GT Writing Task 2 / Essay Sample # 70
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Present a written argument or case to an educated reader with no specialist knowledge of the following topic.
In many countries, children are engaged in some kind of paid work. Some people regard this as completely wrong, while others consider it as valuable work experience, important for learning and taking responsibility.
What are your opinions on this?
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
Write at least 250 words.
Model Answer 1: [Mixed Opinion]
Children’s involvement in some sort of paid job has been a highly controversial issue across various countries. I accord with the statement that such an early engagement in a job inflicts serious harm on youngsters’ development in certain fashions, yet I cannot deny that they could drive some benefits from early work experience if the work environment is favourable for them and they do it besides their studies.
To commence with, child labour poses a serious threat to some extent, especially in third-world countries where children work instead of going to school. In those countries, many children are forced to undertake gruelling work such as mining, construction, agriculture and fishing to name but a few. Not only do they carry out hazardous activities but also work under harsh conditions, like being exposed to poisonous chemicals for example. Consequently, there is a fair chance that children may succumb to deadly diseases as they are susceptible to diseases. Children working in agriculture, for instance, are frequently exposed to pesticides, which results in respiratory problems. Besides, once such poor kids start earning money, chances are they will never return to school and hence their work experience has little value in their education.
I, however, personally support the notion that children should expose to some job activities, which pave the way for acquiring hands-on experiences to facilitate their personal development. But parents and the government must ensure that the environment in which these kids works are safe and good for them. Practical work experience provides children with a golden opportunity to hone their skills such as teamwork, problem-solving skills, communication skills and so on. A case in point is the recent study which reveals that many employers value soft skills and important social skills more than the theoretical knowledge of an academic discipline. Besides, these children can also master the skills of financial management, like budgeting, spending, and saving for instance, which will prove to be important for the rest of their life.
To conclude, while in many cases, children are at risk of serious harm from their workplace, I would argue that many activities open up ample opportunities for gaining crucial skills, which give them a competitive advantage. Therefore, children ought to engage in some work in good working condition that provides them with useful experience.
Model Answer 2: [Child labour is completely wrong.]
In many parts of the world, children are engaged in some form of paid work, which has sparked a debate among people regarding the morality and the value of such practices. In my opinion, child labour is entirely wrong, and no amount of work experience can justify the exploitation of young children.
Firstly, children should not be subjected to any form of economic activity that may hinder their physical and mental development. Child labour denies children their basic right to education, health, and playtime. In many cases, children are forced to work in hazardous conditions that expose them to potential injuries and health problems. Moreover, children who are employed are often paid meagre wages, which can lead to the perpetuation of poverty cycles. I believe, in such cases, child labour should be prohibited, and the government must provide support and opportunities for families to improve their living conditions.
Secondly, it is essential to recognize that child labour is illegal in many countries, and therefore, any attempts to justify it as valuable work experience are unfounded. The International Labor Organization defines child labour as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential, and their dignity, and is harmful to their physical and mental development. Therefore, children should not be forced to work to learn how to take responsibility.
In conclusion, child labour is a deplorable practice that should be eradicated worldwide. Instead of exploiting children for economic gain, we should invest in their education and overall well-being to ensure that they grow up to be responsible and productive members of society.