GED Practice Essay: Revising the Conclusion

Okay! I’m on the final step of revising my practice GED essay. That’s the conclusion. I think a good conclusion is really important on the GED. The GED readers look for organization, and a good conclusion shows good organization. The GED readers are also people…and people like a good conclusion. It leaves you with a good impression, since it’s the last thing you read.

Here’s the conclusion I wrote in my draft for the GED practice question:

Because of my own bad reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It teached me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

Like the other paragraphs, I’m going to go over this looking at the same things a GED reader looks for. Here are the questions:

1. Did I answer the GED question and stay on topic?

The conclusion really shows your main point, so it has to go back to the GED test question. The original practice question was:

Sometimes, we don’t know in advance how we’ll react to a new situation.

Describe a time when you were faced with a new or difficult situation and explain your reaction. Do you wish you’d acted differently? Why or why not? Use your personal observations, experience, and knowledge to support your essay.

Well, I described the situation and my reaction in the first few paragraphs of the essay. And in the conclusion, I say that I wish I’d acted differently and why…by saying what I learned and how I’d like to act different in the future. That’s answering the question… and that’s what I want to do on the GED!

2. Is my writing organized?

In my conclusion, I tell what I learned from what happened. That makes a good ending, because it ties everything together, but it also tells something new. It’s not just repeating things, which is bad writing anywhere, including the GED. I don’t want to be boring… I want to be as interesting as I can. Maybe it’s not the most interesting story in the world, but at least I don’t have to just repeat myself… I think it’s organized, but if you have any suggestions, let me know.

3. Did I give enough good details?

The GED readers like to see details… not just generalizations. Most of the details go in the middle of the essay, but did I get any details in this last paragraph? I guess it’s a detail that I almost missed my son’s wedding. That was a big deal to me, too.

Because of my own bad reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It teached me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

But I think I give a lot of details earlier in the essay, and the conclusion is more about telling what I learned than details, so I think it’s okay for details. The important thing is that it gives new information…and it does say specifically what I could have done different… “stopping and listening to my son.” That’s not too general, is it?

4. Are there language mistakes, like spelling and grammar?

This is another big deal for the GED, and it’s a hard one. Spelling and grammar mistakes always get by me when I’m writing. This is one place where revising can pay off when you take your GED. I see a problem… I say “teached.” I don’t know why, sometimes it slips out that way. I know it’s wrong…it should be “taught.” If you pay attention to what kinds of things you get wrong a lot, they’re easier to spot and fix.

Because of my own bad reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It teached taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

Hmmmm… I also say “my own” right near there. That’s pretty redundant. It’s better just to say “my,” unless there’s a real reason to say “my own.” I’d better change it.

Because of my own bad reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

I don’t really see too much else in this paragraph… if you see anything, let me know.

5. Did I choose the best words to say what I mean?

Choosing good words is also important. That means, building up your vocabulary for the GED! The more words you know, the easier it will be to think of a better word. Let me see…I use the word “bad”… “bad reaction.” I need to get away from that word, because it’s too simplistic! I mean, I want to express myself better, and that means using words with more complicated meanings. “Bad” is a generic word. What’s a better word? Why was it bad? Because I didn’t stop to think. What’s a word that means bad because you don’t stop to think? “knee-jerk”? I kind of like that.

Because of my bad knee-jerk reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

Can I think of a better word for “so” when I say “so sure I was right”? Something that’s got more feeling? What about instead of “so sure” I say “completely convinced”? Or, even better “stubbornly convinced.” That goes back to emphasize again how much of a donkey I was being!

Because of my knee-jerk reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was so sure stubbornly convinced I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier.

What other word could I improve? How about “happier”? Happy is a pretty generic word. Is there a better one? What would have our lives had to make them happy? Peace instead of fighting, I guess. And love instead of being like strangers! Why don’t I say “peaceful and loving.”

Because of my knee-jerk reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was stubbornly convinced I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives happier peaceful and loving.

Well, I think that’s the end of writing this GED essay, and the whole process from beginning to end. Here’s the whole final practice essay:

The unhappiest time in my life was when I didn’t talk to my son for a year. I reacted atrociously to my son’s engagement. I was furious and didn’t want him to get married. His engagement was surprising and shocking to me, and I wish I had reacted different.

My son came over one day for dinner, and he brought a girl I never met before. He didn’t even tell me he was bringing anyone. Then he told me they were getting married. I was terribly upset! I thought he was too young. When he saw I wasn’t happy, my son got extremely angry at me, and we had a fight.

Because of my narrow-minded attitude, my son wouldn’t talk to me unless I accepted him getting married. I grew more stubborn because I thought he was making a big mistake. Finally, though, his wedding date came up. I was sad that I might miss his wedding, and I called him. It was hard for him to trust me, after how angry and stubborn I was, but we both wanted to get along. I spent some time getting to know the girl he was engaged to by having dinner with her and taking her shopping, and I figured out that I liked her. I was able to go to their wedding, and now, I love my extended family.

Because of my knee-jerk reaction to being surprised, I almost missed my son’s wedding and missed out on having a new daughter-in-law who I love. It taught me that I need to think before I react and not let my feelings get in the way of what’s important. I really wasn’t looking at things from my son’s point of view, because I was stubbornly convinced I was right. By stopping and listening to my son, I could have made all of our lives peaceful and loving.

I bet I could still make it better. The more time you have left on the GED, the more changes you can make to improve your essay. You can go in and choose better words and find errors…and that will give you a higher score. Good luck on the GED! Hope this practice essay helps!

To find out more about the GED test and GED test preparation, visit The GED Academy at passGED.com.

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