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Inspiring Creative Writing

by Kim Jaworski, Homeschool Resource Specialist

Getting kids to write can be like pulling teeth. Here are a few ideas that might inspire them to put words on a page.

  1. Start small-   Don’t jump in with a 500 word essay. Maybe a book review, or a review of a favorite movie. Check out some online reviews of similar types to get ideas about what a review should include.

  2. Or try a synopsis. When we watched a documentary on Netflix, I had the boys write a half page synopsis. They had to write the title of the documentary, 4 or 5 sentences explaining what it was all about, and then list 3 things they learned that they hadn’t known before. (No copying the Netflix blip for their description).

  3. Then try the sequel or spinoff idea. Take a book, movie or TV show that your child knows well. See if they can come up with a sequel idea (the further adventures of…) for the next book, movie or episode. Or try to conceive of a spinoff. Which supporting character could be pulled out and have their own book, movie or tv show? Where would it be set? What characters can you come up with to be the new supporting roles? These sequel or spinoff exercises are more fun than starting from scratch because your children already have the backstory and developed characters that they know well.

  4. A variation on this would be to explore what would happen if your child was added to the cast of characters. What role would the child want? What adventures would ensue?

  5. You can also have your child dream up adventures for a cast of characters from real life. Imagine yourself, and friends or cousins in a story similar to a favorite book or movie plot. What might happen? Being familiar with the personalities helps generate the story and the imagination takes flight.

  6. The next step can be a completely from scratch story or other writing project. And you never know. Those sequel or spinoff ideas could actually go somewhere. It worked for Frasier!

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