Writing prompts are designed to get students interested in a specific topic while encouraging them to write about it in a thoughtful, imaginative way. Creative writing and journaling are ideal for helping students express their feelings, clarify their ideas, and more. It’s no secret that writing and other communication skills are important for ongoing success in students of all ages. Incorporating creative writing into the classroom can help teachers improve learning outcomes with fun, imaginative assignments.
Benefits of Creative Writing
There are many benefits to incorporating creative writing into your lesson plans, from boosting student creativity to improving grammar, spelling, and syntax. The following are just a few of the reasons that creative writing improves student outcomes, according to Scientific Learning.
Creative Writing Improves Student Communication Skills
The most critical benefit of creative writing is that it helps students develop stronger written communication skills. In addition, discussing their writing improves oral communication as well. No matter the age or grade level, getting more comfortable with self-expression and relating their thoughts through writing are important skills.
Writing Prompts Help Students Remember What They Learn
Tasking your students with writing about the day’s lesson is an ideal way to boost retention while giving them time to synthesize what they’ve learned. It also helps with the long-term recall of key information.
Creative Writing Makes It Easier for Teachers to Assess Student Learning
Writing gives students the chance to demonstrate new skills and concepts. Journaling and other writing prompts also “help teachers see what material students have mastered and where there may be gaps,” Scientific Learning explains.
Writing Encourages Creativity and Exploration
Creative writing requires students to use their imaginations to problem solve and tell stories, as well as explore new vocabulary and writing styles. It’s a good idea to combine creative prompts with more straightforward assignments designed to test student knowledge.
Creative Writing Prompts
The possibilities are almost endless when it comes to creating writing prompts for your students. Of course, the topics you choose will depend on your students’ grade level and writing ability. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Would you want to visit the moon? Why or why not?
- What is your favorite room in your home and why?
- Describe one time when you were brave.
- If it rained food, what would you want the forecast to look like?
- Give advice to a new student.
- What would you do if you saw someone being bullied?
- Write about your earliest memory.
- Which season is your favorite and why?
- What makes a best friend?
- Which character from a book would you most like to meet and why?
- If you could go back in time anywhere and anytime, where/when would you go and why?
- What is your favorite hobby? Why do you enjoy it?
- Have you ever wished you were either older or younger? What do you think are the benefits? The drawbacks?
- What is the best book you’ve ever read? How would you convince someone you know to try reading it?
Incorporating Writing Prompts in Your Classroom
One of the best things about writing prompts is that they can easily be incorporated into the classroom day, without requiring many additional resources or special equipment. For example, you can task students with a short writing assignment first thing in the morning to start their day. This helps students focus and prepare for learning.
Another way to incorporate writing into your lesson plans is by developing assignments that require students to work together. Writing workshops and partner writing help students develop their ideas and writing skills with the support of their classmates. Finally, you can use writing prompts during transition or “reset” times after lunch and recess. Five- or 10-minute freewrites are ideal for slowing down the day and refocusing the class, according to Classroom Tested Resources.
There are a few considerations to keep in mind when developing creative writing activities for your students. Be sure you have clear assessment criteria so that students understand your expectations, and match writing prompts to your students’ age and ability. You should also mix creative prompts with reflective writing to help students develop different skill sets and prevent boredom.