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150 Inspiring Picture Writing Prompts To Spark Creativity (Free Google Slides)

Use a picture to write a thousand words!

Picture writing prompts including a cartoon cat and mouse and a portrait of a Black family from the 1930s

Creative writing is a challenge for many students, often because they can’t come up with anything to write about. That’s why we love picture writing prompts. Each one sparks the imagination and helps young writers jump right into crafting a story to match. We rounded up a whole collection of intriguing images for use with kids in grades K-12 along. Plus we designed a set of free Google Slides featuring all of the prompts so you can easily share them with students.

Tip: Start by showing students the picture (or let them choose from among several) without making any comment about what they’re seeing. For kids who still struggle to get started, suggest a potential title or opening sentence, like the examples included here.

Don’t miss our free downloadable. Grab your full set of ready-to-go Picture Writing Prompts Google Slides with all of the prompts below.

Elementary Picture Writing Prompts

Middle school picture writing prompts, high school picture writing prompts, art picture writing prompts.

When kids first see these picture writing prompts, they may or may not immediately feel inspired. If they need some help, ask them questions like “What led up to this moment?” or “What’s going to happen next?”

Dog holding a rose in its mouth, with a heart-shaped cloud in the sky

When Larry fell in love, he fell hard.

Lighted sign reading ASK hanging from a building

When the new sign appeared on Main Street, everyone in town wondered exactly what it meant.

Snowy Footprints

A series of random footprints in the snow

After that crazy day, all that was left to show for it was footprints in the snow.

Dinosaur Bones

Child hiding inside a large toothy skull, reaching out a hand

“Come with me if you want to live!” Ash said, reaching out a hand.

Undersea Treasure

Goldfish swimming around a closed treasure chest sitting in the sand under the water

For years, no one saw the locked treasure chest but the local fish, who wondered what it could contain.

A Game of Fetch

A claymation dog bringing a stick to a snowman in a snowy scene

To Scout, it was a game, but to Mr. Freezy, it was much more.

Ladybug Gossip

Of pair of spotted red ladybugs perched on a leaf

The ladybug’s picnic was an excellent chance to meet up with old friends and hear all the latest gossip.

Two children peering in through a barred window

We met them when they peeked into our window, watching us as we ate lunch and watched cartoons.

King of the Jungle

Majestic lion perched on a log wearing a crown

It wasn’t the crown that made Amari the king of all he surveyed.

The Final Pitch

Small child waiting at home base for a baseball pitch that's about to arrive

It all came down to this—the final pitch in a game that was tied 2-2.

Doggie Massage

Two dogs sitting in a way that looks like one is giving the other a back massage

Every dog in the neighborhood knew that Rocky gave the best massages and was always willing to lend an ear too.

Skateboard Life

Girl in a striped shirt and red headband posing with a skateboard in front of some graffiti

When Charli got her first skateboard, she made herself a promise.

Garden of the Past

Painting of a woman in old-fashioned clothing walking in a cottage garden

The woman walked in the garden every day, never saying a word.

Sunset Friends

Two children on a jungle gym silhouetted against a setting sun

They met on the jungle gym every day at sunset, sharing everything about their days.

Pink Umbrellas

A sunny alleyway with pink umbrellas strung across it

When the pink umbrellas first appeared, Toni thought they might be magic.

Firefly Forest

Illustration of a forest at night filled with fireflies

Olivia was surprised to discover that the fireflies didn’t just glow, they also sang.

Robot Spider

A large mechanical spider standing on a stormy beach

When it first crawled ashore, the mechanical spider moved slowly.

Fallen House

House tipped on its side following a hurricane

Staring at their house, which was now on its side, the whole family was in shock.

Red Riding Hood

A young girl wearing a red hooded cape riding a brown horse in the forest

If only she’d been riding her faithful steed the day she’d met the Big Bad Wolf, things might have been very different.

Kangaroo Fall

A kangaroo sprawled on its back in the grass

“Well, this is embarrassing,” thought Bouncer, as laughter filled the air around him.

A child's hand-drawn sign for a lost cat attached to a tree

Daci’s big brother said her signs wouldn’t help them find their runaway cat, but he was wrong.

Penguin Bookshop

An illustration of a penguin wearing a top hat, standing in a booksshop

A visit to Mr. Pickerel’s Penguin Bookshop is always an adventure.

A carton of colorful eggs with faces drawn on them

Of all the eggs in the carton, Ella was the one who could always crack you up.

Children writing a fairground swing ride

That was the year Min was finally tall enough to ride the Sky Swings, but now she wasn’t so sure.

Rubber Duck Parade

A row of rubber ducks in various costumes floating down a water-filled gutter

It was truly an honor to be asked to lead the Spring Duck Parade.

Teddy Story Time

Three teddy bears posed to look as if they're reading a book

Every afternoon, the three friends gathered for story time in their favorite spot in the woods.

Underwater School

A child sitting at a desk, looking out the window at fish swimming by

Nia thought going to school underwater would be exciting, but some days she really missed going outside for recess.

A red ball with a smiley face floating on the water

The day Amos started his journey down the river, the sun was shining brightly.

Turtle Trouble

A grumpy looking sea turtle floating in clear water

“None shall pass,” growled the old sea turtle, blocking the way.

Dinosaur Race

An illustration of a young girl racing alongside a dinosaur

Pia was supposed to keep Balthazar on a leash, but once they reached the forest, she set him free and they both began to run.

Finally Seeing Eye to Eye

Cartoon illustration of a large bear with a tiny mouse standing on its nose, looking into its eyes (Picture Writing Prompts)

“So, we meet at last, face to face,” Lord Squeakerton said to his enemy, the Count of Catnip.

Monkey face with mouth and eyes open in surprise

It takes a lot to surprise a monkey, but you don’t see something like this every day.

Not Coming Out

Child hiding behind a heap of pillows on a beige couch (Picture Writing Prompts)

The day started out normally enough, but by the end, Chris knew he was in over his head.

Life on Other Planets

A space scene showing a robot and robot dog standing on the surface of an alien planet, with a domed habitat behind them

“Hurry up,” Grnklor told his robopup. “We have to get back inside before nightfall.”

Reindeer Games

Boy leading a reindeer along a snowy path into the setting sun (Picture Writing Prompts)

The wind had died down, but the setting sun seemed to take all the warmth of the day with it.

Something to Celebrate

A young boy raises his arms in triumph as a young girl points at a computer screen, smiling (Picture Writing Prompts)

Their classmates could hear their shouts of joy from all the way down the hall.

Home Sweet Mushroom

Illustration of a mushroom turned into a house, with a fence and lighted windows, under a full moon

When the fairies that lived in the garden invited her to stay with them for awhile, Maria wasn’t sure what to expect.

Loch Ness Mystery

Model of the Loch Ness Monster rising from a lake

“There it is! I told you Nessie is real!” Angus whispered to Lee.

Lonely Bear

Worn teddy bear sitting on a stone bridge

It was hard to say who was lonelier that night, Amil or his lost stuffed bear, Jasper.

Sometimes You Lose

Boy sitting on the ground with his face in his hands

When his team lost the championship, Miguel was crushed, but it turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to him.   

Middle school writing prompts can be a little more complex, with pictures that have a lot of potential interpretations. Encourage students to delve deeper into the story by describing how the characters feel and why they behave the way they do.

A pair of light blue Converse sneakers

Morgan was incredibly proud of those shoes, paid for entirely with money from after-school jobs.

Never Lose Hope

Splotch of green paint with the words

With his last bit of energy, Kai scrawled his message in the wet paint.

Computer keyboard with a red button reading Get Me Out of Here

The keyboard button could only be used once, and no one knew exactly what happened when you pressed it.

Piano Lessons

A young child's hands on a piano keyboard

Before she could even speak, Arya was drawn to the black and white keys.

Rolled fern front photoshopped to look as if a baby is sleeping inside

There was no doubt about it, this was was indeed a very special kind of garden.

A person wearing a dingy bunny costume standing on the end of a dock

No matter how you looked at it, it had been a very rough day to be the Easter Bunny.

Empty Chairs

Four empty beach chairs on the shore, with seagulls flying overhead.

By sunset, all four chairs were empty, and the only signs of life were the gulls swooping down from above.

Floating Treasure

Two black birds sitting on a chest floating in the water

To the birds, it was simply a convenient place to land, but Ali and I knew it was much more than that.

Shadow Question

A pair of sneakers and a person's shadow in a puddle

That was the day they discovered that just because you were invisible didn’t mean your shadow was.

Letter and Key

An old key lying on an old handwritten letter

The day she turned 12, Vivi’s aunt handed her an envelope containing the family secret.

Space Target

An illustration of a woman aiming an arrow at a target against an outer space landscape

Onyx paused, knowing that once their arrow hit the target, there was no knowing what would happen.

Mermaid Mystery

A mysterious figure that could be a mermaid, seen from below

It was a mermaid—or was it?

World on a String

A girl standing on a path, holding a suitcase and a bunch of balloons that look like planets

Her dad had promised to give her the world, but she wasn’t expecting three more planets as well.

Bee Standoff

Two bees face ot face on a purple flower

“This flower ain’t big enough for the both of us!” said Bianca.

Solitary Seat

A leather chair next to an old woodstove with a valise and old books

For as long as anyone could remember, Angus McGee spent his evenings in the same chair next to the woodstove.

Best Friends

A little girl holding a very large teddy bear, dragging it down a dirt road

When you decide to run away from home forever, you can’t possibly leave your best friend behind.

Dinosaur Demise

Illustration of dinosaurs panicking as a meteor is about to hit the earth

In retrospect, setting the time machine to randomly choose a day and time in the past might not have been such a good idea.

Magic Lamps

A collection of green

“Choose wisely,” said the old shopkeeper, “for only one of these lamps is truly magic.”

Message in a Bottle

Glass bottle on a seashore with a rolled up paper inside

The message floated at sea for more than 50 years before the day we found it on the beach.

Barrel Boat

Man wearing a life jacket and paddling half a barrel in a lake

Of all the ways to impress someone, Jonah thought to himself, this had to be one of the most ridiculous.

Dragon Guardian

A child sitting in the grass, with a dragon curled up around her

When your parents give you your own dragon guardian, your childhood is bound to be enchanted.

Octopus’s Garden

Diver encountering a large octopus with fish in the background (Middle School Picture Writing Prompts)

Wouldn’t you like to be under the sea, in an octopus’s garden in the shade?

Around the Corner

Girl peering around a corner at a boy walking a dog

After finally pressing “send,” she couldn’t resist peeking around the corner to watch him read the text.

Beam Me Up!

Small child sitting in a field watching a flying saucer beam up its tricycle (Middle School Picture Writing Prompts)

Milo’s earliest memory was of watching his beloved tricycle float into the sky above him, caught in a beam of light.

Poison Apple

A red apple held in a skeleton's hand

To join the club, all Aaron had to do was creep up and snatch the apple from the skeleton’s hand without being seen.

Giraffe Council

Three giraffes shown from the neck up against a cloudy blue sku

“It is now 3 p.m., and I call this meeting of the Mighty Council of Giraffes to order,” announced Imari.

Mystery Creature

Computer illustrated creature with blue scales, pink spikes, and large eyes

At first glance, it was hard to tell whether the little creature was friend or foe.

Woman leaping across a chasm silhouetted by an orange sky

As the sky turned orange, Keisha ran faster than ever and used the last of her energy to push off and soar over the water below.

The End of Days

A boy stands with his bicycle watching as bombs rain down on a city skyline (Picture Writing Prompts)

Despite their best efforts, they arrived too late—the battle had already begun.

Out of the Book

Woman dressed in a blue ball gown peering out of a book lit from inside, with a mouse nearby

“Happily ever after” was about to take on a whole new meaning.

Stopped Clock

Old broken alarm clock stopped at 11:17

I was sure that the time on the broken clock was the clue to solving the mystery.

Dueling Webs

Two dew-covered spiderwebs in the early morning sun

It’s never a good idea to build your web too close to another spider’s, but this time I had no choice.

Do Shoes Grow on Trees?

A bare tree covered with hanging pairs of shoes against a clear blue sky

The day I threw my own shoes into the tree was the day I really started to grow up.

Abstract Art

Closeup of splotches of colorful paint

“So,” asked their art teacher, “what do you think this painting means?”

Wandering Robots

Small cardboard robot in a field of daisies (Picture Writing Prompts)

Everything about NB-317 was made of cardboard except his heart—that was made of flesh and blood and very capable of being broken.

Dream Come True

Blue house floating in the sky above mountains, held up by blue balloons

It all started when Quinn watched her favorite movie the night before they assigned partners for the eighth grade science fair project.

Mysterious Cave

Rocky cave with strange geometric patterns in the rock

The cave was unlike anything we’d ever seen before, and what was more, it almost seemed like the rock was alive.

Storm at Sea

A pirate ship on stormy seas, with a purple sky and dramatic streaks of lightning

As the rain lashed his face and lightning tore apart the sky, Kiran had to admit he’d always thought it would be a lot more fun being a pirate.

Grasshopper Close-Up

A closeup view of a grasshopper looking directly at the camera

That’s when Javed realized it wasn’t that the grasshopper was too big—it was that he was suddenly very, very small.

UFO Parking

Sign saying UFO Parking with picture of a flying saucer

“Well, that’s convenient,” Javdok remarked to Qabow when they saw the sign.   

High school writers are ready to dig deep, exploring character development and detailed plots. These pictures offer a jumping-off point to set their imaginations free.

Cyborg Girl

An altered image showing a young girl in a black dress with a white collar, with a neck made of mechanical gears

When she was 14, Tasha’s parents finally told her the truth about what she really was.

BBQ Cookout

Barbeque grill with many different kinds of meat

“So, I’m guessing no one told you I’m a vegetarian?” asked Sadie with a smile.

Hands holding up a phone with a picture of a baby's face in front an old man's face

The latest app was like a time machine, allowing people to look back in time, but it also had a dark side.

Woman sitting on a sidewalk with her head on her knees as others walk by

She was surrounded by people but never felt more alone.

Hippo Troubles

A hippo mother and baby with its mouth open

Like all parents, hippos sometimes really need a break from their kids.

iPad Farmer

Old man in overalls using an iPad while snapping green beans

Grandpa Jack never failed to surprise us.

Marching Band Blues

Black man in a red shirt sitting on a bench, wearing a sousaphone

Kaleel sat sadly on the bench, watching the rest of the band march away in jaunty time to the music.

Never-Ending Tunnel

A white-tiled tunnel stretching far into the distance

The tunnel seemed to stretch to infinity, but Jayma knew what was at the end, and it terrified her.

Carving Out Love

A birch tree with

For years, we wondered who “WP” was, and who it was who loved them so much they carved it into a tree for all to see.

Glowing Globe

Man holding a glowing globe in a misty library

Just then, the globe began to glow, and Jaxson knew he was about to leap through space and time once again—destination unknown.

See No Evil

Three skeletons posed in the classic

It seemed like a funny joke to pose the skeletons in front of old Mrs. Petoski’s house, but then she turned up dead, and the police said it was murder.

Upside Down

Woman hanging upside down from the ceiling in a kitchen

It’s an odd feeling to wake up one morning and find yourself able to walk on the ceiling.

Face at the Fence

Child with their face pressed up against a wire fence

So much depended on which side of the fence you were on.

Bicycle Race

Three people competing in a bicycle race

Finley had trained too hard for this race to come in third—it just wasn’t good enough.

Family Travels

Vintage photo of a Black family strapping luggage to a car, with a young girl posing in front

In the picture, my grandmother’s expression is hard to interpret, but she’s told me the story many times.

Laundromat Antics

A pair of legs waving out of a dryer in a laundromat

Dani never expected to meet her first love feet first.

Black and white photo of a wedding ring lying on a sheet of notepaper saying "I'm sorry!"

Molly’s mom probably didn’t mean for her to be the one to find the note, but that’s how things turned out.

Through the Storm

Pickup truck driving through flooded streets in a storm

Javier knew it would have been smarter to stay put, but he had to make sure his mom was safe before the worst of the storm arrived.

Lifetime Friends

Two babies holding hands while being held by adults

They’d been friends for as long as they could remember—even longer, in fact.

Stray Kitten

A small kitten facing a person's legs, in black and white

“I am NOT taking you home with me,” Kai told the tiny mewling kitten firmly.

Abandoned Greenhouse

Woman inside an abandoned ramshackle greenhouse in the woods

Willow was free to leave at any time, but she couldn’t make herself go.

A fence topped by rolls of razor wire against a blue sky

Amani’s earliest memory was razor wire—miles and miles of it.

Church Graveyard

An old graveyard outside a stone church

Everyone feels differently in a graveyard, but for me, they’re very peaceful places.

Orb of Death

A hooded figure folding out a crystal ball with a spooky image in it

“Do you really want to know?” Death asked. “Because once you know, you won’t be able to forget.”

Missed Shot

Men in wheelchairs playing basketball, as one laments a missed shot

Steve was sure his shot would make it, but it bounced off the rim just as the buzzer rang to end the game.

First Contact

Alien figure with a human in a spacesuit visible in the window behind them (High School Picture Writing Prompts)

This was it—the moment that would change what it meant to be human forever.

One Life To Live

An old man wearing a cowboy hat sits in front of a house (Picture Writing Prompts)

His face said his life had been a hard one, but his eyes told a different tale.

Winter Walk

Snow-covered field with a winding trail of footprints

Snow fell, creating a blank canvas to record the story of that fateful walk.

Train to Nowhere

Sepia-toned image of an old sleeper train car in disrepair

It certainly wasn’t the most luxurious way to travel, but then again, no one really wanted to make this trip in the first place.

Modern Mary Poppins

Woman standing in the middle of a wheat field on a gray day, holding an umbrella and bag

She dropped into our lives on a gray day in midwinter, a hint of the spring that was to come.

All That Remains

A chair sits in the hallway of an abandoned building under a shaft of light from above (High School Picture Writing Prompts)

Dust motes filled the air of the abandoned hallway, replacing the voices once heard there.

A very small bunny being carried in a shirt pocket

From the day he found the little creature, Luis refused to go anywhere without him.

The Question

Figure holding flowers behind its back, with a woman turning to look in the background

Their happily ever after began quietly, with a bouquet of wildflowers.

Night Lights

A person holding an umbrella walks down an alley toward a street filled with neon lights

Misty rain both blurred and emphasized the lights that lit Suri’s way home that evening.

Forest of Fear

Black and white photo of tree trunks with arms and hands reach out from behind them (Picture Writing Prompts)

At first, Mateo thought it was a joke, but the screams that followed told him there was nothing remotely funny about it.

Closeup of a human eye, with the pupil represented as a camera lens

At the elite level, being a spy meant serious commitments.

The Yellow Door

A row of white doors with one yellow door (Picture Writing Prompts)

On their 14th birthday, every resident of Fresnia was required to stand before the Wall of Doors and make a choice.

Graffiti Palace

Abandoned warehouse with graffiti on the walls

To strangers, it seemed random, but every mark on those walls had deep meaning for us.

Fossil Fish

Fish fossil in light-colored stone

Millions of years ago, the fish gave one final flop before lying still in the deep mud.

On the Rails

Woman standing on railroad tracks holding a guitar and looking off into the distant sunset (Picture Writing Prompts)

Aliyah stood on the tracks, uncertain of where to go next.

These picture prompts are all works of art, some more well known than others. Try providing them to students without sharing the titles first, then offer up the titles if they need some help getting started.

The Dance Class (Edgar Degas)

The Dance Class by Edgar Degas

Greek Funerary Plaque (520-510 BCE)

Greek Funerary Plaque

Washington Crossing the Delaware (Emanuel Leutze)

Washington Crossing the Delaware by Emanuel Leutze

Kyōsai’s Pictures of One Hundred Demons

Kyōsai’s Pictures of One Hundred Demons

First Steps, After Millet (Vincent van Gogh)

First Steps by Vincent Van Gogh

Lady Lilith (Dante Gabriel Rossetti)

Lady Lilith by Dante Gabriel Rosetti

A Sunday on La Grande Jatte (Georges Seurat)

A Sunday on La Grande Jatte by Georges Seurat

After the Hurricane, Bahamas (Winslow Homer)

After the Hurricane, Bahamas by Winslow Homer

Drawing Lots for Prizes (Kitagawa Utamaro)

Drawing Lots for Prizes by Kitagawa Utamaro

Portions of Field Armor (Jacob Halder)

Portions of a Field Armor by Jacob Halder

Sadie Pfeifer, a Cotton Mill Spinner (Lewis Wickes Hine)

Sadie Pfeifer, a Cotton Mill Spinner by Lewis Wickes Hine

Still Life With Monkey, Fruits, and Flowers (Jean Baptiste Oudry)

Still Life With Monkey, Fruits, and Flowers by Jean Baptiste Oudry

Man Leading a Giraffe, 5th Century Byzantine

Man Leading a Giraffe, 5th Century Byzantine

The Three Skulls (Paul Cézanne)

The Three Skulls by Paul Cézanne

The Madame B Album (Marie-Blanche Hennelle Fournier)

The Madame B Album by Marie-Blanche Hennelle Fournier

Coiled Trumpet in the Form of a Snarling Feline Face (c. 100 BCE to 500 CE)

Coiled Trumpet in the Form of a Snarling Feline Face (c. 100 BCE to 500 CE)

Crazy Quilt With Animals (Florence Elizabeth Marvin)

Crazy Quilt with Animals by Florence Elizabeth Marvin

Storytime (Eugenio Zampighi)

Storytime by Eugenio Zampighi

Cubist Village (Georges Gaudion)

Cubist Village by Georges Gaudion

Zig-Zag Passenger and Freight Train (Unknown)

Zig-zag Passenger and Freight Train (Unknown)

The Power of Music (William Sidney Mount)

The Power of Music by William Sidney Mount

The Large Tree (Paul Gauguin)

The Large Tree (Paul Gaugin)

After the Bath (Mary Cassatt)

After the Bath (Mary Cassatt)

Wedding Gown (Korea, Late 1800s)

Wedding Gown (Korea, Late 1800s)

The Contemplator (Eugène Carrière)

The Contemplator (Eugène Carrière)

The Girl I Left Behind Me (Eastman Johnson)

The Girl I Left Behind Me (Eastman Johnson)

24c Curtiss Jenny Invert Single

24c Curtiss Jenny invert single

Creeping Baby Doll Patent Model

Creeping Baby Doll Patent Model

Wrecked Zeppelin (British Library)

Wrecked Zeppelin photograph from The British Library

Skeleton (Tales of Terror Frontispiece)

Skeletons Frontispiece from Tales of Terror

Get Your Free Picture Writing Prompts Google Slides

Just click the button below to fill out the form and get instant access to free downloadable Picture Writing Prompts Google Slides with all the prompts included above.

How do you use picture writing prompts in your classroom? Come share ideas and ask for advice in the We Are Teachers HELPLINE group on Facebook .

These picture writing prompts are a unique way to excite young creative writers. Find options for all grades on a variety of subjects.

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Story Writing Academy

70 Picture Prompts for Creative Writing (with Free Slides)

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Visual writing prompts help young writers generate new ideas and overcome writer’s block. We’ve put together 70 picture prompts for creative writing that you can use in your writing centers or lesson plans to get your students’ creative juices flowing.

70 PICTURE PROMPTS FOR CREATIVE WRITING TEXT OVERLAY WITH TWO VISUAL WRITING PROMPTS

Picture Writing Prompts for All Ages

Writers of all ages and experience levels can get stuck thinking about what to write. Writer’s block is not just a challenge for reluctant writers. Even professional writers have days when they feel less than inspired.

Visual prompts can result in a vast array of story ideas. A single image viewed by ten writers will result in ten completely different stories. Even if you use verbal cues to get students thinking about the picture, each student will still write a unique response to the image.

Visual creative writing prompts are fantastic for elementary school because younger students often relate more to a pictorial prompt than a written one, but don’t shy away from using these with high school and middle school students as well. Pictures make a fun alternative to your typical writing prompts and story starters and can help shake up your regular routine.

How to Use Picture Prompts for Creative Writing

There’s no limit to the ways you can use writing prompts. Here are some of our favorite ways to incorporate image prompts into your weekly lesson plans .

  • Writing Center. Print cards or writing pages with these images on them and put them in a writing center for your students to discover at their own pace.
  • Specific Skills. Use story picture prompts to help kids work on specific writing skills. For example, you could work on descriptive writing by having them describe the setting of the picture in detail. Or you could work on character development by having them make up a history for a person in a picture.
  • Warm-up Activity: You could pop the pictures into Google slides and project an image on a screen or whiteboard for the first fifteen minutes of class and have students work on a short story as soon as they enter the class.

No matter how you decide to use them—whether at home or in the classroom—photographic writing prompts are a great way to cultivate a daily writing habit and encourage kids to explore new topics.

70 Pictures for Writing Prompts

We’ve selected 70 of the most interesting pictures we could find for this exercise. When choosing photos for writing prompts, we look for high-quality photos with intriguing subject matter, but we try to go beyond that. We want to share images that suggest a story, that make the viewer ask questions and wonder why things are the way they are.

We want to feel propelled to explore questions like, What happened before the photo that led to this moment? What are we witnessing in this photo? What’s about to happen?

A photo doesn’t make much of a story starter if it doesn’t suggest that there might be a bigger picture lurking beneath the surface.

We hope you and your students love these picture prompts for creative writing as much as we do. If you love them, go ahead and scroll to the bottom to grab your own copy.

We’ve included a couple of questions with each picture that you could use to spark pre-writing conversations in your classroom, which can be helpful when working with younger students who might need a little more direction.

pictures for creative writing for kids

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Whose cat is this? What is he looking at? Where is he?

a cat sits alone against a blue wall

What is the owl thinking about? Is he alone? What does he hope to eat for dinner?

an owl sits outside

Who are these frogs? What is their relationship with each other? Why are they taking photos?

two toy frogs stand in a field. One takes pictures of the other.

How did the dog get a phone? Why is he taking selfies? What is he doing with the pictures he takes?

a dog lays on a field and takes selfies

This cat doesn’t look too happy. What’s bugging him? Did he get too many phone calls or is he waiting on an important call that’s taking too long to come?

a black and white cat sits beside a phone

What do these chicks think of the dog? What does the dog think of the chicks? Do you think they can communicate with each other? If so, what would they say?

a dog lies beside two chicks

Where do these lemurs live? What are they looking at? What is something unusual that might happen to them?

a lemur lies on a branch while another hides in the background

What is this fox doing? Is he yawning and stretching or is he trying to scare someone away? What kind of mischief does he like to get up to?

a fox stretches and opens its mouth

Is this wolf alone? If not, who is with him? What is he planning to do? Does he have a family to feed or protect?

a lone wolf stands in a misty clearing

What is this child doing on the laptop? Can he actually read and type or is he just playing? If he can read and type, how did he learn that at such a young age? What other cool things can he do?

a toddler wearing a toque and glasses types on a laptop

Where is this woman? Is she lost? How did she get to this street? What interesting things might she discover as she explores this new city?

a woman stands in an empty street holding a map

Why is the dog wearing glasses? Can he see through them? What are he and the girl doing? How does he feel about it?

a woman holds a dog. Both wear glasses.

Who are these two little boys? What is their relationship with each other? What is the teddy bear’s story?

two boys sit in a bath holding a teddy bear

Who are these children? Why are they running? Is it a race or are they playing a game? Who’s going to win?

a group of children run across a field

Whose horse is this? Does the little boy own it or does he just visit it? Can the horse talk? How does the boy feel when he’s with the horse?

a boy sits on a fence and feeds a horse

What is this boy reading? Does the book have magical powers? Does the boy? Do the stories in the book become real or does something else special happen?

a boy reads a book that has some magical elements in it

Where is this man? How did he get there? What is he looking for?

a man dressed like a pirate looks through a telescope

Who is walking over the bridge? What’s on the other side? Is it worth the risk?

a top-down view of a person crossing a bridge

What are these people doing on the elephant? Where are they? Are they tourists or is the elephant their pet? What would life with an elephant be like?

two people ride an elephant through a field

Who made this map? It looks old. Has it been hidden away for a long time? Who discovered it and how? What does it lead to?

an old map

Whose typewriter is this? What important or secretive thing might they be working on? What could happen if the wrong person finds their work?

an old typewriter

Who are these three stuffed animals? Are they living? What is their story?

the backs of three stuffed animals

Whose ukulele is this? Why did they leave it here? Who might find it?

a green ukulele sticks out of the sand

Where is the owner of the bike? Where does this path lead? What if the bike’s not there when the owner returns?

a bike leans against a wooden railing

Whose shoes are these? Why did they leave them here? Why are they so dirty?

a pair of dirty shoes in the mud

Who was reading the newspaper? What was the most interesting thing they read? Where have they disappeared to?

a stack of newspapers, a white cup, and a pair of glasses

Who put this sign on the old truck? What do you think of it? How did the truck end up in its current condition and location?

a deserted old truck

Who set the table? Who are they expecting? What special occasion are they celebrating? What could go wrong?

a fancy table setting

Whose birthday cake is this? Are they having a party? Who is there? Who did they want to have there that didn’t show up?

a birthday cake

Who lives here? How do they access their home? What is their life like?

a home surrounded by water

Who built the igloo? Where is it? How does it feel to spend the night inside it?

an igloo

What is the history of this castle? Who lives in it now? Does it have any special or magical features?

a castle

Is this barn abandoned or do people live on the property? What kind of animals might live here? How do they keep themselves entertained?

a big red barn

What is it like living on a houseboat? What kind of community do you think forms among the neighbors? Imagine you live on one of these boats and think about how your daily life might change. What interesting things could you do if you lived here? What would you miss the most?

a row of houseboats

Where is this hut? Who lives here? What mystery might unfold if a stranger came knocking at their door?

a round hut

What is this lighthouse called? Who runs it? How often do they leave? What is the most memorable experience they’ve had as a lighthouse operator?

a lighthouse

How did this house get here? Does anyone live in it? What would life be like here?

a house on a rock surrounded by water

Where is this festive street? Are the people there celebrating something? Where is everybody?

a colorful European town

Who lives here? How did they build this house? Are they hiding from something? What does it look like inside?

a hobbit house with a yellow door

Whose notebook is this? Why did they leave it here? What’s written in it and how might it change the life of the person who finds it?

a notebook lying on a beach

What are these women doing? What are they supposed to be doing? Will they be in trouble if they get caught?

two women playing on a piece of wood

Who might be represented in this statue? Why is she being pulled by lions? What amazing things might she have done to deserve a statue in this prominent place?

a statue of a woman being pulled in a carriage by two lions

Where is this? Who is riding in the hot air balloons? Where are they going and why?

hot air balloons fly over a town

How old is this tree? Where is it? What are some of the most fascinating stories it could tell?

an old oak tree

Where is this carousel? Who is riding it? Can you think of a special or strange story about how it came to exist in this particular place?

a woman rides a carousel

What are these people thinking about? What’s at stake for them? What happens if one of them sneezes?

tightrope walkers walk on tightropes

Where are these penguins? What are they talking about? Which one of them is the leader?

4 penguins stand in a huddle

What is this place? Was it designed to be open like this or was it once part of someone’s home or a public building? How have people’s opinions of this place changed over time?

a room with statues in it

Who are these kids? Is this what they’re supposed to be doing? What happens when their teacher sees them?

kids play around in a dance studio

Who is supposed to ride in this boat? Where are they going? Will they make it there?

a small boat with a fancy seat

Is this plane special to someone? What did they have to do to get it/build it? Where will they fly to in it?

a yellow plane

Who decorated this train car? Which passengers will fill it up? What will they talk about?

an upscale train car with fancy seats

Whose skis are these? Why are they sticking out of the snow? How did their owner get down the mountain without them?

two skis and two poles stick out of a snowbank

Where does this gondola go? Who rides it? How does it feel to ride it?

a gondola

Who’s driving the monster truck? Why is it at the beach? What is it going to crush? Who is watching?

a monster truck does tricks on a beach

Where is the boat going? Who is on it? What is their mission?

a ship sails away from shore

What city is the helicopter flying over? Why? Is the driver looking for something specific or do they have a special delivery?

a helicopter flies over a city

What’s the little boy doing in the boat? Is he alone or is someone with him? Where is he trying to go?

a little boy holds an oar in a boat

Who is in the sub? What’s it like inside? What are they doing?

a submarine

Whose book is this? What’s it about? What’s happening to it?

a book that has water flowing out of it

How did that piece of land with the house on it break off from the rest of the world? Why? Where is it going? Is anyone in the house?

a fantasy graphic with a piece of land separating from the earth and floating away

Who is this girl? Where is she? Who is she shooting at?

a woman in the woods shoots a bow and arrow

Where does this scene take place? Is the lizard/dragon good or bad? What is its relationship with the girl?

a girl standing on the tip of a cliff pats the nose of a giant lizard

What do these books represent? What kind of world is this? What (or who) is inside the books?

a row of books designed to look like houses

What are these dinosaurs discussing? Where are they? What do they do for fun?

two dinosaurs

Whose cottage is this? Do they still live there? If not, where have they gone? If so, what do they do there?

a fairy tale cottage in the woods

What is the moth thinking about? Is it alone? What’s the biggest challenge it faces in this moment?

a moth on a flower

Who is the owl looking at? Has it read these books? What is its greatest talent?

an owl wearing beside a stack of books

Where are these trees? Why are they pink? Do they have any special powers or features?

trees in a wood covered with something pink

What do you think? Which kind of pictures do you like best for creative writing prompts ? Let us know in the comments.

Tuesday 5th of March 2024

I LOVE these! My daughter has always struggled with written story prompts and an internet search this week convinced me of the value of picture prompts for reluctant readers/writers (https://youcanjournal.com/journal-picture-prompts/ if you're interested!). I'll definitely be using these to help improve her writing skills. Thanks so much!

Tuesday 26th of December 2023

I think the idea of using picture prompts is a great idea. It initiates oral language thus building vocabulary. It allows lends itself to students working in small groups to stimulate new ideas. The prompts engage the students and gives the teacher the opportunity to focus on specific writing skills.

luke elford

Wednesday 13th of December 2023

cloey mckay

Tuesday 17th of October 2023

I tried this with myself and my 6th-grade students, and they love it. it gives room for so much creativity.

Nayyar Abbas

Tuesday 30th of May 2023

This is very good idea and it really works, viewing these one try to think one's own way that what these pictures are telling or asking? I also recommend that this idea should also be given to the students for building their creative instinct.

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Picture Prompts for Creative Writing

Watch your budding thinkers and writers be inspired by interesting and engaging images.

Sad Robot Writing Prompt: A heartbroken and forlorn robot with expressive features stands on a city street.

Hundreds of dynamic picture prompts, each with discussion questions and a suggested writing prompt. Encourage creativity to flourish in every classroom.

Dynamic image capturing the elated celebration of a young soccer player who just scored a decisive goal, with arms raised high in triumph.

Engage your class in collaborative storytelling through scaffolded Choose Your Own Adventure group writing. Ignite creativity and teamwork today.

Scaled Creature Writing Prompt: An ultraviolet close-up image showcasing the intricate patterns and textures on the skin of a mysterious scaled creature, which could be a reptile or a fantasy animal.

The Simple Homeschooler

40+ Instant Download Picture Writing Prompts for Kids!

Looking for some creative ways to get your student’s creative juices flowing? 

Young writers often experience writer’s block when staring at a blank page. All of their natural imagination and creativity seem to drain out of them when a school assignment is involved.

I have personally seen that oh so many times as a homeschool mom.

Thankfully, I found the secret sauce to getting reluctant writers motivated!

Putting different picture prompts in front of younger students is such a great way to get their minds rolling!

The visual image makes it much easier for them to form a writing idea that blossoms into a solid short story or narrative writing assignment.

Do you need some help getting your student in the right place to write?

I have put together a wide variety of images that would work for elementary, middle school students, and even high school students.

How To Use Your FREE Visual Writing Prompts 

Picture Writing Prompts for Kids Pin

At the bottom of this post, click the link for instant download access to the Picture Writing Prompts For Kids PDF files. 

****Only for personal, homeschool, co-op, or classroom use please.

There are two creative writing prompts on each page. Some have a list of questions, a sentence starter, or story ideas. Feel free to ignore or alter any of those. Definitely make it your own!

Once you have the files printed, cut each page in half. 

Allow your student to randomly pick one image every week. Consider making it a Monday warm-up or a fun Friday activity.

I intentionally made more than enough story picture prompts for the school year so that you and your kids can pass on some that are not your favorite things.

Enjoy and happy writing!

42 Picture Writing Prompts For Kids To Sharpen Writing Skills & Spark The Creative Process!

1. desert survival.

An exhausted pair struggle through the brutal desert, desperate to survive.

What amazing stroke of luck will save them?

2. Elephant Tight Rope Walker

Elephant Tight Rope Walking Writing Prompt Picture for Kids

This famous circus performing elephant is the best tight rope walker in the world, but her trainer is unkind.

She has a plan to escape…

3. Magic Forest Tunnel

Forest Tunnel Writing Prompt Image

A mysterious tunnel magically opens up in front of you and your friends.

Do you walk through it?

What could be waiting on the other side?

How will you return?

4. Gorilla In The Jungle

Gorilla image for Writing Prompt

What did this gorilla suddenly see?

How does he feel about it?

What will he do?

5. Hot Air Balloon Escape

The only way to cross the rocky, dangerous land is by hot air balloon. But you are running out of fuel fast and falling behind.

What will you do?

6. Invisible Person 

Is this a villain or a hero?

How did they become invisible?

Where are they going?

7. Snorkel Discovery

Snorkeling image for creative writing prompt for kids

What did she just discover on her snorkel vacation?

Is it valuable, dangerous, or rare?

A new or old type of discovery?

What will she do with it?

8. Surfing Adventure

surfing image for creative writing aid

You’re riding the wave of a lifetime, when suddenly you see something looking back at you through the water…

9. Dog in Trouble

Dog surrounded by mess

You thought for sure that you could hide this dog from your mom.  She would never know!

What happened?

What will your mom do now?

10. Dogs in Control

dogs in biker outfits

You have just been informed that these two are your real parents.

What are their rules?

How does your household change?

What is it like to have dogs for parents?

11. Dogs in the Workplace

dogs in scientist costumes

Dr. Wrinkles and Professor Treats have just made a fascinating discovery!

What is it?

How will it help the planet?

12. Detective Pug

dog in raincoat image

Sherlock the Pug is on the trail of another mystery!

What crime is he investigating? Who is involved?

How will he solve the mystery before nap time?

13. Magic Gift

magic in hands writing prompt

What is the magical gift in her hands?

Who is holding it?

Who will receive it? How will they use it?

14. Treasure Map Revealed

ancient treasure map image for writing

An ancient treasure map is about to be revealed to you.

Where does it lead?

What is the treasure? Who does it really belong to?

Will you go after it?

15. Hidden Garden

fairy tale bridge over stream

Something is hidden away in this garden for safekeeping.

Where is it hidden?

What is it? Who hid it?

Who will find it?

16. Wishing Well

Well in middle of desert writing prompt for kids

This enchanted well will bring up anything you wish for – but each person only gets three wishes.

Who finds this well?

What do they wish for?

What happens next?

17. Trapped

This man may be trapped in a glass jar, but he’s got a plan.

Who is he? How did he get trapped?

Who trapped him and why?

What will the man do first?

18. Surprise Box

kid opening gift box

This kid just opened a gift box and is completely shocked!

What’s inside? 

Who gave it to her?

19. Letter to Santa

This kid is excited for Christmas…but he has some explaining to do about his behavior to Santa.

What does he write to Santa?

What bad things did he do this year?

How does he explain his choices?

20. Rotten Day or Awesome Day

Write this kid’s diary entry.

Did she have a rotten, no good day?

Or did she have the best day of her life?

What things happened to her today?

21. Urgent Letter

Writing a letter for writing prompt image

Write an urgent letter that was hurriedly written in the middle of the night. 

What is so important? What happened?

Who needs to know about it quickly?

What will happen if the letter doesn’t arrive in time?

22. Soccer Moment

kids playing soccer

Who are these kids?

Have they been riding the bench or leading the team all season?

What will happen when they go against each other in this game?

Epic win or epic fail? Who do you want to win? Why?

23. Lost At Sea

Man in suit and scuba gear on beach

This man has lost something valuable in the ocean and he must act quickly to get it back.

What did he lose?

How was it dropped in the ocean?

Will he ever get it back?

24. Leaving On A Jet Plane

packed overflowing suitcase

You pack a suitcase to go to your absolute favorite place.

Where are you going?

What do you pack? Why?

Who do you take with you on the trip?

25. Deserted Island

You wash ashore on a deserted island with only three things.

What three things did you bring with you?

How do you survive on the island?

What is your plan for escape or how are you rescued?

26. Breaking News!

newspaper

The whole world woke up to the most shocking news!

How does your life change because of the news?

27. Secret News

This kid discovered something pretty amazing about himself.

What do you think it was?

Who will he tell about his news?

28. Horse-Sized Hug

horses nuzzled together

How do these horses know each other?

Why do you think they are hugging?

How are they feeling? Tired, sad, happy, content?

Why do they feel that way?

29. The Journey Begins!

happy dog hanging out car window

This dog is finally on the adventure he’s always been waiting for!

Where is he going?

Who is he with?

30. Broken Vase

Oh, no! How did this vase get broken?

Who does it belong to?

What will happen when it is discovered?

31. Embarrassing Moment

embarrassed kid

Why is this kid so embarrassed?

What did she do? Or what happened to her?

What does she do next?

32. Light Spear

Man with light spear near ocean

Who is standing on the beach and what is he holding?

What is happening with the ocean?

Is he working with the ocean or is the ocean his enemy?

What will happen next?

33. Celebrate!

decoration of birthday party table with sweets for child

You have been invited to the biggest party of the year!

What is the party celebrating?

Who is there? What food is being served?

What do you do for fun at the party?

34. Digging Dogs

dogs digging a hole

You are on a beach vacation and your dogs start furiously digging a hole. 

Why are they digging?

What do they find?

What do you do with their find?

35. Worm Hole

Worm hole

A worm hole appears in your bedroom. What happens when you jump through it?

Can you time travel through it? If so, which time period would you go to?

Does it take you anywhere you want to go on Earth? Where would you jump to?

Can you go to other galaxies?

36. Underwater City

city under water

How did this city flood?

Did humans survive and adapt to the water…or do fish rule the city now?

If you could live here, would you want to?

37. Strange Aircraft in the Woods

Alian space ship on earth

You go for a walk during your family’s camping trip and get turned around. Suddenly you see this in a clearing. 

Is it a spaceship or military aircraft? Will you meet aliens? 

Who is inside? Do they want to meet you? Do you want to meet them?

Why did the ship come?

38. Cage Door Left Open

Empty cage for picture writing prompt for kids

Uh oh. It looks like something escaped from the cage.

What was inside? Who let it out?

Will it come back? Who will go looking for it? What will they find when they go looking for the creature?

39. Talking Animal

cat

While playing in your yard, you discover a talking cat!

Write down your conversation.

How did you find out it could talk? What did the cat have to say?

What was the cat’s personality like? Why was it in your yard?

40. Alien Life

River on another planet

NASA has finally discovered a planet full of life! You have been tasked with traveling to the planet to make first contact with the aliens.

How are the aliens like us? How are they different? How does the first meeting go?

How is the planet like Earth? How is it different?

Which place would you rather live?

41. Ships 

Large ship with sails

This ship is setting sail on a critical mission. Where is it going? 

Exploring for new lands? Conquering new lands?

In search of treasure? What will they find instead?

42. Dinosaurs Live!

dinosaurs still alive today with humans

In this world, dinosaurs never went extinct. Describe a day in your life with dinosaurs!

How is it fun?

How might it be dangerous?

Do you interact with the dinosaurs or hide from them? Do you have them as pets? Friends? Workers in your society?

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE PICTURE WRITING PROMPTS FOR KIDS

I know these writing exercises will be a hit with your students this school year!

They really are the best friend of the teacher who wants to bring fun and imagination into writing.

Once you’ve gone through these images, consider having your students make up their own writing prompts or check out video writing prompts too!

Blank Handwriting Worksheet Pin

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Ty I looked a lot of places for the idea in my head and I found it here Much appreciation

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ThinkWritten

300 Fun Writing Prompts for Kids: Story Starters, Journal Prompts & Ideas

Are you a parent or teacher? Here are 300 fun and creative writing prompts for kids to spark the imagination of young writers everywhere. Use these kids writing ideas as journaling prompts, story starters or just for fun!

origami, paper, folding

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It’s never too early to start writing, and so we’ve created this fun list of 300 creative kids writing prompts for teacher and parents to use.

You’ll love these fun ideas for kids writing prompts to use as creative sparks to get young imaginations writing in no time!

writing prompts for kids

These are perfect to use as kids journal writing prompts, as short story writing prompts, or just for exercises to help students and children of all ages tap into their creativity. Maybe your kids will write an essay, maybe a poem, or maybe even a whole book!

Whether you are a teacher or parent looking to inspire your kids to write, or maybe even an adult who would like to practice writing with a more playful and young-hearted approach, I hope you find these creative writing prompts inspiring!

Buy the Printable Cards!  We will always have this list of 300 kids writing prompts available for free, but I’m very excited to now also offer an  ad-free printable version of these prompts  in my online Etsy shop. Thank you for your support!

The Ultimate List of 300 Fun & Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

#1. Imagine a giant box is delivered to your front doorstep with your name on it. What’s inside and what happens when you open it?

#2. Write a short story about what it might be like if you woke up one morning with a mermaid tail.

#3. Which is better, winter or summer? Write about the reasons why you think winter or summer is better.

#4. Write about what would it be like if you had an alligator as a pet.

#5. If you had $1,000, what would you buy and why?

#6. Write a story using these 5 words: apple, train, elephant, paper, banjo

#7. What do you want be when you grow up and why?

#8. Who is your favorite person on the planet? What do you like most about that person?

#9. If you could have any secret super power, what would you want it to be and why?

#10. Write about 3 places you would like to travel someday. What do these three places have in common?

#11. Write about a time you felt really happy. What happened? What made you feel happy?

#12. Imagine what would happen if someone shrunk you down to be only 1″ tall. How would your life change?

#13. If you were in charge of the whole world, what would you do to make the world a happier place?

#14. Write a story about what it would be like to climb to the very top of the highest mountain in the world.

#15. If you were in charge of planning the school lunch menu, what foods would you serve each day?

#16. What are some of your favorite animals? What do you like about them?

writing prompt card for kids example

#17. Imagine that dogs take over the world. What do they make the humans do?

#18. Write a story about flying to outer space and discovering a new planet.

#19. You are a mad scientist and have invented a new vegetable. What is it called? What does it look like? What does it taste like? Most importantly: Is it safe to eat?

#20. You go to school one morning to discover your best friend has been turned into a frog by an evil witch! How do you help your friend?

#21. Describe what it is like when trees lose all of their leaves in the autumn season.

#22. Write about your favorite sport and why you like it so much.

#23. Imagine what it might be like to live on a boat all the time and write about it.

#24. If you had one wish, what would it be?

#25. Write about what you might do if you have the super power to become invisible.

#26. You are walking through the forest when one of the trees starts talking to you. What does it say? What do you do?

#27. The weather forecast is calling for a blizzard in the middle of the summer. What do you do?

#28. What types of transportation will people have in the future?

#29. What were some of your favorite toys when you very little? Do you still enjoy playing with them?

#30. What would a day in your life be like if you were a movie star?

#31. Imagine you’ve invented a time machine! What year do you travel to?

#32. What are your favorite things to do over summer vacation?

#33. What is your favorite holiday and why?

#34. If you could meet any fictional character from a book, who would it be?

#35. You are writing a travel guide for kids visiting your city. What places do you think they should visit?

#36. What is a food you hate? Write about it!

#37. Imagine what it would be like if there was no electricity. What would be different in your daily routine?

#38. You are building a new city! What types of things do you think your city needs? How will you convince people to move to your new city?

#39. What is your favorite movie? Write your review of the movie and why you think people should watch it.

magic sweater writing prompt for kids

#40. Imagine you get a magic sweater for your birthday. What happens when you wear the sweater? What do you do with these new found magical powers?

#41. You are the security guard at the zoo and someone has stolen a rhinoceros! How do you track down the thief?

#42. You have been invited to have lunch with the queen. What foods do you eat and what topics do you and the queen discuss?

#43. If you could design a school uniform, what types of clothes would you suggest? What colors would they be?

#44. Imagine you are a reporter interviewing a celebrity about their life. What questions do you ask?

#45. You are running a lemonade stand. Describe the steps for how you make lemonade and the types of customers you see during the day.

#46. Write a story about being the ruler of an underwater world.

#47. Write an acrostic poem for the word “treehouse”.

#48. You decide to grow a sunflower, but the sunflower grows so tall it reaches up to the sky! Write about what happens when you decide to climb to the top. What do you discover?

#49. Imagine you look out the window and it is raining popsicles from the sky! Write a story about the experience.

#50. If you could be any animal, which one would you be and why?

#51. If you were on a spaceship, what would you be most excited about seeing?

#52. Do you have any pets at home? Write an essay about how you take care of your pets. If you do not have a pet, what type of pet might you like?

writing prompts for pets

#53. Imagine you are opening a store that only sells items which are blue. What types of items do you sell?

#54. Have you ever lost something that is important to you? Were you able to find it?

#55. Write a story about a kid who is moving to a new school. How do you think they might feel?

#56. Rewrite the ending of your favorite fairy tale. For example, what would have happened if Cinderella never went to the ball?

#57. Have you ever forgotten to do your homework? What happened?

#58. Do you have a favorite song? Write about the type of music you like to listen to.

#59. Imagine your parents wake you up one morning to tell you they will take you to do anything you want to do for the whole day – you don’t even have to go to school or do your chores. What would you choose to do and why?

#60. Do you like amusement parks? What are some of your favorite rides?

#61. Write a story using these three words: detective, piano, and pizza.

#62. Have you ever been to the beach? Write about your favorite things to do. If you have never been to the beach, what would you like to do the first time you visit?

#63. Is there a favorite tv show you like to watch? Write about your favorite character and why they are your favorite.

#64. Write a poem using onomatopoeia , where the words you use are pronounced similar to the sound they make. For example, buzz, bark, sizzle, slam and pop.

#65. Have you ever had to stand in line to wait a long time for something? What did you do while you waited? How did you feel while waiting? How did you feel once the wait was over?

#66. Is it a good idea to keep ALL secrets a secret? Write about examples of when it is okay to spill a secret – and when it isn’t.

#67. Is there something you are good at doing? Write about your best strengths.

#68. What historical time period and location would you go back to live in if you could? Write about it!

#69. Write about 5 things you can do that are important for you to stay healthy and safe.

#70. Do you think thunderstorms are scary? Why or why not?

#71. What would you most like to learn over the next year? Think about things that interest you or questions you might have about the world and make a list!

#72. You are going on a trip to a jungle safari! What items do you pack in your suitcase?

pictures for creative writing for kids

#73. Imagine you are sitting at home one day and you hear someone shrieking in the living room they see a mouse in the house! Write a story about what might happen next.

#74. You are writing a letter to someone who is having a hard time making new friends at school. What do you write? What advice do you give them?

#75. Imagine you just met a magician – but their beloved rabbit who they pull out of a hat for all the tricks has been kidnapped! How do you help find the rabbit?

#76. Do you hear what I hear? Set a timer for 5 minutes and write about all of the sounds you hear in those 5 minutes.

#77. Imagine you go to get a haircut and they accidentally shave your head! How do you feel about that and what would you do?

#78. Do you find it easy to talk to people you don’t know? What are some ways you can start up a conversation with someone you have never met before?

#79. Are there any chores you have to do at home? What are they? What do you like – and not like – about each one?

#80. Open up a random book to any page. Write for 5 minutes about the first word you read.

#81. Pretend you are a writer for your city’s newspaper. Who would you like to interview for a news story and why?

#82. There are many fictional characters who live in unusual houses, such as the old woman who lived in a shoe. What kind of unusual house would you like to live in? Write about what it would be like to live in an unusual house!

#83. Write a list of 10 things you can do to practice kindness to others.

#84. Is there a homework subject you dread? Why do you not like getting homework in that subject?

#85. What is your favorite month of the year? Write about why you like it and some of your favorite things to do during that month.

#86. Imagine you are planning a surprise birthday party for someone. How do you keep it a surprise?

#87. Pretend you walked outside to find a sleeping dragon in the grass! Why is the dragon there? Is it a friendly dragon? What do you do? Write about it!

#88. What are you grateful for today and why?

#89. You were on your way to a very important event when you fell into a puddle. Now what?

#90. Have you ever watched a movie and didn’t like how it ended? Write what you think should happen instead.

#91. Can you answer this riddle from Alice in Wonderland ? How is a raven like a writing desk?

#92. Imagine you are the captain of a pirate ship. Write a diary entry for what your day was like.

#93. If you could start any type of business, what kind of business would you start? What types of products or services would you provide?

#94. Write a sequel to one of your favorite fairy tales. For example, what was Goldilocks’s next adventure after she left the bears?

#95. What is something you are afraid of? What helps you to feel less afraid of something? What would you say to a friend who feels scared to help them feel less afraid?

#96. Write a letter to your future self in 20 years.

kids writing prompts and ideas

#97. In addition to basic survival needs such as food, water, air and shelter, what are 3 things you would you need to be happy?

#98. If you could invent a robot of any type who could do anything you imagine, what types of things would you would have the robot to do?

#99. Which do like better? Apples or Oranges? How are they alike? How are they different?

#100. Why did the chicken cross the road? You are a detective and are assigned to the case. How do solve the mystery?

#101. Write instructions for how to make your favorite snack. Be sure you add your favorite tips and suggestions for how to select the best ingredients!

#102. Imagine you borrowed a friend’s favorite lucky pencil to help you pass a math test – but then it snapped in half! How will you ever tell the news to your friend?

#103. Look around the current room you are sitting in and choose 3 random objects that are nearby. Now write a story or poem that includes those three items!

#104. Write a letter to the author of a book you recently read and tell them what you liked most about the book.

#105. Ernest Hemingway is famous for writing a six word story. Can you write a story in just 6 words?

#106. What do you think will be the future for cell phones? Will people still use them in 25 years or will something else take its place?

#107. Do you want to go to college? Why or why not?

#108. Write a story or poem about a kitten who wanders off and gets lost. How does the kitten find its way home?

#109. Currently, it is required by law that kids go to school. Do you think this is a good or bad idea?

#110. If you could invent a new board game, what would it be called? How is it played? What are the rules? What makes it fun to play? Write about it!

#111. Imagine you come home to discover your entire bedroom is covered in ketchup! What on earth happened? What is your reaction? How do you clean everything up?

#112. What is something you learned today?

#113. Would you rather have a goldfish or shark as a pet?

#114. From A-Z: make a list of something for every letter of the alphabet.

#115. Have you ever gone fishing? If you have, did you like it? Why or why not? If you haven’t, do you think you might want to?

#116. What is one of the most important things you do each and every day?

#117. Write a story about Gretchen the Grouch, a girl who is always angry! Will she ever be happy? Why is she so grumpy all of the time?

#118. How do you feel when someone takes something of yours without asking? What is a good way to deal with it when that happens?

#119. Write a poem that starts with the word “if”.

#120. Write a story about a family of rabbits who live in the woods. What are some of the challenges they face?

#121. What clothes do you think are the most comfortable? What kind of clothes do you like to wear the most? What clothes do you NOT like to wear?

#122. Imagine there are no grocery stores and you must get your own food. What are some of the ways you find food? What types of things do you eat?

#123. What are 3 things you can do that are good for the environment?

#124. If you could meet any famous person today, who would you want to meet and why? What questions might you ask them?

#125. A tongue twister is a quick poem where many of the words start with the same letter and are similar in sound. For example, “Peter picked a peck of pickled peppers.” Try writing your own with this fun kids writing prompt!

#126. What is the first thing you think of when you hear or see the word green?

#127. A hero is someone who is admired for their courage and achievements. What do you think makes someone a hero? Who are some of your heroes?

#128. What did you do during summer vacation last year? What do you want to do for summer vacation this year?

#129. Write a story about a super hero dog who saves the day! Who does the dog help and why?

kids journal prompts

#130. Would you rather live somewhere that is always cold, or somewhere that is always hot? Write about which one you would rather choose.

#131. Have you ever volunteered to help a charity? If so, write about the experience! If not, what are some charities you think you might like to volunteer for?

#132. What does the word courage mean to you?

#133. What makes you unique? What are some things about you that make you an individual?

#134. Have you ever been to a museum? What is your favorite thing to look at on display?

#135. What can you do to set a good example for others to be kind?

#136. A Tall Tale is a story that exaggerates something that actually happened. Write a tall tale about something that recently happened to you.

#137. What is one of your favorite toys that you think you might still want to have and play with when you are 22 years old?

#138. Oh no! Everyone around you is sick with a nasty cold! Write a silly poem about how you try to avoid catching their germs!

#139. Personification is when a non-living object takes on human characteristics. Write a story where you personify a common electronic gadget in your house, such as the Television or toaster.

#140. Write a poem using similes, which is when you say an object is like something else. Here is an example of a simile: “Her eyes were as blue as the sky.”

#141. Have you ever read a book written by Dr. Suess? Write your own “Suess-style” story, complete with rhymes and made up words.

#142. Do you have any siblings? Think about what it might mean to be a good brother or sister and write about it!

#143. Make a list of questions to interview your parents or grandparents about what it was like when they were growing up as a kid. Then, ask them the questions and write about their answers!

#144. You are in charge of writing a new radio show just for kids! What topics will you talk about? What music do you play?

#145. What do you usually eat for breakfast every day? What, in your opinion, is the greatest breakfast food ever created? What makes it so great?

#146. Write a 12 line poem where every line is about a different month of the year.

#147. What is something you look forward to doing the most when you are an adult?

Use these prompts in your classroom!  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to inspire your students to write! Thank you for your support!

#148. Do you like to try new things? What is something new you have tried recently or would like to try?

#149. Imagine what it might be like to be alive in Egypt when the pyramids were built. Write about what it was like.

#150. A credo is a statement of personal beliefs. Try writing your own credo for things that you believe in and feel are important.

#151. The circus has come to town but they have no place to perform! How do you help the ringmaster find a place to put on a show?

circus lion

#152. Do you like to act? What are some of your favorite actors or actresses? What do you think makes someone a good actor or actress?

#153. “Practice makes perfect” is a popular saying. What is something you like to practice so you can become better at it? A sport? A musical instrument? A special skill? Do you like to practice?

#154. Write about what it might be like to be water drops freezing and turning into ice.

#155. Do you think it is important to keep your room clean? What do you like about having a clean room?

#156. Imagine your parents are sending you away for a two week summer camp trip. Would you be excited? Why or why not?

#157. What are you currently learning about in history class? Write a fictional story about someone from the past you are learning about.

#158. Many wars have been fought in the past. Instead of going to war, what do you think countries could do to resolve their differences peacefully?

#159. Every year over 8 billion plastic bottles and cans are thrown away. What are some things you can do to help encourage your family and friends to recycle?

#160. Imagine if you were the principal of the school. What might you do differently? What things would you do that are the same? Write about it!

#161. Pretend that one day you are at your neighbor’s house and you notice a strange noise coming from the basement. You go downstairs to investigate to see a large machine running with many lights and buttons. Why is it there?

#162. Write an essay that starts with the line, “Tomorrow, I hope…”

#163. If you could give one thing to every child in the world, what would you want to give them?

#164. Do you have a piggy bank at home? How do you earn money to add to your savings?

writing ideas for kids

#165. What qualities make a house a home? What are 3 things you think every house should have?

#166. Would you rather go scuba diving or rock climbing? Write about which one you think you would like to do more and why.

#167. Do you think it is a good idea for kids to write a daily journal? What are some of the benefits of writing every day?

#168. Do you like watching fireworks or are they too noisy? Write about a time when you saw fireworks in the sky.

#169. Oh no! Your friend has turned into a statue! How did this happen? What do you do? Does your friend ever turn back into a person again?

#170. If you could be any movie character, who would you be and why?

#171. A mysterious message appears in code on your computer screen. What could it mean?

#172. If you could go to work with one of your parents for a day, what do you think the day would be like? What types of things do your parents do at work all day long?

#173. Imagine you are the President and you are creating a new national holiday. What is your holiday about? How is it celebrated? What day of the year do you celebrate? Write about it!

#174. You won a never-ending lifetime supply of spaghetti noodles! What will you do with all of these noodles?

#175. Would you rather be a bunny rabbit or a hawk? Why did you choose the one you chose?

#176. Your teacher has been acting mysterious lately. After school one day, you notice a weird green light shining through underneath the door of your classroom. What do you do? What is happening with your teacher?

#177. Write an article about tips for how kids can be more organized and study well for tests.

#178. Look at any product in your house and read the ingredients labels. Research what each ingredient is. Do you think these ingredients are good or bad for people?

#179. If you were a doctor, what do you think would be the most important part of your job every day?

#180. The school librarian needs your help! A truck just arrived with 2,000 books and she can’t fit all the books onto the shelves! What do you do? How do you find a place to put all these books?

#181. Do you think it would be fun to plant a garden? What types of plants would you want to grow? Write about your garden ideas.

#182. What is a sport or activity you would like to try playing for the first time?

#183. Do you think kids should be allowed to do the same things as adults? What things do you think kids should be able to do that only grown-ups can?

#184. Imagine you and your parents switch places for a day. Your parents are the kids and you are now in charge! What would you do?

#185. Write a get-well letter to someone who has been sick. What can you say to make them feel better?

#186. If you could visit any planet in the solar system, which planet would you like to visit the most and why? Write about what it might be like.

#187. Have you ever been to a farm? What did you like about it? If you haven’t been to a farm, do you think you might like to visit one? Why or why not?

#188. The mayor of the city has a big problem and needs your help! What is the problem and how will you solve it?

#189. Pretend your little sister ate carrots for dinner and the next morning woke up with rabbit ears!  How did this happen? What do you do? Will she be a rabbit forever?

#190. Imagine you wake up in the morning to find out you get to relive any day of your life again for the whole day. What day would you want to experience again and why?

#191. Do you think you might like to be a firefighter? Why or why not?

fire fighter writing prompt

#192. You are a lawyer and your client has been accused of stealing a car. How do you convince the jury your client is innocent?

#193. Think of the four elements: fire, air, earth, and water. Which of these four elements do you like the best?

#194. What would you do if you could be invisible for a whole day? Do you think you would enjoy it or be glad to be back to normal the next day? Write about it!

#195. Imagine you are a meteorologist and people are starting to get angry that your weather predictions are always wrong. What do you do?

#196. If you could create any law, what would it be? Why do you think the law is an important one to have?

#197. You are going incognito and need to hide to your identity so you aren’t recognized or discovered while you walk through the city. What type of disguise do you wear?

#198. Write a persuasive letter to your parents explaining why you should get a new pet. Make sure you provide a convincing argument they won’t be able to refuse!

#199. Your friend wants to do something dangerous. What should you do?

#200. How do you think the world would be different if there were no oceans?

#201. What do you do when someone disagrees with your opinions? Is there a better way to handle conflicting opinions?

#202. What do you think you as a kid could do to help encourage more people to read?

#203. Do you have a good luck charm? What makes this item lucky? When do you use it? How do you use it?

#204. What is at the end of a rainbow? Imagine you follow a rainbow to the end. What do you discover? Is it a pot of gold, or something else?

Use these prompts in your classroom!  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to inspire your students to write! Thank you for your support!

#205. What do you think the consequences should be for someone who is caught cheating on a test at school?

#206. Imagine you are riding your bike one day when you encounter an older kid who wants to steal your bike. What do you do?

#207. You are the lead singer and star of a famous rock and roll band, but there is one problem – your drummer is jealous of your fame! How do you solve this situation?

#208. If you could help a group of kids in any part of the world, what kids would you want to help the most and why? What are some things you think would help these kids?

#209. Everyone knows the house on the end of the street is haunted. What are some of the strange things that happen there? Why is the house haunted?

#210. You notice at school one day there is a door to a secret passage next to the janitor’s closet and decide to explore. Where does it lead? Why is it there? Do you go alone or bring a friend along?

#211. A bucket list is a list of things you want to accomplish in your lifetime. What are 5 things on your bucket list?

#212. Imagine the perfect treehouse or clubhouse for you and all of your friends as a place to hang out. Describe what it is like inside.

#213. Do you get bored easily? Make a list of things you can do whenever you feel like you are bored and there is nothing fun to do!

#214. Now vs. Then: Think about how today is different from one year ago. How have you changed? What things in your life are different?

#215. Write your autobiography about your life.

#216. It’s a heat wave! What do you do when the weather is hot? What are some of your favorite ways to stay cool?

#217. What are three important safety tips every kid should know to stay safe?

#218. What genre of books do you like to read the most? Write about the characteristics of the genre and list some of your favorite books as examples.

#219. Holiday Traditions: How does your family celebrate the different holidays and events? What are some traditions you do each and every year?

#220. Imagine one day in science class a science experiment goes terribly wrong and now you and all of your classmates have superpowers! What are your superpowers and what do you do with them?

superheroes writing prompts for kids

#221. Who is favorite teacher? Why are they your favorite?

#222. You are baking a cake, but you accidentally put salt in the cake instead of sugar. Nobody will eat it! How do you feel? What will you do next time?

#223. Do you think it is important to have good table manners? What do you think some good manners to practice might be?

#224. Many schools no longer teach cursive handwriting. Do you think this is a good or bad thing? Do you know how to write cursive handwriting? Would you like to learn if you haven’t?

#225. If you were the owner of a theme park, what types of rides and attractions would have? Describe what they would be like and why people would want to visit your park.

#226. Your parents give you $100 to spend at the grocery store. What do you buy and why?

#227. Some people who are alive today grew up without computers or video games. What would you do if you didn’t have a computer or video games? How would life be different?

#228. You walk into your living room and discover there is a giant elephant standing there. How did the elephant get there? What do you do about it? How do you explain the elephant in the living room to your parents?

#229. Have you ever had a weird dream? What happened in the dream? What do you think it means?

#230. Do you like to draw or paint? Write a story inspired by a painting, doodle, or sketch.

#231. You are being sent on a mission to outer space to live in a space station for 5 years. What supplies do you pack and why?

#232. What is the scariest creature alive on earth? Describe in detail what makes it so horrifying.

#233. What do you think your pet might say if they could talk to you?

#234. Imagine your school is putting on a talent show. What act will you perform? What other acts will be in the show?

#235. If you could breathe under water, what would you do?

#236. What time of day do you think school should start? Write a convincing argument on why or why not the time of day school starts should change.

#237. If you were to start your own YouTube video channel, what would the videos on your channel be about?

#238. Do you like to cook? What are some things you like to make and eat?

#239. Your school is having a field day and you are in charge of planning the activities and games. What types of activities and games would you plan for the event?

#240. If you had a remote control drone that takes video of everything it sees from the sky and you could take it anywhere, what would you film? For example, the inside of a volcano or soar it over the plains of Africa.

#241. The Bermuda Triangle is an area of the ocean where many ships and planes have gone missing. Why do you think this could be? Write a story about what it might be like to travel there.

#242. There are 7 great wonders of the world – which one do you think is the most wonderful?

#243. If you could speak any foreign language fluently, which one would you like to speak and why?

#244. You are inventing a new flavor of ice cream! What is the new flavor called and what ingredients do you need to make it?

#245. Would you rather go to a baseball game or read a good book? What reasons do you have for your choice?

#246. You walk outside to get your mail and your mailbox starts talking to you! What does your mailbox have to say?

#247. Imagine you are a famous person. What are you most famous for? What is it like to be famous?

#248. What do you think would be the most fun job in the world to have? Give examples of why you think it would be a fun job to have.

#249. Write a poem about an object that is shiny and dazzling.

#250. Do you like to watch the Olympics? Why or why not? If yes, what is your favorite Olympic sport?

#251. What kind of car do you want to drive when you are older? Do you think learning to drive will be easy or hard?

#252. What do you think would make for a great gift to give someone on their birthday?

#253. Describe a time when you needed help and someone helped you. What did they help you with and how did it make you feel?

#254. If you could be any type of fruit or vegetable, what would you be and why?

Love these prompts?  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to use at home or in the classroom!

#255. Do you think it is more important to have a good imagination or have all the facts proven?

#256. Do you have a favorite aunt, uncle, or another relative? Write a story about their life and why you like to be with them.

#257. Think of a time you laughed really, really hard. What was so funny? Why were you laughing? Write about it!

#258. Write a poem about an emotion. For example: happy, sad, angry, embarrassed, guilty.

#259. Do you ever have a hard time falling asleep? What are some things that help you feel sleepy?

#260. If you could drive a car, where would you drive and why?

#261. Imagine you are trading places with your friend for a day. What will it be like to be at their house? What will your friend think while they are at your house? Write about it!

#262. If you could break a world record, what would it be? What do you think would be necessary to be able to break the world record?

#263. Imagine you live in Colonial times. What would it be like to grow up as a kid in Colonial America?

#264. You are building a new city. What is the name of your city? What is the weather like? What buildings will you build?

#265. What do you think it would be like to work as a sailor on big ship in the ocean each day?

ocean writing prompt

#266. Imagine you are the teacher for the day. What types of activities do you make the students in the class do?

#267. How would you feel if your parents told you that you would be getting a new baby brother or sister? Write about it!

#268. Do you know any good jokes? What are some of your favorite jokes? What makes them funny? Do you think you could write your own?

#269. Imagine you are floating down a river on a raft. What types of things can you see from the river that you normally wouldn’t see from the land?

#270. You want to start a new hobby collecting something. What kinds of things would you collect and why?

#271. Your mom announces she is having a yard sale. Would you let her sell any of your things? Why or why not?

#272. Imagine you walk out your front door one morning and it is raining popcorn! What do you do?

#273.  You are camping in the woods one night and hear a scary noise. What do you do? What might be the cause?

#274. What do you think might make kids really happy to go to school? What are some things you think schools should do so that it could be more fun?

#275. Today’s lunch at the cafeteria was unusually horrible. You are a detective on the case to investigate. What do you think is the cause?

#276. If you had a tree that grows money, what would you do?

#277. What would you do if you had a unicorn as a pet?

#278. Would you rather go to the zoo or go to the aviary? Which one would you pick and why?

#279. What are some safety tips you should follow when riding a bike?

#280. You are designing the cover of a magazine. What are some of the headlines on the cover?

#281. Are you afraid of the dark? Why or why not?

#282. If you could learn to play any type of musical instrument, which one would you like to learn how to play and why?

#283. Imagine you are playing a sport that involves a ball, such as soccer, baseball or kickball. What would it be like if the ball could talk?

#284. You come home to discover a friendly alien has been living in your closet. What do you do? Why is there an alien in your closet?

#285. Is there something you are afraid of that you wish you weren’t afraid of? Write about it.

#286. Write about the best party you’ve ever been to. What made the day fun and special?

#287. What makes you feel loved and cared about? What are some ways people can show you that they love and care about you?

#288. There is a kite flying competition coming up and you are going to design your own kite. What will your kite look like? What colors will it be? Will it have any certain shape?

#289. You are given the challenge to drop an egg on the floor – without it breaking! What are some things you might try to make sure the egg won’t break?

#290. What are some of the things you can do every day to stay healthy?

#291. Do you think grown-ups are boring? Why do you think they are so boring all of the time? What is something fun that boring grown-ups could do instead of being so boring?

#292. Write a lyrical poem or song about what kids do while they are at school all day long.

#293. What are the first things you like to do when you are done with school each day? What are some of the activities you like when you are not at school?

#294. Imagine dinosaurs were still alive today. How do you think our lives would be different?

#295. Would you rather visit a volcano or a desert? Which one would you choose and why?

#296. Is there a sound you think is annoying? What types of sounds drive you crazy? Write about them!

#297. What do you think it would be like to be the size of an ant for a day? What types of things would you do?

Writing Prompt: What would it be like if your teddy bear came to life?

#298. Imagine one of your stuffed animals comes to life and starts talking to you. What types of things will you talk about? What will you do?

#299. What makes you feel happiest? Write about the things in life that make you feel happy!

#300. Imagine there is no gravity. What kind of things would you do you for fun? How would some of the things you already do for fun be different?

Buy the Printable Cards!  We will always have this list of 300 kids writing prompts available for free, but I’m very excited to now also offer an  ad-free printable version of these prompts  in my online Etsy shop. Thank you for your support!

Parents and teachers, I hope you enjoyed these 300 writing prompts for kids and that you will use them to inspire your children’s creative imaginations.

These prompts of course can be used in a number of different ways and can be adapted for a variety of different styles of writing !

What do you think? Do you think these are good conversation and story starters for kids? Do you have any ideas for writing prompts you would like to share?

And of course, if you’d like to make it super fun and easy to use these prompts at home or in your classroom, be sure to get our ad-free printable version of these kids writing prompt cards now available in my Etsy shop.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on different creative writing ideas and topics for kids to write about! Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Chelle Stein wrote her first embarrassingly bad novel at the age of 14 and hasn't stopped writing since. As the founder of ThinkWritten, she enjoys encouraging writers and creatives of all types.

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60 Picture Writing Prompts for Kids to Spark Their Imaginations

By: Author Valerie Forgeard

Posted on August 30, 2022

Categories Creativity , Art , Education , Inspiration , Writing

Writing prompts with pictures is a fun way to stimulate kids’ creativity and can be used in many different situations. For example, you can use them in the classroom to practice your students’ writing skills and develop their storytelling skills. You can also use them at home to stimulate your children’s imagination and spark their interest in reading and writing.

60 Picture Writing Prompts for Kids

Picture writing prompts are a great way to help kids write and can also be an opportunity for kids to find their own voice. They can help students expand their vocabulary and write more meaningful sentences.

A picture writing prompt allows students to express their ideas while learning a new word and improving their creative writing skills.

Here are 60 pictures examples organized by category that can serve as starting points for great writing prompts:

  • A picture of a person
  • A picture of a mother and her child
  • A picture of a crowd of people
  • A picture of a superhero
  • A picture of an actor or actress
  • A picture of a person hugging another person

There are many reasons why using pictures of people is a good idea for a creative writing prompt for children.

One of the main reasons is that it helps them imagine the story, which can help them figure out how it should go.

Another reason is that it’s easier for readers to put themselves in the story because they’ve someone in front of them who looks like them and understands their situation.

Here are some questions you can ask children when using people as visual writing prompts:

  • What do you think about the person in this picture?
  • What’s the person feeling?
  • What do you think is going on here?
  • Why do you think she’s dressed like that?
  • What would happen if she did something different?
  • What do you think he or she’s thinking about?
  • What’re the two people doing in the distance?
  • What words would you use to describe how the characters are feeling?
  • What probably happened just before this picture was taken?
  • A picture of a building, such as a house or a school
  • A picture of a city
  • A picture of a tree
  • A picture of a forest
  • A picture of a beach
  • A picture of the moon
  • A picture of space or planet

Pictures of places are a great way to inspire your kids to write. It helps them see what a place looks like from different angles and builds their vocabulary.

Here are some examples of questions you can ask kids after you show them a picture:

  • Describe the place you’re in.
  • Describe what you see when you look out the window of your house.
  • Where do you like to go on vacation? Why is that your favorite place?
  • Write about a place that reminds you of home.
  • Describe a place you visited that wasn’t ideal for some reason (e.g., it was too hot or too cold). How did you feel when you were there? Did anything good come out of the trip for you?
  • Describe a place where people gather regularly (e.g., church or school). What do people do there? What feelings do they’ve when they’re there?
  • Describe a place you’d like to visit, even if it’s an imaginary place, and explain why you’d like to visit it.
  • Where do you think this photo was taken?
  • A picture of clouds
  • A picture of the sun
  • A picture of a rainbow
  • A picture of the sun rising above the horizon, turning everything golden and orange as it rises into the sky above us
  • A picture of a storm
  • A picture of a clear blue sky

Landscapes can be used as creative writing prompts for children because they’re a great way to get children thinking about the world around them.

The following questions will help them write using pictures of landscapes:

  • Describe the weather in your town today.
  • Describe a landscape you saw that made you happy.
  • Describe a landscape you saw that made you sad and why.
  • Describe a time when you felt like you were the only person in the world who’d a certain feeling.
  • A picture of a fruit
  • A picture of a pizza
  • A picture of a hamburger
  • A picture of an apple pie
  • A picture of a birthday cake

Pictures of delicious food can be used as inspiration for creative writing – they can encourage the child to write about what they’ve seen or help them describe something in more detail than words alone.

For example:

  • What do you think is the most delicious food and why?
  • Describe the best thing you’ve ever eaten.
  • What’s your least favorite food and why?
  • Describe your favorite restaurant
  • Write a story about what happens when you don’t get your favorite food
  • A picture of a bird
  • A picture of a butterfly
  • A picture of a bee
  • A picture of an elephant
  • A picture of a horse
  • A picture of a bear
  • A picture of an octopus
  • A picture of a whale
  • A picture of a hippopotamus
  • A picture of a crocodile
  • A picture of a pet

Using pictures of animals as narrative writing prompts is a great way to get children excited about writing.

Animals are subjects that children know well and can relate to. Therefore, they’re likely to have some ideas about what the animal in a simple picture might be doing.

Here are some examples of questions that can be answered with animal pictures:

  • What do you think this animal is thinking?
  • What’s the young elephant saying to the older elephant?
  • What would you say to this animal if you were talking to it?
  • What does this animal remind you of?
  • What would you do if you were an animal and saw another animal that looked like you?
  • What’s your favorite animal and why?
  • If you were an animal, which animal would you be? And why?
  • Why is the dog sitting on a chair wearing sunglasses?
  • Where does the horse go, and where does it come from?

Transportation

  • A picture of a plane
  • A picture of a car
  • A picture of a bus
  • A picture of a train
  • A picture of a boat

If you ask your students to write about their favorite vehicle, they can describe it in detail and tell you why they like it.

And the best part? It doesn’t have to be a car or a truck – you can also ask them what plane or train they’d like to ride on or what boat they’d like best.

They can also tell you why they chose a particular mode of transportation, which helps build their critical thinking skills. Here are some examples of questions you could ask them:

  • Where would you go if you could drive this vehicle anywhere? Why this place?
  • If you could’ve any vehicle for your next big trip, which would it be and why?
  • If you could choose to be any vehicle, which would it be and why?
  • A picture from a soccer game
  • A picture from a swimming competition
  • A picture of a horse race
  • A picture of people playing tennis
  • A picture of a baseball team
  • A picture of a yoga master
  • A picture of a martial arts competition

Sports are a great way to get kids to write. A picture prompt of a sport gives them a stimulus, and then they can answer questions about what they see in the picture. This method can be used at any age level but works especially well with elementary school children just learning to write.

For example, you might ask your student:

  • What’s your favorite sport? And why?
  • If you could be an athlete, what would it be and why?
  • What do you like best about sports?
  • What do you think makes a good athlete?
  • Write a story in 10 sentences about what’s in the picture
  • What’ll happen when they compete in this game?
  • A picture of a pen or pencil
  • A picture of a notebook
  • A picture of a glass cup with water in it
  • A picture of an object that belongs to your culture, like an American flag or a Japanese tea set

Writing prompts are great for any type of story, but they’re especially helpful if your children don’t know what to write about.

By giving them an image or object to start with, they steer their thoughts in new directions and help them turn an idea that might be boring into something more exciting.

Here are some examples of questions you can ask:

  • What’s it?
  • What or who does it remind you of and why?
  • How does it feel when you touch or hold it?
  • What would you do with this object if it belonged to you?
  • A picture of something made up, like a cartoon character, a unicorn (or both!)
  • A picture that looks like a painting or drawing someone made
  • A picture of a singer or band
  • A picture from a movie
  • A picture of someone dancing
  • An abstract picture
  • An action photo (like someone jumping in the air)
  • A close-up of something small (like a flower or plant)

The Topic of Art Is a Great Way to Get Kids to Writing

When you talk about art, it’s important to be specific. You want kids to be able to identify the things that make up the artwork and also talk about how those things are arranged or used.

Here are some examples of questions you can ask them to inspire them:

  • What’s this artwork about?
  • How does it make you feel?
  • What would you add to the artwork? Take away from it? Change it?
  • What’s the artist trying to say/how is he saying it?

How Do You Go About Using a Simple Photo to Structure Your Writing?

I think using a simple picture template is important to get kids to structure their text. It’s too easy for them to go astray and not remember what they were trying to say. With a photo, however, they’ve something concrete to focus on and align their words with.

A photograph can be a good way for children to write about an interesting topic or idea they might otherwise have difficulty putting into words.

For example, if a child was sad because their cat died last week, it would be hard to write about how they felt without distraction from other things – for example, a trip they took with the family when they were younger or something someone said at school yesterday. But if you give them a prompt like “Write about your best friend who died last week” (or something similar), suddenly it all makes sense! And you know what? You need to write about your best friend who died last week! Isn’t that fun?

Put the Student in the Right Position to Write

One of the most important things you can do as a teacher is to get your students to write. This can be one of the most difficult tasks, but it’s also one of the most important.

The More Comfortable and Relaxed Your Students Feel About Writing, the Better Their Work Will Be

Here are some creative ideas on how to get your student in the right mood:

  • Go outside and sit in a circle under a tree (if you’re noisy). The gentle swaying of the leaves will help your student relax and focus on writing.
  • Play classical music in the background while they write – this keeps distractions away and still keeps them focused on what they need to do.
  • Have students close their eyes and breathe deeply for 5 minutes before they start writing. This helps them relax, focus, and prepare for what’s ahead!

The More Practice They Have at Writing, the Better They’ll Get at It

Writing prompts in the form of pictures is a great way to encourage children to write. The more they practice writing, the better they get at it.

If you’re looking for ideas for writing prompts with pictures for kids, here are some tips:

  • Choose a topic that interests kids and make sure it’s age-appropriate. For example, if you’ve young children, you can choose “my favorite toy” or “my favorite place.” If you have older students, you can choose topics like “My first day of school” or “My dream vacation,” etc.
  • Choose an interesting picture of what you want them to write about! This can be a real photo or drawing (you can find this on the Internet) or a painting or drawing of the children themselves! The picture must fit well with what the children will write about. Otherwise, there’s no point!
  • Give the children time to think about what they want to write about (this can be 10 minutes or more, depending on how old they’re). Then let them start writing! They may not know where to start because they could say so many things about their topic.

Story Picture Prompts Always Work With Children

For story starters, a simple picture can significantly stimulate children’s imagination and inspiration and improve their writing skills. One idea always gives rise to new ideas.

A Picture Can Tell a Long or Short Story

That’s why writing prompts with pictures are great for kids in 1st grade or 2nd grade, or 5th grade and up. It’s just a matter of choosing the right picture writing prompt.

Picture writing prompts for kids are great because they help them express themselves in a way they can understand. They also have the opportunity to express themselves in a way other than talking while boosting their creative juices. They can use their hands to show what they’re feeling and thinking. This makes it easier for them to express themselves without thinking about what they’re saying or how it sounds.

Creative writing prompts can also help children learn other languages by using pictures to communicate with others who’re not fluent in English. This helps the child learn about other cultures and become more comfortable communicating with people who speak differently than they do.

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  • Writing Prompts

300+ Writing Prompts for Kids (+ Free Printable)

This is the ultimate bank of over 300 writing prompts for kids. From creative writing prompts to journal ideas and even quick poetry prompts . Whenever you’re bored or need a little inspiration, here are some fun ideas for kids writing prompts that can be used over and over again.

This list of creative writing prompts for kids includes a mixture of writing exercises, short story ideas, creative prompts and image prompts . All perfect for beating writer’s block and even for helping you write a whole story . If this list is too difficult to read through, you can use the writing prompts generator below to get some quick random ideas. And there’s even a free PDF version of this post available right at the end of this list – Just keep on reading!

Random Writing Prompts Generator

We put some of our favourite writing prompts in a video for quick viewing:

Over 300 Writing Prompts for Kids

  • “Ready or not, here I come!” shouted Millie in the distance.
  • 2 million years ago, one curious caveman makes an interesting discovery, which takes him to a city in the year 2020. Here’s a video for more inspiration on this prompt.
  • A box is delivered to your house. You open it and find…What’s inside the box? Continue this story.
  • A girl at your school has been hiding her true identity for years. Until one day it’s revealed that she is an alien from outer space with mysterious powers.
  • A group of young puppies are separated at birth. One of them becomes a circus performer. The other, a well-pampered house pet and the final one a stray dog.
  • A kind princess gets locked in a tower which once belonged to a powerful wizard. Instead of waiting for a prince or knight to save her, she creates her own spells to get out. Soon the spells start taking over and turn her into an evil witch.
  • A man obsessed with comic books starts thinking that he is actually a supervillain from one of his favourite comic books. And now he is plotting world domination.
  • A mastermind supervillain is tired of people always booing him and wishing him to disappear. He decides to become a good guy or a superhero and tries to get people to like him.
  • A monkey at the zoo wants to run away from the zoo to join a circus.
  • A mouse believes that he can talk to cheese. The other mice think he’s crazy – but is he?
  • A new magic shop has just opened in town. You decide to get your brother a magic playset for his birthday from this shop. Instead of just playful magic, the magic set turns your brother into a warlock capable of turning humans into frogs and more
  • A physics professor at a top university creates a gadget that can turn back time. He starts using it for his own personal gain, such as winning the lottery. Then he realises that he has created multiple timelines, where multiple versions of himself have been created.
  • A superhero who catches the bad guy, but actually helps the “real” bad guy escape.
  • A vegetarian shark explains how he feels like an outsider and doesn’t fit in anywhere. 
  • A witch kidnaps you and locks you up in a tower. How will you escape? Why have you been kidnapped?
  • A young Prince has locked himself in his castle to avoid eye contact with any human person. One look could turn them to stone.
  • A young witch turns her three older sisters into dolls and plays with them every day. How will the three older witches become real again?
  • A zombie who wants to become a vegetarian.
  • After 30 years in prison, the big bad wolf is finally out. Write a short story about the big bad wolf’s life after prison. You can watch this video for further inspiration and clues.
  • After a thunderstorm, you find a mysterious egg in your backyard. It starts to hatch and out comes a baby dragon! What do you do next? For help take a look at our dragon invasion video prompt .
  • After eating a strange-looking vegetable, your pet bunny becomes a disgusting zombie bunny.
  • After reading a magical book, you gain some magical powers. However, it turns out that you always had these magical abilities inside of you.
  • After the accident, Nelson never felt safe again.
  • Aliens are coming to invade Earth! Send them a letter to convince them to stop invading Earth.
  • All humans eventually get a superpower. However, David is the only kid at school with no superpowers at all.
  • All your life you knew your best friend. But one day you find out that your real best friend passed away years ago and was replaced by a robot.
  • An adventurer discovers a glowing cube inside a dark cave in South America. But when they try to leave the cave, the cube summons a secret league of assassins.
  • An everyday boy walks up from a coma to discover the world has been taken over by aliens – But is this all a dream?
  • An evil conman (or any other type of villain) turns out to be your hero’s only saviour.
  • An expedition in the Amazon rainforest gets deadly when you and your team encounter a group of warriors protecting the rainforest from outsiders.
  • Another tea party, another game.
  • Blinded by a bright light outside his window, Jake jumped up in horror.
  • Bridget has been best friends with Charlie since elementary school. Everything changes when a new girl Chrissy becomes Charlie’s other best friend.
  • Can you help Freddie the ninja cat write up a game plan to rescue his best friend and save the day? Here’s a video for more inspiration on this prompt.
  • Can you write a how-to guide on how to make friends at a new school? Watch this video prompt for more inspiration.
  • Can you write a short fantasy story about a strange key that opens up portals to new worlds? Here is a video to help you out with this creative prompt.
  • Can you write a short story about a group of forest animals working together to save their home from deforestation? You can watch this video to inspire you further with this prompt.
  • Can you write down at least 10 ways to show love to someone you care about, such as friends and family? You can use this video to help you out with this prompt.
  • Describe the city of the future. In 100 years time, what will the world look like?
  • Do you have a favourite magazine that you read? Write a letter to your favourite publication telling them how good their recent issue was.
  • During a family camping trip, you find a backpack containing a strange-looking map, compass and a solid gold snake ring. What do you do next
  • During the night, your house gets robbed. Now you’re on a mission to find the stolen items and punish the robber.
  • Every night the same whispers. Every night the same cries. Who could this be and what do they want?
  • Everything he touches turns to bananas that must be the worst superpower ever. When will it ever come in handy?
  • Everything will be automated in the future. Humans won’t even need to walk or get up. The robots can do that for them. In fact, humans don’t do anything, apart from just exist in the world. This gives aliens from a nearby planet, the perfect opportunity to invade and take over planet Earth (see our planet name generator for more inspiration).
  • Finish this sentence: For lunch today, I…
  • Finish this sentence: If I could change one thing about myself, it would be…
  • For years you have had breathing problems and suffered from asthma. You also had an extreme phobia of the ocean and deep water. Then one day, someone from your school invites you to a beach party. At the party, you learn that you’re a mermaid.
  • For years you have played the role of a good superhero. Always saving lives and watching the people you love disappear. Now you had enough, it’s time to be the bad guy, it’s time to play the villain.
  • Gavin was always getting the best presents. For once I wish I could be like him.
  • Having a superpower was cool until Mindy started losing control of her power. It was like the darkness was taking over her whole body. She is now a danger to everyone, including herself.
  • How was the very first superhuman or human with superpowers created?
  • If dogs could speak, then Spike would be thanking Chris right now.
  • Imagine if animals could write. Choose an animal of your choice and write a letter to them.
  • Imagine that you are a fork. What would your life be like as a fork that humans use for eating with? As a talking fork, what would you say?
  • In a futuristic world, humans are fighting against robots to keep their race alive. However, it turns out that everyone is a robot anyway and the true human race died out years ago.
  • In a war between humans and aliens, you lose your best friend. However, he/she is really alive and working with the aliens.
  • In the damp streets of Manhattan, there lived a fierce little cat.
  • In the story of Hansel and Gretal, write from the perspective of the witch that lives in the Gingerbread house. 
  • Is your family wealthy or short on money? Money can be a strong motivator and a source of conflict for many people. How does money make you feel?
  • It’s ‘Bring a Parent to School Day’. But your main character’s parents are so busy that they can’t make it, so they bring their much older brother to school instead.
  • It’s the 1930s and you are making your first debut as a circus clown. However, on the first night of the circus opening, things end very badly.
  • It’s the annual snail racing championships. Pretend that you are a commentator for a snail race.
  • It’s the year 2070 and crime is at an all-time high. To combat crime, one town has completely replaced its police officers with robot officers. However, the robot police officers malfunction and start thinking that all humans are criminals.
  • Legend says that if you breathe in and out ten times in front of a mirror something strange happens.
  • Life is good, life is perfect until you realise everything is a hologram and the real world is a dark and broken place.
  • Life wasn’t great at all for Mr Pea. It wasn’t even mildly good.
  • Loneliness is a strong emotion. Write about a time when you felt alone and what did you do to cheer yourself up.
  • Look through some old family photos and pick one at random. Use this photo as inspiration for your next story.
  • Make a bucket list of all the places you want to visit.
  • Meeting a group of talking monkeys in the jungle.
  • Mother has always warned me about not eating too much cheese before bedtime and now I know why! Cheese makes your nightmares come true!
  • On her 13th birthday, Cassie was cursed to never speak again. She was such a loud, outgoing girl, now she’s almost invisible.
  • One day, you notice that cats keep following you home from school. You eventually find out that you’re slowly turning into a cat yourself. How will you stop this from happening?
  • People ran inside their homes, as the alarm rang.
  • Pick a fairytale character of your choice and write a letter to them.
  • Pick an inspirational quote and design a whole page around it in your journal.
  • Robbie the robin thinks that he is the best singer in the world. But all the other birds think he sounds like a broken flute.
  • Sitting alone in the dark, Jesse feared the outside world. She just wants to be alone.
  • Sitting at his computer, Martin noticed something odd about his favourite computer game.
  • Some say the number 7 is unlucky, but to me, it wasn’t.
  • Superman, Wonder Woman, Captain America, Spiderman – Whoever your favourite superhero is, write an imaginary letter to them.
  • Tabitha the house cat knows there’s a mouse hiding in the kitchen. Write a monologue scene of Tabitha dreaming about catching the mouse.
  • Talk about the struggles of being the most popular girl or boy in school. Think about the peer pressure you face daily.
  • The desert-like sun burned his skin as he lay scorching in the sand.
  • The room was a dump, as Jack frantically searched every corner.
  • The same words over and over again scattered all over the floor.
  • The sun shone brightly on the Oakland farm, but not all was bright.
  • The world’s longest game of tic-tac-toe – For some reason, it just never seems to end.
  • There’s an old ancient belief that the ocean is alive. When pirates pollute it with rubbish and hurt the sea creatures it makes the ocean angry. Write a short story from the perspective of the ocean.
  • Think about a difficult decision you had to make recently. For example, did you have to choose between going to your best friend’s birthday party or visiting your dad in another country?
  • Think about how your self-image has changed over the past few years. Has your confidence grown or withered away? Use this as your inspiration for your next short story.
  • Think about the first time you met your friend. Write a letter to them reminding them of this time.
  • Think about the funniest thing that happened in your life and use it as an inspiration for your next short story.
  • This Halloween you decide to go as a simple ghost. What you didn’t realise is that by wearing the costume, you actually became a ghost. And your best friend dressed up as a vampire, is now actually a vampire!
  • Thomas Saint designed the first-ever sewing machine. Write a story from the perspective of Thomas and how he came up with the idea.
  • Three brothers are fighting with each other to be the next king of their kingdom – who will win?
  • Tick… tock… tick… tock… time was going so slow.
  • To make some extra money on the side, a farmer decides to open a knock-off version of Disneyland.
  • Weather is a common theme in poems. Pick any weather of your choice, such as rain, snow, a sunny day and then write a poem about it.
  • What do you think the world will be like in 10, 50 or even 100 years time?
  • What hobby do you enjoy the most and how did you get into it?
  • Write a biography of your life, as the child of an infamous pirate living out at sea. You can view this video for more inspiration.
  • Write a day in the life story of a talking ice-cream family. You can watch this video prompt for further inspiration.
  • Write a fairytale about a young prince cursed with the power of darkness. Take a look at this video for more inspiration.
  • Write a letter to a company that you want to work for in the future. Tell them why you would make a good worker and why they should hire you.
  • Write a letter to cheer someone up who is sad. You could include a funny story or joke in this letter.
  • Write a letter to your favourite celebrity.
  • Write a script of a conversation between you and a talking tree. You can view this video for more inspiration.
  • Write a short story about a dog travelling across America to find his mother.
  • Write a short story about being turned into a rat. You can use the clues and questions in this video to help you with your story.
  • Write a short story about the life of being a husky dog working in Alaska to help pull equipment and people around in the snowy landscape.
  • Write a short story titled, Raining Doughnuts. You can use the information in this video to help you out with this prompt.
  • Write a story about a young boy or girl, who leaves their home to find that everyone is gone. Their friends, family, neighbours, pets – Everyone is gone. Watch this video prompt for more inspiration.
  • Write a story dedicated to the best teacher or mentor you ever had so far in your life.
  • Write about a nightmare you recently had.
  • Write about a recent achievement or goal you accomplished. 
  • Write at least 7 journal entries about being lost on a deserted island . You can use this video prompt to help you out.
  • Write out a simple storyline for a new video game. Think about the year your game will be set in, who the enemies will be and how the game will start and end? Watch this video for more clues on what to include in your video game.
  • You and your friends finally find the courage to enter the haunted house in your neighbourhood. But what exactly lurks inside the house?
  • You are a master chef at a top restaurant. To keep the restaurant going, you need to come up with a new recipe or dish to include on the menu. Can you invent a new dish or menu item? Watch this video for more inspiration.
  • You are going to visit your grandma. It’s a two-hour car drive to get and the traffic is extra busy today. While stuck in the traffic you have some funny, yet strange encounters with other drivers.
  • You are researching your family tree for a school project. You thought your family was small until you stumbled upon some old family photos All those aunts, uncles, cousins that you never saw your whole life. Why keep them a secret?
  • You are the best dark assassin in the kingdom. The king’s son has hired you to kill the king in secret. What do you do?
  • You are the most famous superhero of all time. But what you don’t know is that your father is actually a supervillain which you’ll have to take down.
  • You become the very first superhuman in the whole world after discovering that you can move objects with just your mind. You decide to keep it a secret and only ever use it when you’re really desperate. But this all changes one day
  • You finally solve a Rubix cube to get trapped inside a life-size cube. Where you have to solve many cube-like puzzles to get released.
  • You get an unknown phone call from someone. The person tells you that someone will knock at your door very soon and that you should not open it. You hear a knock at the door – What do you do?
  • You just landed on a new planet. Describe this new planet to the other people on your spaceship. Watch this video for some clues and ideas to help you with this prompt.
  • You’re the son of a mad scientist who rides a snail to school every day.
  • You’re leaving a long adventure and you don’t know when you’ll be back. Write a goodbye letter to your loved ones and friends.
  • Your best friend and you sneak into the school cafeteria after school to steal some food. But as soon as you open the door you hear the dinner ladies chanting some spell over something that looks like a smoking cauldron.
  • Your long, lost sister who you thought was dead knocks at your door.
  • Your main character is a poor farmer’s boy. One day his fortune turns around when he finds a magician’s spellbook deep in the forest.
  • Your main character is a street thief and a shapeshifter. They can change into any human or animal. As the lowest ranking member of society, your main character is tired of being treated like dirt, so they decide to impersonate the king and take over the kingdom.
  • Your main character is a werewolf hunter, but it turns out that he himself is a werewolf.
  • Your main character is plotting the greatest revenge in history in their own mind.
  • Your best friend died years ago and was replaced by a cyborg. And you only just found out recently.
  • After going through some old stuff in the attic, you learn that your great grandfather was a war hero.
  • Earth’s weather system has dramatically changed in the future. Now the weather forecast talks about balls of fire falling from the sky and tornadoes made of water flooding random towns.
  • Everyone looked up to Lava Knight until he accidentally hurt someone with his superpowers. Now all humans are protesting against superheroes. They demand that all superheroes are stripped off their superpowers.
  • On your 12th birthday, you’ll be old enough to join any of the four clans: Steel Warriors, Earth Souls, The Healers or the Wise Ones. But a secret group living underground called the Dark Assassins want to recruit you. What will happen next? (If you like cats and warriors, take a look at the Imagine Forest Warrior Cat name generator .)
  • Your character has a big confession to make to the world.
  • Your family is hiding a big, dark secret and they’ll do anything to keep it a secret from your other relatives.
  • Alone sitting at a dinner party fit for 20 people, the main character explains how they lost it all for nothing.
  • Have you ever felt pressured to do something? Write about this peer pressure from the perspective of your future self in 5 years time.
  • Write a short story from the perspective of an alien living on Mars. You can use the following sentence as inspiration, “Humans are real! We are not alone! Humans are real” Chanted the crowd.
  • Every year your family goes on a family vacation. But this year, the annual family vacation has been cancelled.
  • “Master Jewel Thief Caught And Locked Up!” – That’s what the newspaper headline read on Saturday morning. It’s now Wednesday morning and another diamond robbery took place last night.
  • During a cruise ship holiday, the ship starts sinking. You end up stranded on an island, where you have to survive until someone rescues you.
  • You and your best friend find a beautiful sports car parked outside your home. The keys are inside and the door has been left open.
  • Write a short story about a mad scientist who has found a way to combine human DNA with animal DNA to create superhumans.
  • As an orphan child, Cassie always felt alone. Until she joined an art club and met her two best friends, Edwin and Miranda. Now she found a family that she never thought she’ll have.
  • Each snowflake is unique and delicate. With only a few seconds before you melt, write a short monologue from the perspective of a snowflake falling from the sky.
  • A cure for a rare disease mutates humans into flesh-eating zombies.
  • Who raised you the most when growing up? What lessons did they teach you? How do they inspire you?
  • There are many benefits to being a middle child. You don’t have the responsibility of being the eldest and you aren’t treated like a baby like the youngest. But still, you always feel misunderstood by your family and are always on the outside.
  • Earth was created as a prison for all badly behaved humans. And now that the prison sentence is over, everyone can finally go home to their real planet.
  • Your main character follows a street cat and ends up in a world where cats rule the planet and humans are their pets.
  • The lights turn off, as your master goes to sleep. One dog sits by the bed of his master – What is he wondering about?
  • You find an old pen in a magic shop. Every time you write something down using that pen it becomes true.
  • A hard-working lawyer decides to leave the city life behind to start a new life in the country. As he ventures off to the country he realises that country life is not as calm or as relaxing as he thought it would be.
  • Your main character is a spy in the year 1570. They have been hired to protect the queen from a secret league of assassins.
  • It’s the year 2135, every household has their own robot servant. After years of learning from human behaviour, the robot servants develop a mind of their own and start to attack humans.
  • For two whole years, you thought Catelyn was your best friend. So many secrets shared. So many moments shared. But she was just a fake friend – She was never there when you really needed her.
  • One by one students from your class are going missing. It’s up to you to find out what happened to them.
  • Everyone thinks that you’re this big, tough guy, but really you’re struggling on the inside. In a monologue, talk about your struggles and the judgement, you face every day.
  • Write about something that brings you great joy in your life.
  • Jerome the chameleon hates people staring at him, so he always camouflages. One day he sees a human and wants her to adopt him. But she never sees him. From that moment, Jerome doesn’t want to hide away anymore.
  • It’s the 1930s and you are making your first debut as a circus clown. However on the first night of the circus opening things end very badly.
  • Sarah can move objects with her mind, but her power is super weak. Until she connects with a group of girls from another high school. Together their bond forms the greatest power that anyone has seen.
  • In the future, there has been a serious drop in the human population. After viruses, war and human nature have killed the majority of Earth’s population. Now humans are considered an endangered species.
  • How was the first-ever newspaper or media company started? Your main character in this story is the first-ever reporter.
  • Your little sister is always bugging you to play with her dolls, but you’re too old to play with dolls. Until one day you actually become a doll. Your parents think you ran away, but really you are in your sister’s bedroom on a shelf with all the other dolls.
  • After years of horrific weather conditions and natural disasters, humans have learned to adapt to the various environmental changes.
  • Not everything is rainbows and cotton candy on the planet of unicorns. Something deadly lurks underground.
  • On a bus ride to an important college interview, your character goes through many self-doubts.
  • An alpha wolf is kicked out of his pack for playing around with humans. Will he ever become alpha again?
  • It has always been you and you mom. Until one day your mom introduces you to a lady and tells you that they are getting married.
  • Mysterious symbols are appearing all over town. It is up to your main character to decipher the code and find out the meaning of these symbols.
  • It’s the year 2,075 and scientists have discovered a way to make humans immortal. But only the rich and important people are offered this treatment.
  • Write a monologue scene from the point of view of one of the ugly step-sisters in Cinderella. The scene can be set right after Cinderella’s wedding.
  • During a football game, the ball falls into the forest behind your school. When you go to find the ball, you discover small fairy-like creatures in the forest. No-one believes you when you try telling them, but you know the truth.
  • Your main character hasn’t seen their father in over 10 years. Suddenly out of the blue their father turns up asking for a place to stay.
  • For centuries humans have evolved. From apes to modern-day men and women. This evolution has not stopped. In the year, 2200, some humans have special abilities or superpowers, such as mind-reading powers or the ability to fly. This has caused great destruction on Earth.
  • After a huge argument, you learn your parents are getting a divorce. Your mom wants you to stay with her, while your dad wants you to come with him. What will you do?
  • Write a short story about a magpie with a stealing problem. No matter what this magpie does he/she just can’t help stealing shiny things.
  • Dragons are at war with humans. While foraging for food near the mountains you find a small ice dragon that helps hunt for food. Together you end the war between dragons and humans.
  • Scientists invent a teleportation machine which allows people to travel all over the world within a few seconds. However, the machine goes bust and starts sending people into different dimensions.
  • Complete the following story starter: The music stops, everyone turns around and they see…
  • After the death of your uncle, you inherit his magical sword. When held in a fighting position, the sword turns you into a legendary superhero, called the crimson knight.
  • A family camping trip gets dangerous when a pack of wolves start circling your tents in the middle of the night.
  • Cats and dogs rule the world and humans are their pets.
  • Little Red Riding meets the wolf in the forest. Instead of being scared of him, they become close friends.
  • It’s Halloween night and you just finished carving a pumpkin with your parents. Later that night when you are alone in the house, the pumpkins start talking to you with the mouth you carved on them.
  • After years of getting all the attention from your parents. Your parents bring home a baby boy and now it seems like no-one even notices you anymore. It’s all about your baby brother now.
  • Known as the Floral Slayer, there is a serial killer on the loose. They are going around town destroying all flowers in public places, people’s gardens and front yards. Why are they doing this and who can stop them?
  • When the world is about to end, a superhero and supervillain must work together to save it.
  • A poem dedicated to your mother.
  • Going to Paris on holiday.
  • Dedication poem to your favourite celebrity.
  • The creepy shadows in your room remind you of… 
  • What is life like on a fluffy white cloud?
  • Being on stage with everyone looking at you.
  • Can you think of some common stereotypes that people have of women? Why are these stereotypes wrong? For example, some people think women should stay at home and not work – do you agree or disagree with this statement?
  • Think about something your mom is always saying and write down how you can help out.
  • You’re on the beach collecting seashells. You then hear a calm whisper from one of the seashells. It whispers, “Come, find me…” What do you do next?
  • We all heard the legend of mermaids and the loch ness monster. But can you write your own legend about a mysterious sea creature? 
  • Write a limerick about the summer sun.
  • Write one journal entry into your nature journal about the great outdoors. 
  • Your favourite celebrity is about to give a talk on violence against pets. Can you help them by writing a powerful speech for their talk?
  • Your new pet dog has superpowers! Create a comic strip about this super dog’s adventures. Who’s the villain? What are its powers?
  • Write a short story which must include the following items: Vanilla Ice-Cream, Jam Sandwiches and a monkey. 
  • You are the manager of your favourite football team. Create a game plan on how they can win their next game.
  • Crystal was one of the most powerful witches of all-time. She defeated many evil warlocks and villains. But now she’s locked up in a mental institution. Is she really a witch or is she just crazy?
  • After reading a forbidden book, the most horrific and disgusting creatures from hell crossover to Earth.
  • A boy helps out an old lady, in return, he is given magical powers. Instead of using his powers for good, he uses it to destroy the world.
  • Scientists accidentally create a vaccine which gives humans super strength, along with other traits.
  • A hurricane destroyed a whole city. Write a story about a search and rescue dog.
  • You find out that your cat is actually the king of a secret kingdom of cats.

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  • Write a short story including the following elements: An elephant, a balloon, pyjamas and a watermelon.

pictures for creative writing for kids

  • How do rabbits celebrate a holiday like Easter?

pictures for creative writing for kids

  • Complete the following story starter: The moon’s light reflected on the ocean. Maisie sat with her toes deep in the sand, thinking about her future. What would happen next? Now that everyone knows her secret.
  • Complete the following story starter: Soon I will be powerful enough to beat them all!
  • Write a story including the following elements: A lobster, two pairs of socks and a party balloon.
  • Use a good memory from your life as inspiration for your next story.
  • Use a bad memory from your life as inspiration for your next story.
  • Complete the following story starter: The nightmares never ended for Clara.
  • Write a story including the following elements: Your favourite celebrity, a hobby you enjoy doing and your dream holiday destination.
  • Rewrite your favourite fairytale .
  • Rewrite the lyrics of your favourite song. But this time make it all about food!
  • Write a scary story about an evil prince who collects bugs.
  • Write a short biography of a beautiful lady who ages 10 years in one day.
  • Describe to your friend a brainy rockstar who hates school.
  • Describe a day in the life of an old owl who tries to get into the Guinness Book of World.
  • Write a rhyming story about an old movie star who collects bugs.
  • Make up a conversation you might have with a nerdy alien who lives on a faraway planet.
  • Describe the personality of a self-conscious fox who wants to win a dance contest.
  • Write a short biography of an evil dragon who won a million pounds.
  • Write a funny story about an ugly knight who tries to get into the Guinness Book of World.
  • Make up a conversation you might have with a self-conscious ogre who discovers they have superpowers.
  • Write a travel log for a devious dentist who is lost on an island.
  • Describe the appearance of a smelly alien who gets lost in the Amazon rainforest.
  • Write a detective story about a million-year-old zombie who is always getting into trouble with their parents.
  • Describe to your friend a devious pirate who discovers a talking frog.
  • Write a rhyming story about a smelly prince who has to save the world.
  • Describe a very unusual day for a nerdy witch who has to save the world.
  • Write a scary story about a million-year-old cat who ages 10 years in one day.
  • Write a scary story about a nerdy rockstar who is lost on an island.
  • Write a travel log for a devious dog who rides a giant snail to school.
  • Write a story including the following elements: A magical pencil, a dog and a mischievous eraser.
  • Complete the following story starter: Darren sat on the bus watching the rain pour down.

Free 150 Writing Prompts For Kids PDF

Now it times to Download your free printable writing prompts for kids PDF ! This printable pdf contains 150 writing prompts for kids, which you can print-out and use as inspiration for your next story! For more fun writing prompts, take a look at our dedicated writing prompts section .

Writing prompts for kids pdf printable

This collection of writing prompts for kids are great for both young writers and experienced writers. We guarantee that you’ll feel more inspired and ready to beat writer’s block with these creative writing prompts. Share your writing prompts and tips in the comments below.

Writing Prompts for Kids by imagine forest

Marty the wizard is the master of Imagine Forest. When he's not reading a ton of books or writing some of his own tales, he loves to be surrounded by the magical creatures that live in Imagine Forest. While living in his tree house he has devoted his time to helping children around the world with their writing skills and creativity.

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The Write Practice

100+ Fun Creative Writing Prompts for Kids (and Kids at Heart!)

by Sue Weems | 0 comments

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One of the best ways you can foster a love of reading and writing in children is to offer lots of low-stakes opportunities to practice. These writing prompts can be used with any group of kids you're working with: elementary school, middle school, or high school writers.

kids writing prompts

Prompts can help kids break through creative writing idea blocks or boredom. Whether in a slump or starting a new project, try a prompt a day and see what happens.

Keep it as simple as possible: one notebook or document, one location, the same(-ish) time each day, and a timer set for 5, 10, or 15 minutes.

Don’t let yourself edit, reread, or rework anything. Just write. Keep the pen moving across the page. There’s no wrong way to play.

Plus, there's a great note for you, whether you're a parent or teacher or both, at the end.

Give these fun creative writing prompts a try and watch how consistent practice contributes to ideas, confidence, and yes, even stronger writing skills !

20 Journal Writing Prompts

Journal prompts are fun writing prompts that are great for recording your everyday life. It's like taking a snapshot. It's fun to look back in a month, a season, or a year to see how you've grown or changed.

One additional thought that is important to keep in mind when writing a journal writing prompt is that it encourages kids to explore answers beyond one word or sentence. The best way to get them to write more is to ask why  they answered a prompt the way they did.

Asking the question why not only encourages children to consider their beliefs, wants, and values, but also pushes them to really explore their voice through creative writing ideas .

Recommended time for each: 5-7 minutes

1. What is your earliest memory? Describe this memory.

2. What is the best part of your week and why?

3. What is your favorite thing to do after school? Why?

4. What is (or was) your favorite toy? Why?

5. Describe your favorite animal or pet. Why is this your favorite? (Fun variation: Describe your favorite pet or animal's perspective of you.)

6. Describe your typical morning as if you are your bathroom mirror or a door in your home.

7. What is your favorite food? If you could choose anything, what would you pick to eat for breakfast? For lunch? For dinner?

8. Describe your last birthday party or celebration. Why is this your favorite?

9. Describe your favorite game or video game as if you are a character in the game. Walk us through it.

10. Who is your favorite person? Describe how you spend your favorite holiday with them.

11. What is your favorite character from a TV show or book and why?

12. If your life was a fairy tale, which one would it most resemble and why?

13. What is your favorite movie and why? Favorite TV show?

14. What was your favorite book to read when you were younger? What is your favorite book now? Why do you love it?

15. What is something grown-ups or family members ask you about? How does it make you feel?

16. What is one thing you are grateful for this week? Why?

17. What would your dream job be? Why?

18. What do you know a lot about that you could talk (or write) about for days?

19. What is your favorite season and why?

20. What is your favorite sport or hobby and why?

Bonus  journal prompts !

21. What kind of ice cream or dessert do you love best? Why?

22. What do you hope to accomplish before you grow into an older kid or adult?

23. If you got to spend a whole day with one famous person, who would it be and what would you do?

20 Letter Writing Prompts

Letter writing may feel like a lost art, but it's a terrific way to help kids practice writing skills because it requires an audience and purpose. Letters can be written to send to real family members or best friends. And every person has a different writing style when they write a letter, which makes them unique!

Letters can also be creatively designed to be a part of a story. Or they can just be practice for writing with a fun writing prompt.

Whether or not you use letter writing prompts for students or as a meaningful exercise to strengthen writing skills with your kids at home, or as a method for creative writing practice in school, letters themselves are a timeless art and method of connecting with others.

Letters can also inspire writers to take up a diary. Who knows, maybe they'll even want to use some of these writing prompts for their next diary entry, just for continued practice.

Give these creative writing prompts a try!

Recommended time for each: 10+ minutes

24. Write a letter to the most used piece of furniture in your home.

25. Write a letter to a best friend or good friend about a wild adventure you'd like to take together.

26. Write a letter to your favorite movie star.

27. Write a letter to your favorite wild animal (or your least favorite!) in a zoo or aquarium.

28. Write a letter to a family member about something you learned on your first day of school.

29. Write a letter to your favorite TV show character about what they should do in a future episode.

30. Write a letter to an alien explaining how you do an everyday task like eating or playing.

31. Imagine you can send mail through a time machine. Write a letter to your past or future self.

32. Write a letter to the inventor of your favorite food, toy, or game. Tell them what you love about it.

33. Write a letter to a historical figure you admire.

34. Write a letter to your favorite athlete or musician explaining why you love to see them perform.

35. Write a letter to an inventor of a household object with ideas for its improvement.

36. Write a letter to a parent, teacher, or other grown up to thank them.

37. Write a letter to a person, school, or organization about something that needs to be changed.

38. Write a letter to your favorite childhood cartoon.

39. Write a letter to your favorite author.

40. Write a letter to a pet you wish you had. (This could be a wild animal or a magical creature!)

41. Write a letter to a grandparent, aunt, uncle or other grownup about the best thing they cook or bake for you.

42. Write a letter to a sibling or friend full of as many jokes as you can think of.

43. Write a letter to the sidewalk explaining why everyone walks on them.

Bonus letter writing prompts: postcards!

Postcards require you to condense your message into as few words as possible. Try these!

44. Write about a winter or summer vacation memory.

45. Tell a friend about your last school year.

20 Story Writing Prompts

If you have a little more time, you can try these prompts to write a short story. Sometimes the hardest part about writing a story is coming up with a story idea that can get you or your students and kids started.

This article is here to help everyone get over that slump. It doesn't have to be the funniest story or best story in the world to be a great story. Every writer only gets better with practice.

Don't feel like you have to take any of these upcoming story ideas too seriously. Writing a short story is not a life or death situation. It is something that you can use  to explore yourself, your beliefs, and big, unanswered questions—all of which you get to explore through the eyes of a fictional character you create!

Most stories feature a main character who wants something, but conflict gets in the way. And the conflict forces them to make a crucial decision.

How will your hero pursue their goal? Figure this out by writing out your story idea!

Recommended time for each: 15+ minutes

46. Write a new ending or a next chapter for your favorite or a well-known fairy tale.

47. You get a call from your best friend that their favorite item is missing. Write a story where you work together to find it.

48. Imagine your bus or car suddenly turns into a spaceship with a course charted for outer space. What happens next?

49. A classmate or sibling calls for help and disappears before you can react. How will you find out what happened to them?

50. You're watching your favorite TV show when the screen flickers and you're transported into the show. What happens next?

51. A magical bird flies into a house and won't leave. What happens next?

52. A character finds a diary on their way home from school, and it's full of clues to a well-known lost treasure. Follow the clues.

53. You build a robot that is able to solve the world's most pressing problem, but you've lost control of it. What will you do?

54. Rewrite an historical event from the perspective of a kid your age living through it.

55. A character wakes up as the star player for their favorite sports team. The only problem is that they didn't get the skills to match. They have to go to practice to fake it until they find a way to change back.

56. A character discovers that their friend group is having a bash on the beach without them, but they know their family will be in the same area that day. What do they do?

57. A character's parent needs life-saving medicine but they can't afford it. How will the character get help?

58. In the middle of an acting class, an actor gets carried away and admits a life-changing secret. What happens next?

59. Send a dog and an armadillo on an adventure together to save another animal. (Challenge: no animals die.)

60. A first-time thief accidentally breaks into the wrong house and chaos ensues. What happens?

61. A character takes a wrong turn in a basement and gets lost in a series of underground tunnels where they find . . . finish the story.

62. Rewrite your favorite superhero scene or battle from the viewpoint of the villain.

63. A character inadvertently swaps backpacks with someone who is clearly a spy. What happens next?

64. A bookworm gets locked in a haunted library and can only find the way out by solving a ghost's riddles. How will they do it?

65. A couple kids are fishing from their canoe when a whirlpool opens and . . . what happens?

20 Story Setting Prompts

One element that can make or break a short story is the setting. You can have the most exciting story idea in the world, but if the setting falls short, the story probably will, too.

Use these creative writing prompts to play with imaginative settings that you can combine with story idea starters or character conflict that can amaze your friends and family.

Recommended time for each: 5 minutes

66. Describe a drive to town. (Challenge: Before cars were invented.)

67. Describe an underground tunnel in a forest.

68. You've just moved into your dream house when disaster strikes. Describe the scene.

69. Describe standing in the middle of a rushing stream or river.

70. Describe a new planet where an astronaut landed when they took a wrong turn in space.

71. Describe an abandoned skate park or playground.

72. Describe experiencing a storm from inside a car or bus.

73. Describe a world where everyone forgets something all the time.

74. Describe what it feels like in the top bunk of a cabin in the woods at midnight with no electricity.

75. Describe what it feels like to dangle your feet in the water from the edge of a dock.

76. Describe a restaurant with over-the-top decor.

77. Describe climbing through the branches of a tree. (Challenge: a bear is chasing you)

78. Describe how it feels to play hide-and-seek from your favorite real or imagined hiding spot.

79. Describe a fashion show. (Challenge: for puppy clothes)

80. Describe a summer hike on a challenging mountain trail.

81. Describe sitting in the bleachers during a packed event.

82. Describe a classroom or living room with too much stuff in it.

83. Describe getting stuck on a boat in the middle of a large lake or the ocean.

84. Describe the control room of a space ship or space station. (Challenge: add an emergency alarm buzzing)

85. Describe a supervillain's lair. (Challenge: add a stuffed bunny and make us believe it)

20 Character Conflict Writing Prompts

Conflict is what keeps a character from getting what they want. It can be another person (like a villain) or bad luck, a fear or flaw.

As you use this set of writing prompts, focus on making your character act in the face of conflict.

86. You receive a letter that you've been admitted to a high school that builds treehouses, but on the first day, you realize you're afraid of heights. What will you do?

87. You discover you have a superpower only to realize that you can only use it in one small confined space. What will you do?

88. A character spent a month and a lot of money decorating and preparing for an outdoor party when a freak snow storm hits. What will they do?

89. In the middle of a talent show, a performer begins reciting a poem that someone else wrote and had never shared with anyone. Write the confrontation scene.

90. A wilderness guide wanders off track losing a group of kids who have to survive on their wits and teamwork. How will they do it?

91. A singer joins a reality TV show contest when their twin sibling shows up one stage and says they are singing the same song. What happens next?

92. A scientist finds a rare rock formation that opens into another world, but his arch enemy appears as they're inspecting it. What will they do?

93. A bully gets trapped inside their favorite social media app and has to figure out how to make amends with those they have hurt to find their way out. How will they do it?

94. A family who often argues gets snowed into a cabin together one winter. How will they survive the storm and each other?

95. A character's cat goes missing and a week later, they see a grumpy neighbor feeding it on the back porch. How will they get it back?

96. A gamer stumbles into a chat room where other users are planning to shut down the network, and he has to find a way to stop them before it's too late.

97. A character is quietly finishing his work at school when there's a knock at the door and he gets called into the hallway where the frowning principal and another student wait. What happens next?

98. A knight is captured and told they will fight the fiercest creature in the land to the death. When they enter the arena, what do they see and how do they defeat it?

99. A spy on a top secret mission enters an enemy camp and sees their brother who is clearly part of the organization they're spying on. What do they do?

100. An assassin accidentally bumps into their arch enemy . . . at a children’s carnival where they’ve both taken their kids for an outing. What do they do?

101. A dancer gets a job on a video shoot for their favorite band of all time, but when rehearsal begins, they realize something isn't right. What happens and what will they do?

102. A tree crashes down destroying a hiker's only known bridge on the path back to their car, and their cell phone has no service. What will they do?

103. A soccer star is headed into the championship game, but they have been in a scoring slump for the entire series. What will they do to get out of their head and lead their team to victory?

104. Last year's art show winner is given the opportunity to judge this year's contest. They weren't supposed to see any of the entries before the competition, but they accidentally see a small section of the school bully's painting as they dragged it down the hall to display. When the judge arrives to view the show, they realize that the bully's work is really good, but the bully has been so mean to them and their friends. What will they do?

105. A student newspaper editor is stuck and doesn't know what to write, but their story deadline is tomorrow and they were just assigned a book report too! How will they finish on time?

A Special Note for Teachers and Parents of Kid Writers

Teaching kids to write can feel overwhelming, especially if you don’t feel confident as a writer yourself. I work from three principles that help me encourage writers:

  • Writing is hard work whether you are a beginner or a professional. Honor the process and write alongside your kids. It’s magic.
  • Build on strengths and state explicitly what is working, what is clear, and what is unique about the writer’s voice and work.
  • Beginning and developing writers cannot address everything at once. Invest in a cycle of deliberate practice, feedback , and application. Repeat.

Overall, writing is an amazing way to empower students by teaching them to use their voice and imaginations. Sometimes all they need is a little help getting started.

These writing prompts are designed for kids of all ages. Pull one or several and use as a great activator for a class—or a fun writing session in general!

It's important to teach children to use their voices, and to stretch their imaginations. Starting with these creative writing prompts for kids might be just what they need to get started, and gain confidence in exploring and sharing their ideas.

What are some of your favorite kids writing prompts?   Let us know in the comments .

It's time to use some of these creative writing prompts for kids to practice!

Depending on how much time you'd like to write, choose one of the writing prompts from this article's list. Set a timer for fifteen minutes , or ten or five. Then, write!

Don't worry about editing. Just press start and go for it! When you're done, take it one step further and share what you—or your students—come up with together.

If you're an adult/ kid-at-heart who wrote to a prompt, please share your practice in the Pro Practice Workshop here . And once you've shared, be sure to leave feedback for someone else who has shared their writing!

pictures for creative writing for kids

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Sue Weems is a writer, teacher, and traveler with an advanced degree in (mostly fictional) revenge. When she’s not rationalizing her love for parentheses (and dramatic asides), she follows a sailor around the globe with their four children, two dogs, and an impossibly tall stack of books to read. You can read more of her writing tips on her website .

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Picture Writing Prompts for Kids (With Free Printables!)

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Do your kids sometime struggle with writing? Mine do at times, and that’s when these picture writing prompts come in handy! They are easy to use and give kids a little extra help when they can’t think about what to write .

kid doing picture writing prompt worksheet

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I have a daughter who hates writing and a son who loves it. My daughter can tell wonderful stories, but struggles sometimes when it comes to putting all of those great ideas on paper. She does fine with nonfiction writing, but creative writing is not her favorite!

Using things like “caption this” activities or “one sentence story starters” are helpful because she has something to start her off. She is not just staring at a blank page wondering what to write. Picture writing prompts for kids (like the free printables below) are also great because they do the same thing. She has a picture and a few questions to get her thinking so she doesn’t have to come up with everything from scratch.

If you already know what picture writing prompts are and how to use them and would just like some examples to get you started, then just sign up below!

When you sign up you’ll get access to my free resource library where you’ll find these FREE picture writing prompt printables (there are 10 pictures, each with questions and two different kinds of lines to write on – making it great for younger and older kids!) .

examples of picture writing prompt worksheets

What are picture writing prompts for kids?

Before we go any further, it may be helpful to explain what picture writing prompts for kids even are!

Picture writing prompts are a type of writing prompt that uses pictures, images, or photos to help a child start their story. They act as a jumping off point in a child’s writing and help get them started. Or they may use the picture simply as the setting or character in the story and add the rest of the details on their own.

It can be overwhelming to have too many details, and intimidating to just have a blank paper to work with. Picture writing prompts are a good balance of having something to work with, but not too much.

They are also helpful for descriptive writing as they encourage your child to think about what they see, and what they could smell or hear if they were in that picture. This helps them to write more descriptive stories.

How do you use picture writing prompts?

There is no right or wrong way to use these types of prompts, as they are pretty open-ended. However, here are some tips for how you can use them with your child.

  • Think about what you are trying to have your child gain from the writing. Do you want them to focus on creative writing, practice using more descriptive words, or will it just be a fun freewriting activity?
  • Pick photos or pictures that are interesting and can be interpreted in different ways. This way their stories will be more creative since they can write about what that picture means to them. (Use the free picture writing prompts for kids printable below to get you started!)
  • Let your child take their time to look at the photo and gather their thoughts before starting to write anything.
  • Then have them write! You can set a time limit if you’d like, or just let them write for as little (within reason!) or as much as they’d like.
  • Older kids should be able to write longer stories that are more descriptive and detailed, while younger ones may only write a few sentences about the picture. You know your child best, so just encourage them to do their best and write as much as they can.
  • If your child is young or really struggles with this activity, you can always show them the picture and have them verbally tell you what they think it’s about. They are still using their imagination, thinking about descriptive words, and developing their creative writing skills, even if they are not putting these ideas on paper.

How do you write a creative response to a picture?

Again, if your child doesn’t like writing, or struggles to come up with a story, they may need a little extra help – and that’s ok! Here are some ways you can encourage them to think about the pictures.

You can help them by…

  • Who? – Who is in the picture? Who are other characters that may be a part of the story?
  • What? – What is going on in the photo? What do they think happened before or will happen in the future? What could the problem and/or solution be?
  • When? – When does this story take place? Is it set in modern times, in the past, or in the future?
  • Where? – Where does the picture take place? Where did the person or object come from or where are they going?
  • Why? – Why are the events happening? Why is the person/thing in the photo there?
  • How? – How does the person or thing in the picture feel? How do they think? How are they doing the thing they’re doing?
  • Encouraging them to think of descriptive words that come to mind when they first look at the picture.
  • Reminding them to ask questions about the photo and try think about what the answers or solutions could be.
  • Telling them to let their imaginations run wild! Let them come up with creative ideas first, then help them organize their thoughts on paper.
  • Offering a few ideas of your own if they are stuck or getting really frustrated. Hopefully this will get the ball rolling and get them thinking of creative answers on their own!

FREE printables! (10 picture writing prompts for kids)

You can use any photo, picture, or image you’d like when doing these kinds of writing prompts with your child. They can be real photos, pictures from books or magazines (they can use the pictures as inspiration and write their stories in a notebook or on paper), or pictures that you find and print off the internet (to save money on printing, check out the HP Instant Ink program !).

If you would rather have picture prompts that are already done for you, then simply sign up below and you will get 10 picture writing prompts with questions for each picture to help your child think about what to write. There are 20 pages total – 10 different picture prompts, each with two kinds of lined paper to write on. Regular lines for older kids and handwriting lines for younger kids.

I hope your child enjoys these FREE picture prompts and has fun creating exciting stories about each one! Do you use picture writing prompts with your child? Do they like them?

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20 Free Picture Writing Prompts for kids with Vocabulary

pictures for creative writing for kids

Is your child struggling with their writing? We have made these fun and engaging picture writing prompts along with word bank to give them push with their writing skills. These writing prompts focus on building kids writing, spelling and vocabulary skills. 

Writing is such an important task for children. To make writing fun for children we have made this amazing writing prompts to support child story writing and narrative skills. Each page contains a picture along with vocabulary that will help children to write about the picture. Once children finish writing they can colour the picture to make their work more attractive.

The pages are full of different fun and creative ideas to let children imagination run wild. From dragons, dark forest or being at a spooky Halloween spot! These writing prompts have it all.

Related: 21 Creative writing story starters for children!

20 Free Picture Writing Prompts with Vocabulary:

Let your child imagination flow smoothly with these fantastic picture writing prompts. These prompts will provide them with plenty of new ideas that they never have thought about.

The prompts also come with writers checklist. Let children take ownership of their writing and self-assess what they have written.

To save the free sheets just click on the image and save a PDF file.

Let us know your favourite writing prompts by commenting below. For more amazing free resources, like and share our Facebook page and also follow us on Pinterest .

For more wonderful books and resources visit our store.

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225 Fun & Free Creative Writing Prompts for Kids in All Grade Levels

Two students sit at a desk together working on writing prompts for kids.

Written by Maria Kampen

Prodigy English is here! Get your students playing — and learning — today.

  • Teacher Resources
  • Elementary school writing prompts

Middle school writing prompts

High school writing prompts.

  • Social emotional learning jounal prompts
  • Math writing prompts

Writing prompts are meant to unlock creativity. They’re story starters designed to inspire creative thinking. They can take you to places you’ve been or recall an important time in your life. 

But mostly, they’re useful tools for teachers to inspire writing growth in students from grade school to high school.

“Once upon a time, in a land far, far away…”

It’s amazing how one simple sentence can send you on a journey to places you’ve never been, filled with untold possibilities. 

Reading is great, but you know what’s even better? Giving your students the power to write stories for themselves. 

Writing prompts for kids help students:

  • Express themselves and their creativity
  • Grasp lifelong literacy skills and concepts
  • Tell their own stories and build self-confidence
  • Develop a growth mindset when it comes to their writing skills

Writing is like a muscle — it takes practice to build up skills. Luckily, we put together a list of over 200 writing prompts to help your students get started. We’ve also organized them by middle school, high school and elementary school to help teachers decide whether these prompts are age-appropriate for their students.

Grade school writing prompts

Grade schoolers can definitely begin to address complex ideas when it comes to story writing — but you should seek to keep the prompts simple and straightforward. 

Reluctant writers might be intimidated by complicated writing ideas — and this is an age where we should be encouraging creativity.

Creative writing prompts for elementary schoolers

Young child sits at a desk with a notebook and pencil, writing in the notebook.

Whether it’s exploring the furthest reaches of outer space, traveling across the Sahara desert or sticking a little closer to home, these creative writing prompts will have students imagining endless possibilities for their writing.

  • Write about what your life would be like if you turned into a squirrel. What would you do every day?
  • A strange spaceship just crashed and landed in your backyard. What happens next?
  • Make up a story about where thunder comes from.
  • You find an old notebook hidden in an attic. What does it say? Who did it belong to?
  • You have a magic garden. What magical plants do you grow? How do you take care of them?
  • Write a story about running away with the circus when it comes to town.
  • Rewrite “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” from the perspective of one of the dwarfs (Happy, Sleepy, Dopey, Doc, Grumpy, Sneezy and Bashful).
  • There once was a little boy who ate nothing but oranges. What happened to him?
  • Write a story about a magical hat. Where is it from? What does it do? What does it look like?
  • You’re exploring the rainforest and come across a flower that no one’s ever seen before. Describe it!
  • Tell me a story about a dinosaur living a long, long time ago.
  • Tell me a story about an astronaut visiting another planet. Where are they going? How do they get there? What do they take with them?
  • You discover a magic portal in the park. Where does it lead to?
  • Pick a partner and write a story together! Start by writing the first sentence, then pass it to your partner to write the second sentence.
  • You find buried treasure in the park, hidden in a big wooden chest. What kind of treasure is it? Who left it there?
  • Write a story about a family that can travel in time. 
  • Write a story without using the letter “E”.
  • Write the funniest story you can think of. 
  • There’s a kangaroo in your classroom. How did it get there? What happens when you find it?
  • Write a story about an explorer who keeps getting lost. Where are they trying to go? What do they find along the way?
  • Write a story about a wooden door, a can of soda and a blue shoe.
  • If there was a magical portal in the back of your closet, where would it lead to? 
  • Finish this story: There was a knock on the door. I opened it to find a dog sitting there, and…
  • You come home and find that everything in your house is upside down. What happened?
  • Describe the color “red” without using the word “red”.
  • There’s an old, abandoned house at the end of your street that’s been empty for years. One day, someone moves in.
  • Rewrite the story of Cinderella from the perspective of the stepsisters.  
  • Write a backstory for Ed, the orange Prodigy mascot. 
  • You wake up one morning and find a mermaid in your bathtub. How did they get there? What do you do?
  • Write a story about a monster looking for some friends. 
  • Oh no — your balloon blew away! Write about what happens from the balloon’s perspective. 
  • You and your friends are out for a walk when, out of nowhere, your friends start disappearing! What’s going on?
  • Once upon a time, an old inventor built a weather machine. It sat undiscovered for years — until you found it. What happens next?
  • You just ate a cookie that turned you 15 feet tall. What do you do next?

Fun writing prompts for grade schoolers

Young child sits at a table in front of a window while writing on a sheet of paper.

Everyday life is full of great inspiration for writing! Get students thinking with these easy and fun writing prompts.Write about something you are good at. 

  • If you could write a book about anything, what would you write about?
  • If you could have any animal as a pet, what would it be and why?
  • Do you have a favorite animal? Tell me all about it! Why do you like it?
  • What would you do if you woke up one morning and everything was pink — including you?
  • What food can you not live without? Why?
  • If you could add any class to your school schedule, what would it be?
  • Invent a new day of the week. What is it called? When is it? What do people usually do on that day of the week?
  • If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? 
  • If you could spend a Saturday doing anything you wanted, what adventures would you get up to?
  • If you could have any wild animal as a pet, what would you choose? Why?
  • What's your favorite, wacky food?
  • Where is your favorite place to read? Why?
  • What was the coolest day of school for you? What made it exciting?
  • Which of your toys do you wish could talk? What would they say?
  • If you could only wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it look like?
  • Invent a machine to do a chore for you. What does the machine do? What does it look like?
  • What's your favorite season? What makes it the best?
  • What is your favorite math game and why?
  • Describe your real-life superpower.
  • Finish the story: When I'm older I want to be an expert in…
  • If pets could talk to each other, what would they say?
  • If you were the captain of a ship, what would you call your ship? What would it look like? Where would you go?
  • If your pet could talk to you, what do you think it would say?
  • If you were the only person on earth for one day, what would you do?
  • Plan the perfect birthday party for yourself. 
  • What is your favorite thing to do over summer break?
  • Describe your ideal birthday cake. 
  • If you could add any type of room to your house, what would it be?
  • What’s your favorite movie and why?

Persuasive writing prompts for elementary school

Top-down photograph of a girl with braids sitting at a desk next to another student and writing in a notebook.

Are your students’ opinions up for debate? Ask them to flex their critical thinking skills with these persuasive writing prompts. Once they’re done, get class discussion flowing with a spirited debate!

  • Write a letter convincing your parents to let you get a pet dog. What arguments do you use to persuade them?
  • Convince your teacher that you should be allowed an extra 15 minutes of recess.
  • Convince your best friend to read your favorite book.
  • How would you convince someone to do your chores for you?
  • Write a commercial for your favorite breakfast food. What would convince someone else to try it?
  • What flavor of chips is the best? Why?
  • What would make a better pet — a monkey or a peacock?
  • Do you think children should be allowed to stay up as late as they want?
  • What’s your favorite holiday and why should it be everyone’s favorite? 
  • Convince us that your favorite food should be a staple in everyone’s diet.

As students enter middle school, they’re starting to feel like bigger, older kids. They can start writing original short stories and abstract persuasive essays. 

It’s best to inspire creativity at this age and encourage them to explore their own voice and different writing styles. These prompts will definitely go a long way in inspiring that.

Creative Writing Prompts for Middle Schoolers

  • Invent a new type of transportation for the future. Who uses it? Where does it go?
  • If you had a time machine, where would you visit first — the past or the future? Why?
  • You get on the bus and find a four-piece jazz band giving a concert. What do you do?
  • Design and name your own Prodigy pet . What element are they? What’s their special power?
  • Finish this story: “Something just touched my foot,” they shouted, swimming frantically towards the shore. 
  • Write a silly or scary story to tell around a campfire. 
  • Finish this story: Everything was going so well today — until I tripped and fell, right in front of…
  • Throughout your adventures as a pirate on the high seas, you’ve seen lots of strange and magical creatures. Which one was the most interesting?
  • Deep in the heart of a dark and mysterious cave, there lies a magic stone. Write about your quest to find it. 
  • Write an acrostic poem using the word “strawberry.”
  • There was an old woman who lived in a shoe. She knit and she baked, but what else did she do?
  • Finish this story: “One thing I’ll never do again,” she said, “Is go on vacation with an alpaca.”
  • Make up a new planet and describe it. 
  • Write a story about a family of penguins living on an iceberg.
  • Write a story about a girl who can walk through walls. 
  • You’ve been invited to a ball at the Queen’s palace! What is it like?
  • Imagine you’re exploring the Amazon jungle. Write a diary entry about your day.
  • If you could invent a TV show, what would it be about?
  • You discovered an underwater kingdom! What is it like there?
  • A lonely trumpet player makes friends with the dancer who lives next door. What happens next?
  • You go to the park to fly a kite, but get carried away by the wind! What happens next?
  • Write a story about a volcano that’s about to erupt.
  • Write a story about visiting an old lady who lives deep in the woods.
  • Boom, you’re a superhero! Give yourself an origin story, describe your superpowers and plan what you’ll do to make the world a better place. 
  • Write a story using these six words: calendar, headphones, lipstick, mug, bear.
  • You wake up to find you’re invisible. How did it happen? What do you do?
  • There’s been a robbery at the bank, and you’re in charge of finding the culprit. How do you solve the case?
  • Finish the story: Once upon a time, there was a dragon...
  • You just joined a super-secret spy organization. What’s your first mission?
  • Write a story about being cold without using the word “cold.”
  • You’re a scientist and you’ve just discovered a new type of bug. Describe what it looks like, where it’s from and what you’re going to call it. 
  • Imagine a world where all the birds can talk. What would they say?
  • Write about what happens after the end of your favorite book or movie.
  • Finish the story: She sprinted down the driveway to the mailbox. The package was here!
  • You’re on a hike and a bird starts talking to you. What do you do? What does it say?
  • Write a story using these five words: bubblegum, stapler, spoon, lightbulb, strawberry.
  • You ate a magical carrot and your skin turned orange! What happens next?
  • Write about what it would be like if you had an elephant for a pet.

Fun Writing Prompts for Middle Schoolers

  • If you were in charge of the classroom for a day, what would your class do?
  • Tell me about the last dream you had.
  • You’re trapped on a desert island. What three things did you bring with you and why?
  • What mythical creature would you like to have as a pet? Why?
  • Invent a new type of pasta. What does it look like? What does it taste like?
  • If you could go on vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go? Make a plan and tell the story of your dream vacation.
  • Plan the perfect picnic. Where would it be? What food would you have?
  • If you could decorate your bedroom any way you wanted, what would it look like?
  • Write a story that sounds loud, using onomatopoeia (words that sound like their meaning, like crash, snort, bang and boom.)
  • Invent a new type of cookie. What does it taste like?
  • Invent a new sport. What is it called? What are the rules?
  • How would you disguise yourself to blend in with a forest?
  • You just won a special award from the president. What did you do to earn that award?
  • Do you collect anything? What is it and why? If not, what would you like to collect?
  • You just found a genie in a bottle. What three things would you wish for? (Remember, no wishing for extra wishes!
  • Explain how to play your favorite sport or do your favorite hobby. Make it as exciting as possible!
  • Describe the most beautiful sunrise or sunset you’ve ever seen.
  • If you could live in any book or movie, which one would you choose and why?
  • Imagine that you’re going on a camping trip. What do you pack to make sure the trip is fun?
  • If you could invent a robot to do any chore, what chore would it be? How would the robot do it?
  • Would you rather it was always raining, or always snowing?
  • Imagine you’re a toy inventor. What will you create?
  • Would you rather climb to the top of a mountain or go scuba diving?
  • Interview a family member about their childhood, then write it as a story.
  • What was your favorite toy growing up — why was it so special to you?

Persuasive Writing Prompts for Middle School

  • If you could change one thing about your school, what would it be and why?
  • Is it better to read the book before you watch the movie, or watch the movie before you read the book?
  • Persuade someone to try out your favorite hobby or sport.
  • What’s the best way to try and persuade a friend to do what you want to do?
  • When is peer pressure good? When is peer pressure bad?
  • Is it better to have lots of friends, or just a few really good friends?
  • Should students be in charge of what they learn in school?

High school students can either be tasked with more complex writing prompts or breathe nuance into simple story ideas. Students can drive these prompts in a million different ways.

So while not necessarily more complicated than middle school, these prompts can be tweaked, either by the student or teacher, to encourage thought-provoking output.

Creative Writing Prompts for High Schoolers

  • Write a story about someone your age who lives on the other side of the world. 
  • Pick up the nearest book and turn to page 7. Close your eyes and point to a random word on the page, then write a story about that word.
  • Write a story in ten words or less.
  • You fell asleep for 100 years. What does the world look like when you wake up?
  • Finish the story: “This isn’t what I hoped would happen,” she said….
  • You’re walking down the street when you see someone who looks exactly like you.
  • Write a story where the main character learns something new about themselves.
  • Write a story that takes place in the desert. 
  • Write a story about a day where everything seems to go wrong. 
  • Write a poem about the color blue.
  • How would your life be different if you didn’t have access to a computer, video games or your phone?

Fun writing prompts for high schoolers

  • You win a million dollars, but there’s a catch — you have to spend it all in 24 hours, or you lose all the money. What do you do?
  • Write about something you or your family does from the perspective of someone from another country.
  • If you could make up a new holiday, when would it be and what would it celebrate?
  • Go out on a nature walk and find a tree. Write the story of that tree, from the time it was a seed until now.
  • What’s the most boring superpower you can think of? How would it be useful?
  • If you could pass any law, what would it be?
  • You meet yourself in the future, as a grown-up at age 35 — what do you talk about? 
  • If you had to show aliens the most important/best things in the world, what would you show them?
  • Who is your hero and why?
  • Write about the best surprise you ever got. 
  • What are three good things you can do for the environment? How can you encourage the people around you to do good things for the environment?
  • What is your earliest memory? Write down as many details as you can remember.
  • If you could take two people – real or fictional – on a cross-country road trip, who would you take? Where would you go?
  • If you could have any job in the world tomorrow, what would you do?
  • What is the best thing about living in your city or neighbourhood?
  • Write a letter to your 30-year-old self. What do you think you’ll accomplish by then?
  • Teach me how to make your favorite recipe.
  • Describe the sound of your favorite song using descriptive words.

Persuasive writing prompts for high school

  • Should kids be allowed to use social media unsupervised? Why or why not?
  • Persuade someone to start a healthy habit, or get rid of a bad one.
  • Should all single-use plastics be outlawed? Why or why not?
  • Should our school have a dress code? Why or why not?
  • Is it more important to be right or to not hurt someone else’s feelings?
  • What important historical figure do you think belongs on the ten-dollar bill?
  • Do you think you’re born with your personality traits, or do you gain them as you grow up?
  • Should mobile apps be responsible for protecting your privacy — why or why not?

Social emotional learning journal prompts

Two students sit outside against a brick wall, working in notebooks.

School is about more than just books and quizzes — it’s about preparing students for the rest of their lives. Social emotional learning teaches them how to build good relationships with peers, understand and control their emotions and make healthy life decisions.

Journaling is a great way for students to reflect on their feelings in a safe, private space. Use these journaling prompts as thought starters for more social emotional learning!

Check out our list of the 25 best social emotional learning activities for students here. 

  • Tell me about a tradition you have with your family or friends. 
  • What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
  • Have you ever found something that you lost? How did you feel when you found it?
  • What is something you haven’t learned this school year that you’re still wondering about?
  • What do you do when you’re angry? Write about three ways you calm yourself down.
  • Where do you feel the safest? Why do you feel safe there?
  • Write a poem to make a friend happy.
  • When was the last time you were kind to someone? How can you be kind to someone today?
  • How are you feeling today? Are you happy, sad, excited or anxious?
  • If you could give your best friend a present, what would it be?
  • What are the qualities you look for in a friend? Why is it important to be a good friend?
  • What does responsibility mean to you?
  • Who do you talk to when you’re worried about something? How do they make you feel better?
  • If you could make a card for anyone in your life, who would it be for and what would it say?
  • What’s your favorite thing about yourself?
  • Write about a time you had to make a hard decision. How did you make your decision?
  • What do you do to make yourself happy when you’re sad?
  • Write about a time you were disappointed. 
  • What are three things that make your best friend awesome?
  • What do you think empathy means? Why is it important?
  • How can you cheer up a friend who is sad?
  • What makes you a good friend? How can you be a better friend?
  • What’s the best piece of advice a friend, parent or teacher has ever given you?
  • Write three goals for the rest of the school year. How are you going to accomplish them?
  • What does responsibility mean to you? What are you responsible for at school and at home?
  • What person in your life makes you feel confident?
  • What scares you? How can you overcome your fears?
  • Tell me about a time when you tried something new. How did it feel? Did you do it again?

Math writing prompts for kids

A student holds an orange with an equation written on it while working on a math writing prompt.

Whether it’s tackling word problems or explaining a new concept, writing is a surprisingly good tool for the math classroom. 

A math journal can help you understand what students already know, while giving them space to work through tricky concepts on their own. Use these writing prompts to promote literacy in every subject — and help students avoid math anxiety .

  • Tell me everything you know about ________.
  • Explain, in words, how to solve this problem.
  • What is and isn’t true about this situation?
  • What is _______?
  • Explain two different ways to solve this problem. Which one is better?
  • What did you get correct in this problem?
  • What mistakes did you make while solving this problem?
  • What do you not understand about _____?
  • Write a word problem using the concept we’re learning about. 
  • What did you learn today?
  • How do you use math in your everyday life?
  • What is the easiest/hardest part of math class?
  • What discoveries did you make in math class today?

Final thoughts on writing prompts for kids

Writing prompts aren’t the end of the story — they’re just the beginning. Encourage your students to build a regular writing practice, and soon you’ll see the benefits in every class. 

Where will your students’ imaginations take them?

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52 Creative Writing Prompts for Kids to Let Their Imagination Fly

  • November 9, 2022

Creative writing has many benefits for kids. They learn to appreciate how stories work, they hear the wonderful way sounds can match with rhymes, and their love of reading grows as they become writers. Some children may be so inspired that they dream of being authors when they grow up! Creative writing helps children develop :

  • Imagination and creativity
  • Self-expression
  • Self-confidence
  • Communication and persuasion skills

Also, it’s just plain fun!

What exactly is creative writing? It’s writing where you can just let your imagination fly. Your child can make up a story, a poem, or a song to explore their feelings or to simply tell a good story.

Here are 52 of the best creative and fiction writing prompts for children. These creative writing prompts are one way to help your child dream up something new every time they pick up a pencil. Encourage your child to write the story they would want to read.

52 of the Best Fiction Writing Prompts for Kids

Your children can use these ideas as creative inspiration as they practice writing words and sentences. PreK and early elementary-aged children who haven’t learned to write yet might enjoy drawing pictures to tell their stories, or they could tell a story out loud to their family.

Creative Writing Prompts for PreK Children

1. Young readers can use these Rusty and Rosy printable coloring pages to create their own stories by filling in the blanks.

pictures for creative writing for kids

2. Use this sentence starter activity as a prompt for beginning writers to craft their own sentences.

3. Imagine it snowed overnight. How would you spend the next day having fun in the snow?

4. Write a poem about your family. What are some words to describe your loved ones?

5. You wake up with the ability to talk to animals. What do the birds outside your window have to say?

6. There’s a dolphin in your bathtub. How did it get there and how will you get it back home to the ocean?

7. You’re president for a day. What do you do?

8. You’re a veterinarian for a dragon who has a sore throat. How will you help them?

Creative Writing Prompts For Elementary-Aged Children

9. Suddenly you’re nocturnal and stay awake all night long. What happens late at night that’s different from daytime?

10. Write a superhero story where the villain wants to become good. How do they convince the superheroes to trust them?

11. It’s the first day of school for robots. What do you learn at robot school?

12. You get to make a new national holiday. What is it about and how do you celebrate?

13. You get $100 but you have to spend it by the end of the day. What do you do with it?

14. You are an inventor whose job is to create the best toys. What will you make?

15. Suddenly ducks don’t like you. They quack at you and chase you away at the park. How do you get them to like you again?

16. Oh, no! Suddenly ducks love you and won’t leave you alone! How do you get them to let you be?

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17. You go back in time and meet your parents when they were your age. What do you tell them?

18. You’ve just won the world championship. What did you win it in? Describe the competition.

19. You’re the world’s greatest detective. Describe your favorite unusual case. Did you solve it or is it still a mystery?

20. Write a story about a superhero who loses their powers but still has to find a way to be a hero.

21. You trade places with your parents for a day. What would you do?

22. Rewrite the ending of your favorite book. Will it be happy or sad?

23. One morning, the world doesn’t have electricity any more. What are your days like now?

24. Space aliens land and it’s your lucky job to show them around. Where will you take them?

25. The chicken finally tells you why it crossed the road. What is the secret?

26. You’re the mayor. What will you do to make your community better?

27. Tonight you cook dinner for your family. What interesting food is on the menu that will surprise them?

28. You wake up stuck in the last movie you watched. What is it, and what do you do?

29. Write about the best magic trick you can imagine.

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31. Write a letter to your favorite author telling them what you like about their books! Use this free printable template .

32. There’s a light switch in your home but nobody knows what it’s for. One day, you discover the secret. What does it light up?

33. You have a pet dinosaur. What’s your dinosaur’s name? What’s your day together like?

34. You can fly like a bird. What kind of fun would you have soaring in the clouds?

35. Describe yourself with rhyming words!

36. Your family takes a big road trip that goes wrong in the funniest way possible. What happens?

37. You discover an island no one has ever seen before. Describe what it’s like.

38. Rewrite the ending of your favorite movie the way you want it to be.

39. You show up to the first day of school and discover that your new teacher is a wizard or a witch. What will they teach in class?

40. You find a mysterious treasure map. How would you start your treasure hunt?

41. You’re a paleontologist and find a new type of dinosaur. What did it look like, and what did it do back in the past?

42. Your favorite superhero needs your help! What can you do to save the day?

43. You’re the world’s youngest astronaut and get to fly to the moon. Describe your space trip.

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45. One night, you discover that garden gnomes come to life until the sun rises. What fun do they have all night long?

46. Practice writing letters with this printout . Imagine you’re living on a moon base. Write a letter to your cousin on Earth describing how things are going.

47. You get to go shopping at a magical grocery store with your family. What special treats would you buy?

48. You have a magic wand. What spells will you cast?

49. What does your shadow do when you’re not around?

50. You can have the powers of any animal in the world. What animal is it? What would your powers be?

51. Write a journal entry from the point of view of a time traveler who visits 100 years into the future. What surprises them in that different world?

52. You get to spend the night in a museum. What kind of museum? How will you have fun?

Creative writing is just one kind of writing exercise. You can also find a great list of journal prompts for kids , one for each week of the year, to help kids practice writing while learning to express their ideas and opinions.

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Sat / act prep online guides and tips, 57 fun creative writing prompts for kids.

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General Education

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With many kids learning from home due to Covid-19, easy-to-organize educational activities for students are more important than ever. Writing helps improve students' creativity, communication skills, and ability to focus, among other benefits.

Whether you're a teacher, a parent now homeschooling, or a student looking for something new and interesting to write about, these writing prompts are for you. We've collected 57 writing prompts for students of various ages, from elementary school through high school. From spooky story writing prompts to debating how to improve schools, this article has writing prompts that will appeal to all students.

Tips for Using These Writing Prompts

What's the best way to use these creative writing prompts for kids? It depends on a lot of factors, including the student's age, current schooling structure, and their own interests and abilities. Here are some suggestions:

Use as a daily writing prompts exercise. You can assign one of these prompts at the beginning or end of the school day, as a way to prepare for the rest of the day or unwind after schoolwork.

Set up a quiet space to write. Many people have a hard enough time writing even with no distractions, and it can be nearly impossible to respond thoughtfully to a prompt if there's a television on, people talking, etc. Having a distraction-free space can help your student focus on the work at hand and produce their best writing.

Suggest an estimated writing length. Most of these journal writing prompts are designed to be answered both briefly or much more in depth. By giving a number of words/pages to aim for, you'll give your student a better idea of how detailed their response should be.

Consider having students handwrite their responses. Writing by hand can help students be more thoughtful about their responses because they'll typically write slower than they can type. It can also help students improve their handwriting skills.

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57 Fun Writing Prompts for Kids

Below are over 50 journal topics for kids, organized into three categories: narrative writing prompts, fiction/creative writing prompts, and argumentative writing prompts for kids.

Narrative Writing Prompts for Kids

#1: What is your favorite holiday or holiday tradition?

#2: If you could go back in time for one day, which time period would you choose?

#3: If you could learn one thing about your future, what would it be? Or, if you prefer not to know anything, why would you make that choice?

#4: Pretend you're writing an autobiography and need to create a table of contents. What would you name each chapter?

#5: What is your earliest memory? Write every detail you can remember about it.

#6: If you had the power to change one thing about school, what would you change and why?

#7: Describe three goals you have for yourself.

#8: Imagine you are creating your dream restaurant. What kind of food would you serve, what would the menu look like, and how would the restaurant be decorated?

#9: If you could build your dream house, what would it look like? What rooms would it have? What would the yard be like?

#10: What is the bravest thing you've done in your life? Why did you make the choice you did? How did you feel during and after the situation?

#11: What is the funniest thing you've ever seen?

#12: What is your dream job?

#13: What is one thing you're really good at?

#14: Pretend you are a professional reviewer and write a review of a book you recently read or a TV show/movie you recently watched. How many stars would you give it? What did you like about it, and what didn't you like?

#15: Write about a time you did something kind for someone else. What did you do, how did it make you feel, and how did it make the person you helped feel?

#16: Imagine your life in ten years. What do you think you will be like? What will you be doing?

#17: Write about the craziest dream you've ever had.

#18: What would your perfect weekend look like? What things would you do? Who would you see? What would you eat?

#19: Do you like your name? If so, why? If not, what would you change it to?

#20: Make a list of your favorite activities for each season.

#21: Write about your least favorite chore. What don't you like about it? What would you invent to make the chore easier?   

#22: What three pieces of advice would you give to your younger self?

#23: If you could be famous for anything, what would it be? 

#24: If you could create a new law, what would it be? Do you think it would be hard to enforce?

#25: Write about a time you think one or both of your parents made a mistake. What did they do, and what do you think they should have done? Did they admit their mistake?

#26: How would your best friend describe you? How would you describe your best friend? (You can also have your friend do this prompt and read each other's responses.)

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Fiction and Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

#27: Write a story about a character taking a submarine ride under the sea. What sort of things do you think they would see there? Would they be afraid or excited?

#28: Write a new chapter for your favorite book or new scene for your favorite movie. Which characters would be there, and what would they be doing?

#29: Invent a new pet. What would it look like, and what would you call it? What would it eat, and how would you care for it?

#30: Start a story with a lyric from a song.

#31: Pick something nearby (toy, pet, flower, etc.) and write a haiku about it. Bonus points if it rhymes!

#32: Write a story about a character who gets lost in the woods and discovers a mysterious person there.

#33: Write your own silly internet quiz.

#34: Choose an object in the house and describe it in as much detail as you can without saying what it is. Then, have a parent or sibling try to guess what you described.

#35: Write a scary story that includes: a spooky pumpkin patch, a vampire afraid of garlic, and a black cat.

#36: Do some people watching out your window. Write a story using one or more of them as the characters. Make up backstories and imagine what they're doing.

#37: Write a story about what you think your parents were like when they were younger.

#38: Your character survives a shipwreck and washes up on a mysterious island. What is on the island and how does (s)he get back home?

#39: Imagine you can choose to be any animal for a day. Which animal would you choose? What would you do?

#40: Write a poem about your favorite season.

#41: Imagine you are chosen for the first mission to Mars. What would you bring with you, and what do you think exploring the planet would be like?

#42: Write a sympathetic story from the point of view of the "bad guy." (Think fractured fairy tales like Wicked or The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs! , although the story doesn't have to be a fairy tale.)

#43: Imagine your pet gets a day to roam free before returning home. Where would it go, and what would it see?

#44: If you could have dinner with any three people (real or fictional), who would you choose and what would you talk about? What would you eat?

#45: Look through photographs, drawings, and paintings. Choose one and write a story about it, imagining where it is and the types of people/things there.

#46: Imagine aliens landed on earth. What would they look like, and how would they act? Would they be friendly or not?

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Argumentative Writing Prompts for Kids

#47: Are there dangers of teenagers spending too much time on social media?

#48: Does homework actually help students learn?

#49: Should students doing e-learning this year get letter grades, pass/fail, or no grades?

#50: At what age should children get their own cell phone?

#51: Which is best: ebooks, audiobooks, or traditional print books?

#52: What's more important, PE classes or art classes?

#53: Which celebrity is the best role model for kids? Which is the worst?

#54: Should parents or teachers be able to ban certain books from schools?

#55: Which season is the best?

#56: Should students recite the Pledge of Allegiance in school?

#57: Should students go to school year-round and have shorter breaks throughout the year rather than one long summer vacation?

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What's Next?

Also looking for science activities for kids?  Check out our 37 science experiments for kids that you can do at home!

Want to make some slime? We tell you how to make slimes without borax and without glue as well as how to craft the ultimate super slime .

Pipe cleaners can provide endless craft ideas. Read our guide for simple instructions for 31 fun pipe cleaner crafts for kids.

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Christine graduated from Michigan State University with degrees in Environmental Biology and Geography and received her Master's from Duke University. In high school she scored in the 99th percentile on the SAT and was named a National Merit Finalist. She has taught English and biology in several countries.

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Picture Prompts

A Year of Picture Prompts: Over 160 Images to Inspire Writing

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By Michael Gonchar and Katherine Schulten

  • June 1, 2017

Update, Feb. 15, 2019: Learn more about how to use our 1000s of writing prompts by watching our free on-demand webinar: “ Give Them Something to Write About: Teach Across the Curriculum With New York Times-Inspired Daily Prompts. ”

This school year we added a new feature to our daily lineup of student activities. Called “ Picture Prompts ,” these short, accessible, image-driven posts feature photographs and illustrations from The Times, and invite a variety of written or spoken responses — from creative storytelling to personal narrative to constructing an argument or analyzing what a work of “op-art” might be saying.

Teachers tell us they use these prompts to inspire student writing — whether in their journals , as a timed opportunity or to practice inferring meaning “without worrying about getting the right or wrong answer.”

They also use them with a variety of learners, from high school to middle or elementary school students to English Language Learners of all ages. As one teacher put it, she uses them “for helping teenagers to start talking to each other. ”

Below, we’ve categorized the 160+ prompts we published during the 2016-17 school year based on the type of writing they primarily encourage students to do. All are still open for comment. Plus, we have a lesson plan on how to teach with Picture Prompts, along with other Times images , in case you’re looking for more inspiration.

If you use this feature with your students, or if you have other ideas for how to use images and writing prompts with students, let us know in the comments section.

What’s the story behind this photo? Use your imagination.

Floating You and Me Mysterious Doors Underwater One Night Dog at the Counter Cats in Clothes Sneaker Collection On the Street Beware of Zombies Big Numbers Pool of Sprinkles Secret Spaces A Narwhal’s Life Inspiration From an Illustration Dancers in Masks Frozen Fish Go-Karting Cards in the Air Opening the Door The Badger and the Cow Icebergs Dogs and Stars

Share experiences from your own life.

Sneakers Flavors of Home Toy Trends Meteor Shower In the Park Sports Fans A Trip to Mars Confronting Stereotypes A Remarkable Find Optimists and Pessimists Simone Biles $100 A Favorite Store Kindness Across Divides Winter Comforts Christmas Lights The Celebrity Next Door A Celebrated Tree Kindergarten in a Stadium Advice for New Students Favorite Olympic Athletes Social Media and Body Image Growing Old Staycations An Act of Kindness Fashion Week’s Street Style Reading and Diversity The Effects of Living to Age 122 Distractions Terrifying Encounters Give a Country a Compliment Smashing Pumpkins Day of the Dead World Series Champions Extreme Sports Breathing and Stress Thanksgiving Traditions Giving Tuesday Magic Shoes Breaking Barriers Favorite Mobile Games Your Holiday Traditions National Pride Public Art Fascinating Animals Offbeat Interests Repair Cafes Lunar New Year Protesting Healthy Habits Super Bowl Spending Valentine’s Day Winning Streak Virtual Reality Old-School Skills Dinner An Early Spring 360 Degrees of Holi Blizzards Then and Now Bucket List Good Conversations Escape Steps in a Day Your Five Senses YouTube Stars Losing Things Shoelaces A Good Night’s Sleep Wristwatches 3-D Printing No Fear Exhibits for a Museum of Failure Dresses at the Met Gala Fidget Spinners On the Billboard Chart Water Escapes Forest Kindergarten Body Image Ariana Grande A Mother’s Help Dream Houses Fasting and Food for Ramadan ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ Dancing in the Streets A Comic Take on the News The N.B.A. Finals ‘Wonder Woman’

What do you think this image, chart or cartoon is saying?

In Your Head Money and Happiness Moving and Sitting Policing Large Man Speech Bubble Above and Below Lady Liberty #2 Across the Fence Blue and Red Map, 2012 Red and Blue Map, 2016 Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down Lady Liberty #1 In Case of Emergency Break Glass The American Dream ‘Check-In’ Norman Rockwell’s ‘Four Freedoms’ Hair-Raising Answers to an Open-Ended Question Shredding Blue and Red Mr. Olympia A Seasonal Scene 100 Days Social Media

What’s your opinion on this issue?

Device Addiction? Self-Driving Cars An Invention the World Needs Creepy Clowns Beyoncé at the V.M.A.s Parenting Robot Greeters Arriving at Ellis Island Colin Kaepernick’s Protest Pennies Feminism An 18-Karat Throne Mandatory Voting? Tattoos A Hug Seen Around the World Mermaid School Anger Rooms Dabbing in Congress Hitler and History Gender and ‘Genderless’ Solving Global Problems Fashion-Show Diversity The Role of Public Broadcasting Children and Cell Phones U.F.O.s ‘A Man Needs His Nuggs’ Parenting Skills

Images for STEM Classes: Questioning, Explaining and Solving

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A Fire Hose of Lava Math Problem Fall Foliage Basketball Dreams Insect Mysteries Goats in a Tree

Want more writing prompts?

We also have over 1000 Student Opinion questions we’ve asked over the years, gathered together in two lists: 650 prompts for narrative and personal writing and 401 prompts for argumentative writing . Plus, we have a collection of “ 40 intriguing images to make students think ,” taken from four years of our weekly “What’s Going On in This Picture?” feature.

IMAGES

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  2. Creative Journal Topics for Students

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  3. 55 Creative Writing Ideas for Kids • JournalBuddies.com

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  4. Creative Writing Picture Prompt worksheet

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  5. Free 15+ Story Settings Description Writing Frames

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  6. Creative Writing for Kids vol 1 by Amanda J. Harrington

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VIDEO

  1. Creative Writing Activities to teach kids Writing || APS

  2. Nature Arts & Creative Writing in Outdoor Schools

  3. How To Raise Kids Who Write

  4. Happy Writing Starts with EASYgraph

  5. Creative Writing Book

  6. How to start #creative writing to our kids step by step

COMMENTS

  1. 125 Picture Prompts for Creative and Narrative Writing

    Now we're rounding up years of these storytelling prompts all in one place. Below you'll find 125 photos, illustrations and GIFs from across The New York Times that you can use for both ...

  2. 150 Inspiring Picture Writing Prompts (Free Google Slides)

    150 Inspiring Picture Writing Prompts To Spark Creativity (Free Google Slides) Use a picture to write a thousand words! Creative writing is a challenge for many students, often because they can't come up with anything to write about. That's why we love picture writing prompts. Each one sparks the imagination and helps young writers jump ...

  3. 85+ Picture Writing Prompts For Kids (+ Free Printable)

    85+ Picture Writing Prompts For Kids (+ Free Printable) December 18, 2021. A picture is worth a thousand words. So how many words can you write for these 85 picture writing prompts for kids and grow-ups alike! Pictures, whether something as simple as an apple or as complex as an action scene can spark the imagination in more ways than one.

  4. 70 Picture Prompts for Creative Writing (with Free Slides)

    Writing Center. Print cards or writing pages with these images on them and put them in a writing center for your students to discover at their own pace. Specific Skills. Use story picture prompts to help kids work on specific writing skills. For example, you could work on descriptive writing by having them describe the setting of the picture in ...

  5. 20 Picture Writing Prompts for Kids

    1. Choose pictures that aren't so clear-cut. Ambiguous images lead to more brainstorming, providing plenty of room for interpretation and creativity. 2. Give students ample time to look at and study the image. 3. Give them 5-10 minutes to write everything they can think about when they look at the picture. 4.

  6. 144 Picture Prompts to Inspire Student Writing

    Write a short story, poem or memoir inspired by this illustration. Related Picture Prompt Glenn Harvey. Trapped Inside. Wilderness Wayfaring. Magical Chores. I'm Sorry. Dollar Bills. Dinosaurs ...

  7. 145 Picture Prompts to Inspire Student Writing

    These short, accessible, image-driven prompts invite students to pen short stories, poems and memoirs; share experiences from their lives; analyze illustrations, graphs and charts; and tell us ...

  8. Kids Think Wide

    Engage your class in collaborative storytelling through scaffolded Choose Your Own Adventure group writing. Ignite creativity and teamwork today. Explore Adventures. Free Adventures and Counting…. Captivating picture prompts for creative writing to spark students imagination. Perfect for elementary students each picture has an accompanying ...

  9. 40+ Instant Download Picture Writing Prompts for Kids!

    There are two creative writing prompts on each page. Some have a list of questions, a sentence starter, or story ideas. Feel free to ignore or alter any of those. Definitely make it your own! Once you have the files printed, cut each page in half. Allow your student to randomly pick one image every week. Consider making it a Monday warm-up or a ...

  10. 300 Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

    Which is better, winter or summer? Write about the reasons why you think winter or summer is better. #4. Write about what would it be like if you had an alligator as a pet. #5. If you had $1,000, what would you buy and why? #6. Write a story using these 5 words: apple, train, elephant, paper, banjo. #7.

  11. 60 Picture Writing Prompts for Kids to Spark Their Imaginations

    People. A picture of a person. A picture of a mother and her child. A picture of a crowd of people. A picture of a superhero. A picture of an actor or actress. A picture of a person hugging another person. There are many reasons why using pictures of people is a good idea for a creative writing prompt for children.

  12. 300+ Writing Prompts for Kids (+ Free Printable)

    This is the ultimate bank of over 300 writing prompts for kids. From creative writing prompts to journal ideas and even quick poetry prompts.Whenever you're bored or need a little inspiration, here are some fun ideas for kids writing prompts that can be used over and over again.. This list of creative writing prompts for kids includes a mixture of writing exercises, short story ideas ...

  13. 27 Amazing Picture Writing Prompts for Kids » JournalBuddies.com

    Picture writing prompts consist of an image — and sometimes a short sentence — to prompt a student to begin writing. They are a fun addition to any writing practice, and, best of all, kids love them. Indeed, visual prompts are an incredible writing tool. And soon you'll see some amazing hand-drawn and totally unique picture writing ...

  14. 100+ Fun Creative Writing Prompts for Kids (and Kids at Heart!)

    Give these creative writing prompts a try! Recommended time for each: 10+ minutes. 24. Write a letter to the most used piece of furniture in your home. 25. Write a letter to a best friend or good friend about a wild adventure you'd like to take together. 26. Write a letter to your favorite movie star. 27.

  15. Over 140 Picture Prompts to Inspire Student Writing

    Since 2016, we've been featuring these images in our daily Picture Prompts: short, image-driven posts that invite a variety of kinds of student writing. Teachers tell us they use these prompts ...

  16. Picture Writing Prompts for Kids (With Free Printables!)

    There are 20 pages total - 10 different picture prompts, each with two kinds of lined paper to write on. Regular lines for older kids and handwriting lines for younger kids. I hope your child enjoys these FREE picture prompts and has fun creating exciting stories about each one!

  17. 20 Free Picture Writing Prompts for kids with Vocabulary

    Let your child imagination flow smoothly with these fantastic picture writing prompts. These prompts will provide them with plenty of new ideas that they never have thought about. The prompts also come with writers checklist. Let children take ownership of their writing and self-assess what they have written. To save the free sheets just click ...

  18. 101 Picture Writing Prompts To Unlocking Creativity for Every Writer

    A long list of picture writing prompts. 1. A secret garden hidden behind an old, ivy-covered wall, with flowers that glow in the dark. 2. A futuristic city floating in the sky, connected by transparent walkways. 3. An underwater town with buildings made of coral and colorful fish swimming in the streets. 4. A world where trees are as tall as ...

  19. 225 Fun & Free Creative Writing Prompts for Kids in All Grade Levels

    Writing prompts are meant to unlock creativity. They're story starters designed to inspire creative thinking. They can take you to places you've been or recall an important time in your life. But mostly, they're useful tools for teachers to inspire writing growth in students from grade school to high school.

  20. 52 Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

    52 of the Best Fiction Writing Prompts for Kids. Your children can use these ideas as creative inspiration as they practice writing words and sentences. PreK and early elementary-aged children who haven't learned to write yet might enjoy drawing pictures to tell their stories, or they could tell a story out loud to their family. Creative ...

  21. 57 Fun Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

    With many kids learning from home due to Covid-19, easy-to-organize educational activities for students are more important than ever. Writing helps improve students' creativity, communication skills, and ability to focus, among other benefits.

  22. A Year of Picture Prompts: Over 160 Images to Inspire Writing

    We also have over 1000 Student Opinion questions we've asked over the years, gathered together in two lists: 650 prompts for narrative and personal writing and 401 prompts for argumentative ...

  23. The Images Shed

    Let these images spark your memory of a joyous moment you spent with family, friends, or by yourself. You may choose one image or link a few together to tell/show a deeper-more detailed memoir. With thanks to Stephen Yost - Neil Armstrong Middle School - Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, USA for the pictures and ideas.