Writing is my passion and I believe in using quality writing prompts for kids or daily writing prompts. I can sit and write for hours on end, if I’m left alone and there are many children for whom writing is their love, too.
While your children are out of school, for an indefinite period of time or their school will be closed for the rest of the school year, for some states like Kansas schools and California schools, I want to help to make sure that their writing skills are being maintained over the next few weeks or months. Are you one of those families who chose to homeschool or are faced with distance learning this school year? Well, this fantasy writing prompts for kids will come in handy.
I also want to make sure that those students who love writing are receiving opportunities to write with guidance and support as best as possible. Using or providing writing prompts for kids or daily writing prompts is one way of doing this.
Before I jump into writing prompts for kids, one thing I would highly recommend is using some type of explicit grammar and writing instruction. It could come from your child’s teacher or from an online learning resource.
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The one that I love and use with my K-5th grade students is Noredink . It is separated into grade levels and topics, allowing students to get support in the exact skill they need it in. Another reason I love Noredink is you can assign writing prompts for kids and the program will also score it for you.
Outside of instruction and skill/topic practice, students need to be writing. They need daily writing practice to continue to build on their writing skills. Daily writing prompts are one way of ensuring that kids continue to make progress as writers. As anyone who cares or knows about writing will tell you. You become a better writer by writing.
If your child or students are anything like mine, many of them don’t like to write, so you have to make writing as appealing as possible. Normally, they are more open to fantasy or fiction writing prompts and are a bit more reluctant with non-fiction writing prompts.
To help with their reluctance or lack of confidence, regardless of the genre of writing we’re working on, I normally read from a mentor text to them first. A mentor text is a book that does an excellent job using whatever skill that is being worked on or studied in writing.
Mentor texts are helpful because they give children a clear idea of what good writing, using that skill or skills, should be like, so they can tell when they’ve met the mark.
For example when working on adding or using descriptive details, I read All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan. In this book, the main character describes the childhood farm where he grew up and reveals that he has many different places that he loves because each place is important to different people and moments in her life. Here is a collection of the best mentor texts to teach narrative writing if you have a child who loves to write and would like to learn more about narrative writing.
My students love when the mentor text that I have chosen was written by me, because they get to learn more about my life, but they also love it even more when I select a mentor text that was written by a fellow student. A few weeks ago as we worked on persuasive writing, I selected two essays that were completed by students and used it to model or show others how they had met or exceeded expectations.
Some of our other favorites authors we love for mentor texts include Mo Willems, Eve Bunting and Patricia Polacco. Mo Willems is also an illustrator and is hosting free tutorials in drawing. If your budding author is also a budding artist, you should let them participate.
I am providing a lot of suggestions for narrative writing because it is a student favorite and is the main genre we focus on in lower elementary grades. Once students have a good foundation in narrative writing, it is usually easier for them to move on to completing informative, persuasive or opinion writing.
Below, I have created several daily writing prompts that are a combination of fiction writing prompts, fantasy writing prompts, writing prompts for 2nd, 3rd, 5th grade, really writing prompts for kids. Maybe I should back up a little more and explain before giving you the list of writing prompts for kids.
What are Writing Prompts for Elementary School?
Writing prompts are story starters, ideas or suggestions that guide students into identifying or choosing what they should write about. Writing prompts for kids and daily writing prompts provide opportunities to practice grammar skills in a more relevant way.
Elementary students may get a daily writing prompt at the beginning of the day as they settle in for class, during reading and writing instruction or at the end of the day as a journal writing activity. No matter when it happens in the day, teachers try to provide time for students to be engaged in writing and daily writing prompts are a great help.
What are Good Writing Prompts?
Now, that you understand what a writing prompt is, let’s talk about good writing prompts. Good writing prompts work for the majority of students. It gives ideas, but also allows students to be individuals and share their own personality and interests. It is not the “write about your summer vacation” prompts that many of us wrote during our time at school.
Good writing prompts engage student’s imagination or require them to conduct some research or additional thought before they can complete the writing prompt.
Since you now understand what writing prompts for kids are now and their importance. Here is a collection of writing prompts for kids that can be used to keep students engaged in writing during their time out of traditional school or just in general. Have a budding writer? Have them work on the challenge writing prompts or come up with their own writing prompts.
Writing Prompts for Kids (Short Stories) in K-2nd Grade
1. Your stuffed animal has come to life for a day. What adventures do you go on together? 2. Create a story about what you wish you were doing with your family while you're home from school. 3. What animal do you know the most about? Draw a picture and share all that you know about that animal.
4. Your classmate needs a new book to read. What is your favorite book? Tell them all about your favorite book and why they should read it. 5. Make an alphabet book about your favorite things. Add a page for each letter. Draw a picture and write a sentence or two for each letter. For example: A is for Atlanta. I went to the zoo with my family in Atlanta.
Writing Prompts for Kids (Short Stories) in 3rd-8th Grade
6. Find a scar on your body or think of a time when you got hurt. Tell the story of how you got hurt and how that scar came to be. Use as many interesting details and ideas as you can remember.
7. "The humans are acting strange."
" Yeah, no cars are leaving for work. It’s eerie."
As you sit up in your bed this morning, you realize you're listening to two birds sitting outside your window talking. Write the rest of the story.
8. Write a detailed letter to your teacher/s telling what you miss the most and the least about school. What would make this time at home perfect? Describe your perfect combination of being at home and also attending school. Use descriptive details.
9. You’ve discovered an island and everything is strange. Write a story that tells us about this island and your experience there.
10. What are you an expert in? Cooking, Pokemon, Baseball, Chess, Gymnastics, Horseback Riding or Robotics. Write a how to report teaching a friend everything they need to know about your area of expertise.
11. Stumbling through the pitch dark woods, I wondered when I'd learn my lesson. A wolf howled in the distance making me start to move quicker.
Either finish this story from this point or tell who this character is and how they got to this point.
12. Write a mini book of jokes to share or your funniest story to cheer people up.
13. Create a daily journal that keeps track of each day that you've been out of school.
14. A new superhero is needed to help the world. Create one (you can add drawings as well) and then make a comic or short story about his/her origin and how they help the world.
15. Research more about your favorite historical time period and write a story about a character that lived during that time.
16. Select a book whose ending you didn’t like and rewrite it to have a better ending.
17. Pick two characters from two of your favorite books (different books). Write a new story with both these characters.
Writing Prompts for Kids in 9th Grade and Beyond
18. Many graduations and proms have been canceled due to concerns with safety. Do you think these should be canceled or rescheduled? Give strong, valid reasons for your opinion. 19. Write a poem about your thoughts and feelings at this time. 20. All sporting events have been cancelled. Write a story that shows what you think would've happened in your favorite sport this year. For example: who would've made it to the final 4 in College basketball and who would've won it all. 21. Your friends are bored right now. Write giving them options of things to do to stay sane. What should they watch on Netflix, should they make Tik Tok videos, or what video games should they play ? 22. Life has been uprooted around the world. Create detailed journal entries, for each day you're out of school, to share with people in other countries what your experience is like.
Challenge Writing Prompts for Kids (who are more experienced writers)
23. Many of you love reading the Who Was books about famous people like Dr. Seuss, Rosa Parks and many others.
Write a Who Was book about you or someone else of your choice. It would be an excellent idea to write about someone in your family, too. Interview or research about the person you have selected, so your book is filled with great facts and details.
24. Your favorite author has a book that is supposed to be released in a few months. There's one problem, they have amnesia and don't remember what they planned to write or even that they’re an author. Write their next book for them, staying true to the main characters and picking up where the last book left off, if possible, or writing another book that their fans would enjoy. Ideas for series to continue are Dork Diaries, Wings of Fire, Swindle, Harry Potter, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Dogman, Elephant and Piggy, Pete the Cat and Pinkalicious or any other you love.
25. Select any of the prompts above and expand them to include several chapters to make it into a book.
Click the link below to download 12 free, amazing writing prompts for kids.
April Fools' Writing Prompts
26. Your mom is afraid of__________________. Write a story about an April Fools' prank you played on her with_____________________.
27. Write a story about the best April Fools' prank you have played or want to play.
28. Write a short story about how you convinced your family your house was haunted.
29. Create a short story that explains how the tradition of April Fools' day got started.
Easter Writing Prompts
30. As soon as you touched the Easter egg, you knew something was wrong. Before you could say anything, you started disappearing into thin air. Finish this story.
31. Your family has an exchange student, who has never heard of Easter, write a short informative essay that explains what Easter is and why/how it is celebrated.
32. Describe your favorite Easter tradition in your family and tell us about your best Easter memory.
Christmas Writing Prompts
33. “Wake up, wake up, Mom and Dad, it’s Christmas."
I decided not to wait anymore for those two slow pokes and took off down the stairs. When I got to the living room, where our Christmas tree, decorations and all our presents should have been, I saw…
34. It’s the battle royal everyone has been waiting for: The epic battle of Santa versus the Grinch. Tell us the story of the problem that has happened between these two epic Christmas characters and what happens when they meet to settle things once and for all.
35. Research and write a report about one of the symbols of the Christmas season. In your research, find out where the idea for the symbol came from, who invented or created it and how it has changed over time. Some suggestions for symbols you could research are stars, ornaments, wreaths, Christmas trees, Christmas gifts, candy canes, Christmas stockings, and candles.
36. On the last day before Christmas break, your teacher wants to do a movie and pajamas day. Write her a letter persuading her about the Christmas or holiday movie you think the class should watch. Use details from the movie to convince him/her.
37. Draw a picture of and tell the story about your favorite Christmas memory.
38. If you had an endless supply of money, what gift would you buy for your classmates and/or school? Use drawings and specific details to tell about this amazing gift you would purchase. Don’t forget to share how it could be used and why students or your school would love it.
39. Elves on shelves are notorious for playing epic pranks and causing trouble. Pretend that you have become an elf for a day and tell the story of the epic prank you would pull.
40. A new villain is about to trap you in a Christmas snow globe. You cannot escape your fate, but you can design the Christmas snow globe you will be trapped in. Use descriptive words and details to share the snow globe you would design. Add an illustration to go with your description.
Valentine’s Day Writing Prompts
41. Valentine’s Day is thought to have come about because of the kind actions of a priest or priest by the name Valentine. Create your own story that explains how Valentine’s Day came to be.
42. Think of the person or people you love the most. Write a Valentine’s Day story/book dedicated to them. Be sure to include specific reasons you love them or memories you’ve shared.
43. Some research says that Valentine’s Day came from a leftover tradition from a festival in Ancient Rome. Write a letter to your city leaders proposing your ideas for a current day Valentine’s Day festival. Include details about food, games and any other activities you think should be included.
44. A famous greeting card company is having a competition for the best Valentine’s Day Card poem. Create a Valentine’s Day poem to submit and then explain why your poem should be selected.
45. Valentine’s Day symbols include hearts, flowers, cupid, birds and candy. Create a new or suggest an unused symbol, which already exists, that should be used in Valentine’s Day celebrations. Write a detailed explanation of why your symbol should be used.
46. It’s Valentine’s Day, but everyone is doing the opposite of what they would normally do. Write a story explaining what is happening on this opposite Valentine’s Day.
Writing Prompts for Struggling Writers
47. Your favorite celebrity has shown up for your birthday. Who has shown up and how do you celebrate?
48. He seemed friendly enough. He just walked right up to me as I was playing in my yard and started wagging his tail. Finish writing this short story.
49. Write a short story about your favorite animal.
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Need more ideas to challenge and support your students or children? Check out fun Children's Book Week ideas, a new review game called Blooket, my post on the best online educational resources, personalized nonfiction practice, games and activities on Martin Luther King and my information on how to start a chess club or in your case, how to teach chess to your child at home, if you happen to have a board at home. I will post follow-ups on how to teach chess. Looking for short stories to read?
If your child or children want an entertaining read, or if you do, check out my I am an Island Girl series about what life was like as a child in Jamaica. Laugh while learning more about Jamaican culture. Does your child enjoy project based learning and research, then this unique black history lesson is perfect for them.
Do you have younger children? Check out my posts providing tips and ideas for preschoolers that develop skills like scientific inquiry, basic language and number skills, unique at home activities and get suggestions for some of the best books on love.
Looking for help with common teacher issues? Then, how to be the best teacher, how to improve your classroom with flexible seating or the best ideas for book character costume day or week or spirit week may be just what you need. Need a pick me up or tips to get back to "winning" as a teacher? I have that too.
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