lessons; as jumping-off points for class discussions and debates; or just to encourage student engagement with current events and with other young people from around the world.
For even more ideas on how to use this feature in your classroom, check out our free, on-demand webinar that explores how to use our thousands of writing prompts for everyday low-stakes writing practice across the curriculum.
401 Prompts for Argumentative Writing
Are Youth Sports Too Competitive? Should Celebrities Weigh In on Politics? How Important Is Correct Spelling? Is Horse Racing Ethical? Should the U. Get Rid of the Electoral College? Ban Military-Style Semiautomatic Weapons? Should We Abolish the Death Penalty? Should All Children Be Vaccinated?
Do Kids Need Recess? Should College Athletes Be Paid? Should Schools Teach Mindfulness?
Should Everyone Go to College? What Are Your Thoughts on the R. Kelly Documentary and Allegations? Should Marijuana Be Legal? Is It O. Do You Like School? How Do You Apologize?Sign up for our free weekly newsletter and get five new Student Opinion questions delivered to you every week. So scroll through the prompts below that touch on every aspect of contemporary life — from politics to sports, culture, education and technology — and see which ones most inspire you to take a stand.
Each question comes from our daily Student Opinion feature, and each provides links to free Times resources for finding more information.
What issues do you care about most? A look at e-sports, the fast-growing, lucrative world of professional competitive video gaming. Police, Prisons and Justice System. Morality and Personal Responsibility. This is an awesome list! Is there a way to print it as a PDF like some of the other lists you have posted? Liza B, Thank you for your comment. We can try to get a PDF of the list on the website next week some time. So stop by again by the end of the week. I am going to present them to the members of my future workshops for especially women and girls.
Please do share a PDF list — that would be so helpful. Thank you. We will try to publish a PDF by the end of next week. Please stay tuned. I was wondering, is it too late to update the list? I think a good topic would be environmental problems. For example, global warming, or tourism on the Galapagos islands. Great list.What issues do you care most about? What topics do you find yourself discussing passionately, whether online, at the dinner table, in the classroom or with your friends? But with so many possibilities, where does one even begin?
Try our student writing prompts. Inwe compiled a list of argumentative writing promptsall drawn from our daily Student Opinion column. Each prompt links to a free Times article as well as additional subquestions that can help you think more deeply about it. You might use this list to inspire your own writing and to find links to reliable resources about the issues that intrigue you.
So scroll through the list below with questions on everything from sports and mental health to dating and video games and see which ones inspire you to take a stand. Please note: Many of these prompts are still open to comment by students 13 and up. Is School a Place for Self-Expression?
Should All Schools Teach Cursive? Do Kids Need Recess? Is the College Admissions Process Fair? Should Everyone Go to College? Should College Be Free? Should Fraternities Be Abolished? Is Student Debt Worth It? Is Struggle Essential to Happiness? Should Schools Teach Mindfulness? Should All Children Be Vaccinated? Should the Boy Scouts Be Coed? Should Graffiti Be Protected?
Is Hollywood Becoming More Diverse? Should College Athletes Be Paid? Are Youth Sports Too Competitive? Should Technology in Sports Be Limited? Should Extinct Animals Be Resurrected? If So, Which Ones? Are Emotional-Support Animals a Scam? Is Animal Testing Ever Justified? Is Childhood Today Over-Supervised? When Do You Become an Adult? Is It O. Should the Voting Age Be Lowered to 16? Does the U.Sign up for our free weekly newsletter and get five new Student Opinion questions delivered to you every week.
What issues do you care most about? What topics do you find yourself discussing most passionately, whether online, at the dinner table, in the classroom or with your friends? Our annual Student Editorial Contest invites you to write an evidence-based persuasive piece on an issue that matters to you. To help jump-start your brainstorming, we have gathered a list of writing prompts from our daily Student Opinion feature that invite you to take a stand.
We hope the range inspires you, and we hope the fact that each question links to at least one related Times article gives you a starting point for finding evidence. For more information, here are links to our spring editorial-writing contesta list of winners from that contest and a related lesson plan on argumentative writing. Personal Character and Morality Questions. So i was thinking about doing a topic of Nuclear War for school and i am not able to take and find it on here does anyone know were i can find it?
Take the question about life existing other than on earth. The only argument that should convince anyone that life exists other than on earth would use definitive scientific evidence.
Where are the questions regarding transgender teens or adults? Where are the questions regarding sexuality?
Where are the questions regarding whether or not gender roles have an impact on teens? Hi Tasha, We have touched on all of these issues on the blog numerous times, but for this collection of questions, we only highlighted those asked in a way that most naturally led to argumentative writing. But, for example, we have a whole collection on teaching about LGBT issues here, and we ask questions and run lesson plans around aspects of teenage sexuality regularly.
For instance, just off the top of my head, hereherehereherehere, herehere and here. You are not the only one. They are perfect, however, the images we view of these women and men are They use a tremendous amount of photoshop to create a look they could not even achieve themselves. Yes, looking at these images have an outcome of someone staring unhappily in the mirror, not seeing perfect skin and chiseled abs.
Looking at perfect people in pictures for hours and then looking at yourself, you seem to come across every blemish and fault that the models in the pictures did not have. Having the idea that you could never look as flawless as the unreal people in magazines does have the power to lower your self-esteem. You do not really know how bad you feel about your looks until you see teeth as bright as the sun, the perfect coke bottle shape, and the flawless sun kissed skin in your favorite magazine.
Photoshopped images make you look and feel better, but then again it portrays an unrealistic person that is hardly yourself. Everyone has flaws and with this photoshop madness, the flaws are erased. With no flaws in these images there is no limit to how far someone will go to get that level of perfection, even though that level is unachievable because a great deal of lightening, smoothing, and shrinking has been added to the image.
The more photoshop is being used to clear up insecurities; the more it is just adding to ours. If you see before and after photos, you will realize that people in the photoshopped images are not as perfect as they claim to be. And we should not feel bad about ourselves because of this, but we do.
Seeing how a size 10 model can be photoshopped down to a size 1 is ridiculous. How can wrinkles vanish inconspicuously, uneven skin tones be evened out, dark circles erased, and stretch marks blurred?Welcome to our fifth writing unit of the school year. Below you will find a detailed description of each element, which you can customize to make your own unit.
To learn more, visit our writing curriculum overview. Thanks to the work of people like Malala Yousafzai and Greta Thunberg, the Parkland students and the teenagers in the streets of Hong Kong, the power young people can wield when they stand up for a cause is clear. And the fact that many members of Gen Z, the most ethnically and racially diverse generation the United States has ever seen, will vote for the first time this year, makes those voices even more critical.
Our student writing prompt forums encourage them to weigh in on current events and issues daily, while our Student Editorial Contest has offered an annual outlet since for formalizing those opinions into evidence-based essays. Here is what this unit offers, but we would love to hear from both teachers and students if there is more we could include.
Let us know in the comments, or by writing to LNFeedback nytimes. How young is too young to use social media? Should students get mental health days off from school? These are the kinds of questions we ask every day on our site.
In we published a list of Prompts for Argumentative Writing. Teachers tell us their students love looking at these lists, both to inspire their own writing and to find links to reliable sources about the issues that intrigue them.
In fact, every year we get many contest submissions that grow directly out of these questions. Several, like this onehave even gone on to win. And, if your students respond to our most recent prompts by posting comments on our site, they can also practice making arguments for an authentic audience of fellow students from around the world.
Each week we choose our favorites to honor in our Current Events Conversation column. Analyzing the use of rhetorical strategies like ethos, pathos and logos.
But have you thought about using the work of our previous Student Editorial Contest winners as mentor texts too? See what he has to say about the writing challenges he faced in a recent column and how he did the kinds of things students will have to do, too, from fact-checking to fixing grammar errors to balancing storytelling with making a larger point.Argument Planning 1
Inan English teacher in Connecticut wrote for our site about how he does this exercise, in which his students choose from among columnists at The Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal.
On our current site, you can find the essays of the top winners and the runners-up from, and What lessons might it have for your writing? You can register now for our Feb. Kristof, as well as from Kabby Hong, a Wisconsin English teacher who works with this contest annually, and his student, Daina Kalnina, whose essay was one of our top winners that year.Update, Sept. Update, Feb. Now, seven years later, and in honor of the Oct.
Consider it an update of a previous post, and a companion to the list of argumentative writing prompts we published in Below, a list that touches on everything from sports to travel, education, gender roles, video games, fashion, family, pop culture, social media and more.
Like all our Student Opinion questionseach links to a related Times article and includes a series of follow-up questions. All questions published since May are still open to comment by any student 13 or older. So dive into this admittedly overwhelming list and pick the questions that most inspire you to tell an interesting story, describe a memorable event, observe the details in your world, imagine a possibility, or reflect on who you are and what you believe.
What Challenges Have You Overcome? When Have You Failed? What Are You Afraid Of? What Are Your Fears and Phobias? What Are Your Personal Superstitions? Do You Like Being Alone? How Often Do You Cry? How Do You Relieve Stress?
What Is Your Personal Credo? What Motivates You? What Makes You Happy? What Are You Good At? Are You Hard or Easy on Yourself? How Full Is Your Glass?
How Productive and Organized Are You? Are You a Good Listener? How Competitive Are You? How Emotionally Intelligent Are You? How Much of a Daredevil Are You? How Impulsive Are You? Are You a Novelty-Seeker? What Annoys You? Do You Apologize Too Much? Do You Have Good Manners?
How Materialistic Are You? Are You a Saver or a Tosser? Are You a Hoarder or a Minimalist? Are You an Introvert or an Extrovert? Are You Popular, Quirky or Conformist?
Are You a Nerd or a Geek? Who Is Your Role Model?Sign up for our free Feb. And, we have new argumentative writing prompts to add to this list.
So scroll through the hundreds of prompts below that touch on every aspect of contemporary life — from social media to sports, politics, gender issues and school — and see which ones most inspire you to take a stand. Each question comes from our daily Student Opinion feature, and each provides links to free Times resources for finding more information.
And for even more in-depth student discussions on pressing issues like immigrationgunsclimate change and raceplease visit our fall Civil Conversation Challenge. Tell us in the comments. And visit our related list as well: Prompts for Narrative and Personal Writing. Social Media and Smartphones. Has Facebook Lost Its Edge? Does Punctuation in Text Messages Matter? Technology in Schools and the Future. Can Cellphones Be Educational Tools? Do Machines Represent a Threat to Humans?
Is It O. Should Sports Be Coed? Is It Harder Being a Girl?
130 New Prompts for Argumentative Writing
Are Women Better at Compromising and Collaborating? Can a Boy Wear a Skirt to School? Is Dating a Thing of the Past? How Big of a Problem Is Sexting? Is Cheerleading a Sport?
Should Cheerleading Be an Olympic Sport?
181 Prompts to Inspire Writing and Discussion
Has Baseball Lost Its Cool? Player Came Out as Gay? TV, Movies and Video Games. Is TV Too White? What Makes a Good Commercial? How Sexist Is the Gaming World? Music, Literature and Art. Do We Still Need Libraries? What Is a Hero?
Should Parents Bribe Their Children? Is Modern Culture Ruining Childhood? When Do You Become an Adult? Is Prom Worth It?