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School Closures!? Creative writing prompts to keep young brains busy

Updated: May 13, 2020

Is it just me or have schools focused much earlier on structured essay writing and less and less on creative writing? I figured this would be a great time to get back to expressive, creative, big idea writing. Here is a list of ideas I thought was worth sharing:

Creative Writing Prompts and Projects

No focus on spelling or grammar when writing, however it should read well. You can use any of your completed writing exercises as a grammar and spelling lesson and edit.

1. Close your eyes and walk into another room or spin around (carefully). Write about the first thing your eyes fall upon using all the senses, an emotion and use an analogy or metaphor

2. Pick an emotion and find an image/episode in your memory that fits that emotion. Write a story, essay or poem. (It works best if you pick a strong emotional connection and if you can’t remember it in detail, write at the edge of what you know- be okay with guessing). You can choose many different emotions, so this might grow into a whole collection of writing (essays, poems, stories).

3. Write about a common event or practice as if you were an alien and had no prior knowledge or understanding of what is happening.

4. Write a letter to your older self. Add details about what it feels like to be you, be this age and stage and whatever you’d like to tell or hope for your older self.

5. Write a letter to your younger self. Add details about what it feels to be you, now and look back at your younger self. Add anything you want to tell, warn, and express understanding or compassion to your younger self.

6. Watch a short or part of a video you haven’t seen before with the sound off (you can also do this with people watching). Write a story about what you guess or imagine is happening. You can add a back-story or an ending- use your imagination!.

7. Write your family’s history and the story and lessons in your history: For all of these exercises add meaning (how you or your family makes sense of why this happened, what it means about you, your family, the world or other people. What it means about the past or the future or about what lessons are taught or what is important to your family and/or the people in it.

a. Make a timeline and list all the big or important to you events.

b. Use the timeline to write a narrative (story) about the events in overview.

c. Write about a particular event that is important to you in more detail.

8. Take 5-10 words from your favorite song or several words from several songs, mix them up and write a make a poem using all the words.

9. Write a poem about being irritated/Angry/bored/scared/jealous...

10. Write a poem to your most sentimental belonging.

11. Write a poem or essay about your spirit animal and how it feels to be that animal. (How do you feel a connection and kinship or how do you want to use that animal’s characteristics in your life).

12. Write a poem as if you were your pet.

Please visit for more about Kristin Little LMHC, Child Specialist services and published books supporting children and families in divorce.


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