Persuasive Mini-Essay

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Introduction
Hook (Startling fact or statistic, or “Imagine if” scenario)

Fact or Statistic: A stick of gum can keep you more alert, energized, and focused than 10 cups of coffee, and without the caffeine side effects (healthyliving.edu).

“Imagine if”: It is finals time again, and students around the country are cramming for their exams. But what if instead of reaching for that extra cup of coffee, they were able to pop in a piece of gum for extra energy?

Background Info (what the issue is)

Unfortunately, students are not allowed to chew gum at Harvest Park Middle School.

Thesis (your position on the issue)

Students should be able to chew gum in class because of the many benefits.

Reason #1 (best argument)
First, chewing gum is proven to help increase student test scores. In a 2010 study of 400 students at Harvard University, 78% of students scored higher on standardized tests when chewing gum (harvarduniversity.edu). If students were allowed to chew gum during class, it would help increase their grades and elevate the academic success of the school.

Reason #2 (second best argument)
Next, students should be allowed to chew gum because it can help support a healthy immune system. Sugarless gum kills up to 90% of harmful bacteria in the mouth. This can help stop people from getting ill (CNN.com). Thus, gum could help prevent many class absences if students are allowed to chew it and protect themselves from illness.

Counterargument (what the opposition might say & why they are wrong) Proponents of banning gum in schools may say that students do not properly throw away gum, as it ends up on the ground and under desks. However, this will not happen because if gum is allowed, students will not feel like they need to hide it. At Hart Middle School, teachers and staff members reported less gum under desks once the school got rid of their ban on gum (HartMiddleSchoolNews.edu). If gum is allowed in schools, students will throw away their gum...
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