5 ideas for teaching creative writing

10 Jun 2020 | News & Advice, Primary

Teaching creative writing to kids can be one of the most rewarding parts of teaching the English curriculum. But with so many statutory requirements to hit in a portfolio of writing, it can be difficult to capture truly creative writing as well as instil enthusiasm for the art.

Some of your class will really enjoy creative writing from scratch. For others, this will be a daunting experience. We have gathered together 5 simple ideas for teaching creative writing to help you and you pupils smash writing tasks.


Use a workshop-style environment

Separate your class into groups or tables, each group will then be able to choose what they work on. Some may look to write fiction pieces and use ideas around storytelling. Another group could focus on word games, spelling and puzzle-solving. There could even just be a group for reading stories and learning the craft!


All children are able to work in groups, but each pupil will each have one-to-one time with you too. As long as assignments and tasks are rotated, children will find their favourite part and be more engaged as a result. Working this way can also lead to competitions and collaborative creative writing work.


Show your class how it’s done

The adage is ‘practise what you preach’. When it comes to creative writing, this means you should be showing the class what the process is. Doing live creative writing sessions for your class can give them perspective on how to build a story effectively. More importantly, it gives them chance to see how it’s OK to make mistakes, how to take criticism and that they shouldn’t be afraid to create whatever they feel they want to. You could even get your more able (and confident!) pupils to live write on the board for the class to gather inspiration from; pupil modelling can be a really fantastic assessment for learning activity.


Give your pupils freedom

There will be a lot of children in your class who thrive when given the freedom to write. Always remember to set aside time for your pupils to have an open-ended opportunity to write, allowing them to express their favourite topics. If it’s too open for some children, then proposing a particular topic for this time can help too.


Use story-starters and prompts

Story-starters or prompts are great for getting the creative juices flowing. It helps pupils to avoid the dreaded ‘writer’s block’. We’ve also stumbled across a brilliant website where you can spin the reel to come up with story ideas!


Get the children to take creative writing home

The home environment will be a more comfortable or possibly, a more inspiring place for children to write their stories. Encouraging parents to get onside with this can sometimes be a battle, but one worth fighting. Sharing their stories and creations across different audiences is a valuable experience for children, whether that be in class, at home or safely online.

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