Creative writing is an integral part of the English Curriculum. It’s a chance for your child to let their imagination run wild, but writing a good story, poem, or another piece of creative writing is more than just writing down their ideas on a piece of paper and handing it in.
In the beginning, you’re always told, “Write what you know.” It’s good advice. When you write new stories, use settings, characters, background, and language that you already know to make them come to life. Creating stories is like using research you’ve already done, so it’s like this—because of graders. Your background is just as important as anyone else’s, don’t forget. Reading a wide range of fiction and writing stories are important literacy goals for primary school.
While we think of creative writing as a world of endless ideas, our students often see a massive desert of “no idea.” But when you teach creative writing well, you’ll see that each student is full of ideas that can’t stay in their heads any longer.
Felicity Stone Toronto has been a great writer and a professional teacher for over 25 years. Her work has been published in leading publications like National Post, Toronto Star, and others. Thus, feel free to learn from her.
Here are the four tips to help your students develop creative writing skills.
1. Inspire and Be Original with Your Prompts
Use the following formats to make questions that will get students excited.
- Imagining scenarios that would be fun.
- Questions that are based on a text that you know. These are great for giving students who have a hard time getting started.
- Start with interesting sentence images or thought-provoking with a command.
As a great writer, Felicity Stone Toronto uses these techniques to teach her students to inspire and motivate them and make them good writers.
2. Warm Up for Writing
Freewriting is a great way to warm up. Give students 5–10 minutes to “dump” all of their ideas for a prompt on the page without thinking about structure, spelling, or grammar, so they don’t have to write them down in any way. After about five minutes, you’ll start to see them getting into the rhythm. They’ll better understand what captures their interest when it’s call time.
3. Make Rough Drafts
Your students are now ready to start making words. They’ve warmed up and had a plan in place. People should remember what a draft is before they start writing.
- A project in progress
It’s a time to take some risks with writing and get messy. The best way to help this happen is to show them how the writing process works.
4. Share Drafts to Get Peer Feedback
Don’t make yourself work on 30 drafts at once. Peer assessment is a great way to ensure everyone gets the required feedback. Additionally, it’s also less tiring. Students will get more ideas about improving their work by looking at what they have done. Frame peer feedback so that it’s constructive. Students should write down two things their friend did well and one thing they should work on more. This way, they’ll learn how to write particular comments so that you can get something more appropriate.