Does writing a narrative essay feel difficult?

Sponge Bob looking at his writing to see how he has done so far. He only has written the word the.

Here's a solution! Create an outline to plan your essay. It will keep you organized and make the rest of the writing process flow more quickly! A cat wearing pants and a shirt is typing quickly on a MacBook laptop.

What is a Narrative Essay?

A narrative essay:

📙 tells a story (a true story or made up)

😇 includes a moral or lesson learned

☝️ is usually told in first person point of view (I, me, my, we)

🎆 uses vivid details

🏛 follows a narrative story structure


Pick the titles that could be narrative essays. You may pick more than one.

Narrative Story Structure

Did you fill out plot diagram worksheets in elementary school reading class?

A plot diagram showing the parts of a narrative.

All of the parts you used to diagram will be included in your narrative essay!

⭐️ Exposition: The beginning of the story. The characters and setting are introduced.

😬 Conflict: The problem or challenge in the story.

↗️ Rising Action: A series of events that build up the climax.

‼️ Climax: The point of greatest suspense in the story.

⏬ Falling Action: The events that wrap up the story.

🎀 Resolution: How the story ends.

That time you spent in elementary school reading stories will support you now!

A child reading a book while animated images of pain brushes and musical notes fly out of the book.

Writing Your Narrative Essay Outline

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The INTRODUCTION sets your reader up for the story.

⭐️ Plan to:

  • Grab your reader's attention with a good hook.

  • Include a thesis statement that states your moral.

Check out this Byte: 3 steps to writing an effective essay introduction

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The BODY includes all of the narrative elements from the plot diagram and is at least three paragraphs in length.

⭐️ Plan to:

  • Introduce the setting, characters, and conflict.

  • Tell the story events in order, leading to the climax.

  • Share the resolution of the story.

Flaticon Icon The CONCLUSION wraps up the narrative essay for your reader.

⭐️ Plan to:

  • Remind the reader of the moral or message of the story.

  • Explain how the lesson can relate to others.

Which is the strongest hook for a narrative essay?

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Things will not go well if you ask your younger sister to cut your hair. I found that out the hard way.

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Once upon a time, I got a haircut from my sister.

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Did you know that most kids get their first haircut around age 2?


Choose the strongest hook for a narrative essay:

Example Narrative Essay Outline


  • Hook: "You're not old enough yet!" How many times did you hear that when you were a kid?

  • Moral or message: Don't be in a rush to grow up.

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Body Paragraph 1:

  • Setting: My cousin's driveway.

  • Characters: Me, my cousins, my brother, my mom and dad, aunts and uncles.

  • Conflict: I really wanted to ride my cousin's bike with hand brakes, but I didn't know how to use hand brakes yet.

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Body Paragraph 2:

  • Event 1: I spot the bike with no one on it and climb on.

  • Event 2: The bike starts to roll backwards.

  • Event 3: I try to brake, but the pedals just spin backwards.

  • Event 4 (Climax): Go down my cousin's driveway backwards, faster and faster, headed for the street.

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Body Paragraph 3:

  • Story resolution: I go backwards down the entire driveway, across the street, and land in the pile of garbage bags on the curb across the street.

Flaticon Icon CONCLUSION

  • Reminder of moral or message: Don't rush to grow up — you might not be ready yet.

  • Application to others: Make sure you are ready when you try something new.

Take Action

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Get to writing!


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