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What Is an Observation Essay?

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  • Written By: Troy Holmes
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 07 November 2016
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An observation essay is a paper written after watching a person, group, or event. This essay is typically written in the first person as an account of historical events witnessed by the writer. It provides a detailed descriptive account of an event or activity and should include a detailed account of theme, mood, and scenery. The length of this essay varies, but is typically 1,500 or more words.

Observation essays have been used throughout history in many types of literature. These are stories that provide a first-hand account of an event. Many journalists use the observation essay format to report daily news events. This provides the reader with a descriptive account of the scene, which makes the story come to life.

An observation essay should be written in the present tense. It should provide details of feelings felt by the writer while he observed the event. These human experiences make the essay more understandable and realistic.

The opening paragraph of an observation essay should set the scene, theme, and mood for the paper. This paragraph should define the what, where, and when for the story. It is the opportunity to entice the reader with enchanting scenery and actions that grab the reader’s attention.

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A critical theater review is an example of an observation essay based on a movie, show, or a theatrical play. This review is designed to inform the reader on the quality of play and characteristics of the show. This type of essay is designed to paint a picture of the general atmosphere and experiences felt by the crowd during the show.

A story that is written with the voice of a narrator is an example of an observation essay. In this type of first-person writing, the reader becomes the spectator of the story, watching the events unfold while he reads each word. This makes the story more compelling to read because it is based on events that were witnessed by the author.

An observation essay should including clear, descriptive language. The story should include details about what the writer felt while he was watching the event. This typically includes descriptions on the weather, smells, temperature, and colors found in each scene. No detail is too small in a observation essay because it makes the story more lifelike.

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