The Connecticut standardized test (the CAPT) asks students to read a short story and then answer the question, "Is this an effective piece of literature?" To help students understand how to respond to this question, I created this sample essay using the story of "Cinderella." In this 2 page sample essay, I argue that the story is an ineffective piece of literature because
the characters are flat and one-dimensional, the plot is poorly structured, the story is excessively predictable, and the theme is difficult to understand. Because the question, "What is great literature?" is often an essential question in English literature classrooms, this sample essay could likely work well in a wide variety of English literature classes.