It's not easy to get students in the mood to be creative and write, but that is what this month's protocol is all about, creativity and mindset. Often times, students will engage in an activity because it is different, and they are curious, or the teacher provides enough structure and encouragement to get them started. Either way, this blog post is here to help! Please tell me in the comments what you do to get student's creative juices flowing.
JUMPSTART CREATIVE WRITING ACTIVITIES (Writing, Reading, Discussion)
Description: Based on Barrie Davenport’s 11 Creative Writing Exercises That Will Improve Your Skills, these protocols allow students to concentrate on the content rather than the process of creative writing.
Application: These activities are best used in subjects where reading and writing are standard practices.
Process: Provide context when implementing these activities: 1. Everyone has an “inner author” ready to share experiences, knowledge, or stories, but it’s hard to get started. 2. The more one writes, the better at writing one becomes. 3. Writing should be without mind barriers like what others think of the writing or being a self-critic.
Activity 1: Answer Three Questions: Create three questions to stimulate creative thought. Direct students to answer the questions quickly and write whatever ideas pop into their minds. Example: “Who just snuck out the back window? What were they carrying? Where were they going? or Whose house is Julia leaving? Why was she there? Where is she going now? From the answers, instruct students to create a written work based on the three answered questions and the five elements of a short story: character(s), setting, plot, conflict, and resolution.
Activity 2: Write A Story Told To You: Remind students that they are retelling an event or experience from the past told to them and that the goal is to entertain, inform, and/or evaluate a situation. Provide structure: In the introductory paragraph, establish the setting and introduce the characters and the topic of the story. In paragraphs two, three, and four, relate the events in chronological order. In the final paragraph of the retold story, make an evaluative comment that provides closure to the recounted story.
Activity 3: Pretend To Be Someone Else: Tell students to write from the perspective of a person known or an imagined character. Suggest students select a setting, situation, event, or encounter that exemplifies the person by relating what he/she is thinking, seeing, hearing, and feeling about the scenario. Outline length parameters, one paragraph to one page. Example: You are the English teacher when the fire alarm goes off during a test.
Resources and for more information:
Davenport, B (2022) 11 Creative Writing Exercises To Awaken Your Inner Author
How to Write a Recount Text (And Improve your Writing Skills). www.literacyideas.com
Alison Thetford, M.Ed