Classwork Essay Titles

I’m just cleaning out my classroom, so I’m going to plonk this exercise here for future reference, rather than saving a piece of paper that will end up in the bottom of a box of other random pieces of paper!

Write a response to ONE of the following. You have 1hr 10mins.

1. Write an article (serious and/or humorous) for your school magazine titled “10 ways to survive secondary school”


2. Write a sensational news report or your school website describing your debs – who was there! what they wore! who got drunk! who got kissed! who got dumped!


3. Write a news article giving advice (serious and/or lighthearted) to tourists visiting Ireland for the first time.

Here are some essay titles I gave my Leaving Certs in the run up to the exams:

1. Write a descriptive essay on the wonder and innocence of childhood.

2. Write a short story in which something funny happens.

3. Write a speech discussing the idea that, in schools, appearances often mask a disturbing reality. This speech will be delivered in front of the Minister for Education.

4. Write an article for a popular magazine examining some of the unanswerable questions we spend our lives pondering.

5. Write a personal essay discussing your philosophy of life and examining how this effects your behaviour and your relationships.

Here are a few more I’ve just found

1. Write a speech for International Women’s Day. You may take a serious and/or humorous approach

2. Write a descriptive essay on the beauty and the ugliness of our world.

3. Write a short story in which a small moment has a deep significance for the main character.

4. Write a personal essay in which you explore the people, the places and the experiences that have shaped you into the person you are today.

This lot below were topics for a TY public speaking competition:

  1. Irish women have yet to achieve equality
  2. Ireland does not need Europe to succeed as a nation
  3. Our greatest asset in Ireland is our education system
  4. Future generations will be furious at our indifference to protecting the environment
  5. As a nation and as individuals we must prioritise our mental health
  6. Our lack of digital literacy education in schools is a foolish and dangerous oversight
  7. In the modern world there is no such thing as a ‘generation gap’ between young and old

Yet more – all discovered over the course of two days as I clean out my classroom and dump random bits of paper scrawled with essay topics, homework exercises, class tests…

This list is from a TY public speaking class:

  1. Write out the speech you deliver at your sister / brother’s wedding or hen/stag
  2. Write the eulogy for a loved ones funeral
  3. Write a speech where you nominate someone for an award
  4. Propose some changes in the way your school is run at a student council meeting
  5. Prepare a lesson to teach first year students for a class – any subject, any topic!

Here are some debate topics I gave at some random date in the past…

Argue for or against one of the following motions:

  • Ireland should lower the voting age
  • School attendance should be voluntary
  • Parents should be punished for their childrens’ mistakes
  • TV talent shows are destroying the music industry
  • Beauty pageants do more harm than good
  • Doctor-assisted suicide should be legalised
  • Celebrities should not be role models

Every time I think I’ve come upon the last random selection of essay titles, I find more!

  1. Write a light-hearted speech about your pet hates in life
  2. Write a newspaper article in which you uncover and expose a scandal
  3. Write an entertaining descriptive essay for a competition under the title “If I ran this school”
  4. Write a debate speech in which you argue for or against the motion that “the future of publishing is digital”
  5. Write a personal essay entitled “I’m weird but that’s OK”



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