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Creative Writing Prompts to Learn About Students

written by: Kellie Hayden • edited by: Sarah Malburg • updated: 9/11/2012

One of the best way to keep a calm classroom is to get to know the students well. One great way to do this is through creative writing assignments. Try these writing prompts to encourage writing and to learn about the students' personalities and hobbies.

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    Creative Writing to Learn about Students

    The true personalities of middle school students can be found through writing. Students are like onions; there are many layers. What is on the outside for young adult teens usually is not at all what is on the inside. In middle school many students are trying to be popular, or they are trying new things, usually trying to be somebody else. So, getting to know students can be quite difficult. Many students will "let you in" through their writing. Teachers are always surprised to learn that a quiet student plays the guitar and loves heavy metal or that the loud and obnoxious student enjoys reading historical fiction.

    Make Creative Writing a Weekly Assignment

    Creative writing can sometimes draw a collective groan from students in the classroom. Make it a weekly task so that students know the writing assignment is coming. Students don't know they like structure, but they do. They will come in on Creative Writing Tuesday and ask "What are we writing today?" once the teacher has made creative writing a weekly ritual.

    Writing Prompts to Draw Out Students' Personalities

    Try these writing prompts to find out more about the students and to get students writing:

    • If I received a full-college tuition scholarship, I would...
    • If I had one super power, it would be...
    • My favorite type of music is_________ because
    • My most shining moment was when...
    • The best movie ever was __________ because
    • When my friends are not around, I like to ...
    • If I had one wish granted, it would be...
    • When I get my driving license, I will...
    • My favorite hobby or sport is...
    • My favorite video game or Internet site is...
    • I like/don't like to text because...
    • I thought I would absolutely die when...
    • My favorite food is _________ because
    • My most important possession is _________ because...
    • If money was no object, I would decorate my bedroom like...
    • Clothing is/is not important to me because....
    • I disagree/agree with my parents about _____________ because....
    • I think that the school rule _______________ is wrong/good because....
    • Girls/boys are so silly/goofy when they do _____________ because...

    So, get students writing every week by starting with these writing prompts to create a bond with students and to encourage writing. You will be surprised to find out what is really in the center of the "onion."