Essay topic: "Toys are a waste of money."Brainstorming arguments for and/or against this statement.

Expert Answers
clairewait eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As you get started in the pre-writing and brainstorming step of writing this essay, it will be important for you to define some of the terms of the above statement.  First, you should probably define "toys," as there are many different categories and kinds.  For example, I'm not sure you could effectively make the argument that all toys are are a waste of money or that no toys are a waste of money.  Second, you might also want to define what constitutes a "waste of money."  Money, by itself, has a different value for every person.  Ten dollars to one family is cheap, while to someone else, is expensive.  Does that make sense?

As you brainstorm several different (and very specific) ideas, consider grouping similar ideas into categories.  I suggest coming up with different categories of toys, those that are a waste of money and those that are not.  I also suggest defining "waste of money" by adding the element of time into the equation.  One way to do this is to consider perhaps how long it takes to earn the money spent versus how much time the child will actually make use of the toy.

Keeping the above ideas in mind, use the following arguments to help you get started, but continue to add to this list:

Arguments against the above statement:

  • "Play" is an important part of child development.  Toys can enhance developmental play.
  • Educational toys help children develop in different ways.

Arguments in favor of the above statement:

  • Some toys take away from education time and encourage mindlessness or "non-thinking."
  • Some children have so many toys that many are never (or rarely) played with.

One final piece of advice before you begin writing this essay is to choose either the "for" side or the "against" side completely, rather than trying to write an essay that sits on the fence and highlights both sides.  Essays arguing for two sides often end up lacking overall focus and are therefore weaker than an essay that simply chooses one side and argues for it completely.

The links below might also contain information that could be useful in this essay.  Good luck.