Creative Writing Unit Plan High School
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Short Story Writing (Grades 6-8) Use this lesson to assign a short story writing activity as well as to illustrate the critical steps of short story composition, including plot elements, brainstorming, and more.
I could usually get students to write about something that really happened, while it was more challenging to get them to make something up from scratch.
In the “real” world of writers, though, the main thing that separates memoir from fiction is labeling: A writer might base a novel heavily on personal experiences, but write it all in third person and change the names of characters to protect the identities of people in real life.
The line between fact and fiction has always been really, really blurry, but the common thread running through all of it is good storytelling.
With that in mind, the process for teaching narrative writing can be exactly the same for writing personal narratives or short stories; it’s the same skill set.
When teaching narrative writing, many teachers separate personal narratives from short stories.
In my own classroom, I tended to avoid having my students write short stories because personal narratives were more accessible.
Before I get into these steps, I should note that there is no one right way to teach narrative writing, and plenty of accomplished teachers are doing it differently and getting great results. But when they actually have to put words on paper, they forget their storytelling abilities: They can’t think of a topic. They gather at lockers to talk about that thing that happened over the weekend.
Students will get a chance to use their imaginations in this lesson where social studies and writing combine.
Have your students explore the writing process by imagining the life of a seashell.
We can change a law, inspire a movement, make people care fiercely about things they’d never given a passing thought. If we’re going to talk about how to teach students to write stories, we should start by thinking about . I’m going to share the process I used for teaching narrative writing.
But when we study storytelling with our students, we forget all that. When my students asked why we read novels and stories, and why we wrote personal narratives and fiction, my defense was pretty lame: I probably said something about the importance of having a shared body of knowledge, or about the enjoyment of losing yourself in a book, or about the benefits of having writing skills in general. I didn’t bother to tell them that the ability to tell a captivating story is one of the things that makes human beings extraordinary. If we can pass that on to our students, then we will be going beyond a school assignment; we will be doing something transcendent. I used this process with middle school students, but it would work with most age groups.