"Writing an essay is homework."
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I don't think that answer my question. If I say "an essay is homework" or maybe more naturally "I have an essay for homework", the assumption would be that my homework is to write an essay. I don't need to specify "writing" in English, either.
I know that the OP is a native speaker and I would like to know if it just sounds awkward (like the English does as well), or if it is wrong. I assume that this sentence is teaching how to turn verbs into nouns, so the whole point of adding 書く is to show us that [dictionary form + の] is like our English gerund. If the sentence is a little awkward, I think it's okay, but if it's something a Japanese person would never say, then I think it's worth changing.
Looking it up on Weblio gives me hits for 作文を書く, so it doesn't appear to be wrong: https://ejje.weblio.jp/content/%E4%BD%9C%E6%96%87%E3%82%92%E6%9B%B8%E3%81%8F
文章 is an essay or composition or writing in more general case.
作文 is an academic essay (or composition or writing), like a task/test/homework in schools or universities.
I think they should accept both. Or at least let them specify that this is a school essayin the english part. It's a bit confusing without some explanation.
changed my mind after some thoughts
UPD. Detailed distinction https://japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/59266/detailed-distinction-and-relationship-between-%E6%96%87-%E6%96%87%E6%9B%B8-%E6%96%87%E7%AB%A0-%E6%9C%AC%E6%9B%B8-%E6%9C%AC%E6%96%87-%E4%BD%9C%E6%96%87-%E6%96%87%E5%AD%97-%E4%BD%9C%E6%88%90-%E8%A1%A8%E8%A8%98-and-pos
This is the feel I get from it—correctish/incorrect?
- は—I'm talking about essays in general and how it's a pain, not a fun project, to write them. I have to write an essay for this college application. Just what I need, more homework!
- が—I'm talking about essays within the larger context of, say, class. I'm just back from class, and for homework we have to write an essay.
The English translation is strange. A teacher would say, "You must write an essay for homework" or "Tonight's homework is to write an essay."
The student might then say, "My homework is writing an essay/to write an essay." IDK, any thoughts?
I could understand: "Writing an essay is HARD work."
I understand your point, but I think understanding improves by using natural language translations, even if it is hard to get right the first time. This middle line is hard to walk and causes a lot of confusion in this course. JackRussian is right. No one would say this in a normal conversation.