Saturday, June 18, 2016

Story Prompts that Work by Carly Berg

Genre: Writing
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

This is a book of 52 writing prompts that can be used in a variety of ways. Some of them can be used for any age, while some are for the more mature audience.  I am going to talk about a couple of my favorites and how I, as a teacher, will use them with my students.

Prompt #3 – Unreliable Narrator  will work well in my classroom. We talk about unreliable narrators when we read a story about a dog who has been sold and really does not understand the true reason why he has been purchased. The situation of an unreliable narrator can make for a very humorous story as the students find out. I feel that I can help them better understand this by having them write a story with an unreliable narrator.

Prompt #6 – Choose a Story #1, #36, and #49  Is a great idea.  You have a first line, then choose a line from Setting, Main Character, and Situation.  The ones listed here may be a bit much for my middle school students but this is a wonderful idea and a wonderful way for me to come up with some writing prompts for them.

Prompt #18 – Twisted Fairy Tale #1 and #46  is something I do with the last unit I teach each year. We talk about fairy tales, fables, myths, legends and other traditional stories. They are required to take the story and tell it from another point of view, change the setting and time period. So they may take the story for Red Riding Hood and tell it from the Wolf’s perspective. It could be set in New York City in present time.

Prompt #19 – Objects  is one I will twist a little. Instead of going around the house and grabbing six objects that will become a list of words in a story. I would take objects and put them in a bag and have students pick from the bag to get their list of words.  This would be especially fun if we are studying a specific genre, for example ‘mysteries’ and they have to write a mystery story using those objects in their story.

Prompt #24 – A Picture is one I use every year. I find a variety of pictures and put them on my board and students may choose one or more to write about.

There are a lot of fun writing prompts here that can be done straight from the book, or you can put your own twist on them. One thing I really liked was that the author wrote example stories so you could get a better idea of what she was talking about. I can foresee this as creating hours and hours of fun writing.

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