Writing can be really tough, especially for kids who are new to writing or have difficulties with writing.
So many ideas, so many words to choose from, so many spelling and grammar rules to follow. It can leave kids feeling like this:
One great way to help kids practice and improve their writing skills is the use of writing prompts!
Whether you're a tutor or teacher, offering appropriate writing prompts for kids will give them some needed guidance when putting pencil to paper.
A writing prompt presents a question/topic that guides a student on what to write.
It gives writers something specific to write about, which helps create a focus point for broad or complex topics.
Imagine you're tasked with writing about clouds.
Well...what about them?
How do you begin writing about clouds? How do you know if you're supposed to give your own opinion or do research?
Imagine how tough it must be for kids who already have difficulties writing.
This is where prompts come to the rescue!
4 Types of Prompts
The first step in creating writing prompts for kids is to determine what you want the prompt to achieve.
If you want the writer to explain the details of something, you should ensure you're using a descriptive prompt.
If you want the writer to convince you why or why not you should take a certain position on a topic, you should use a persuasive prompt.
If you're looking to have the writer tell a story, use a narrative prompt.
And finally, for having writers provide more information about a topic, use an expository prompt.
If you want a writer to describe why smoking is bad, what type of writing prompt would you choose?
Effective Writing Prompts for Kids
When designing writing prompts for kids, consider these 5 components:
It's written at their reading level.
The child should understand the prompt, but also be able to practice new skills and make progress.
It creates a clear expectation.
The child should be able to understand the purpose, length, and topic.
It is relevant to their experiences, knowledge, or interests.
To improve interest and motivation, make it about them or something they enjoy!
It provides a healthy challenge.
The prompt shouldn't lead to a simple yes or no answer.
It provides hints that guide the writer.
Providing keywords and sentence starters can help children who may have trouble writing.
You'll know that you've created an effective writing prompt when the student...
Here are some clear and simple writing prompts for kids that will inspire them to write!
In 3-5 sentences, tell me about your most recent vacation.
Describe the taste, smell, and texture of your favourite food.
What is your favourite sport? Why should it be my favourite sport too?
Describe how to make a bowl of cereal in 3-5 steps.
At the end of the day, writing takes practice! Writing prompts are a great way to help children who struggle with writing skills practice and improve.
Here are some more ways to prepare effective writing prompts for kids: