100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love

, Staff Writer
Updated June 24, 2020
100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    FatCamera / E+ / Getty Images
    Used under Getty Images license

No matter what grade they are in, kids will love these fun and inspiring elementary writing prompts. The concepts are appropriate for all grades, and they will spark interest in kindergarteners and 5th graders alike.

Journal Prompts for Kids

These journal prompts will appeal to children of all ages. Kindergarteners may write a single word or sentence with help from an adult, while older kids may write short paragraphs.

  • What makes your school special?
  • How do kids learn to be kind?
  • What happens when people can't work together?
  • What makes a good friend?
  • What would you like to invent?
  • Have you ever broken something? What happened?
  • What do you like to do when you're not at school?
  • Have you ever had an imaginary friend?
  • What do you like about how you look?
  • What is the best thing on the school playground? Why?

Question Prompts for Elementary Students

Kids of all ages love open-ended questions that encourage them to think about their lives. These question writing prompts work for every elementary grade:

  • Who is your favorite movie character?
  • What are you really good at doing?
  • What do you want to do better?
  • How do you cheer up a friend who is sick?
  • What do you find annoying?
  • What kind of gift is the best to give?
  • How do you feel about talking in front of people?
  • What makes someone a good babysitter?
  • How do you feel about surprises?
  • What superpower would you like to have?

Fun and Funny "What if" Prompts

"What if" prompts get kids to use their imaginations, an important skill for a writer of any age. They'll love these fun writing prompts for kids, whether they write one sentence or a whole page:

  • What if you could bring an animal to school?
  • What if you had a time machine?
  • What if you grew up to be taller than the school?
  • What if you were the teacher?
  • What if you were a baby again?
  • What if cows could drive cars?
  • What if you could only see the color yellow?
  • What if the president were a kid?
  • What if you had a friend who spoke a different language?
  • What if you lived in a swimming pool?

Seasonal Writing Prompts for Kids

Kids' lives change with the seasons, from the clothing they wear to the outdoor activities they enjoy. These writing prompts have plenty of natural inspiration:

  • What do you do outside in the winter?
  • Does it snow where you live? What do you think about snow?
  • What do you like about autumn?
  • What is your favorite fall food?
  • What do you like about the season right now?
  • Do you like hot weather or cold weather? Why?
  • What does spring smell like?
  • Have you ever jumped in a puddle? If not, imagine it.
  • What do you like to wear in the summer?
  • Pretend you are a tree. What happens to you as the seasons change?

Entertaining "Finish the Story" Prompts

The key to getting children interested in writing is making it fun and imaginative. These exciting "finish the story" prompts will help them practice their creative writing:

  • Once upon a time, a child woke up as a turtle….
  • The car stopped in front of my house, and a clown got out….
  • Three friends went on a trip to the moon. The best thing about it was….
  • Once, I rode a unicorn to school….
  • My teacher came to my house for dinner. We talked about….
  • One day, my mom and dad switched jobs….
  • I was walking in the woods, and someone called my name. I looked down and saw it was a frog….
  • A boy had a dream he was a pirate and woke up on a pirate ship….
  • The teacher's necklace is missing, and only one person knows what happened….
  • A new kid comes to school and says he is from 1900….

Descriptive Writing Prompts

Descriptive writing helps kids practice the skills they need to write expository essays and narratives. These writing prompts for kids can help:

  • Write about something special you own.
  • What does your bed look like?
  • What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? What does it taste like?
  • What will your grown-up life be like?
  • Describe a beautiful sunset.
  • Imagine you are walking in the woods. What is it like?
  • Pick someone you love. What does that person look like?
  • What is the best art project or picture you have ever made?
  • Imagine you invent a new kind of car in the future. What does it look like?
  • Pick an animal. Talk about it without saying what it is.

Opinion Writing Prompts

Making claims and forming opinions is important for becoming a critical thinker and mature writer. The key to inspiring great opinion writing is to ask questions kids care about:

  • What makes someone a good teacher?
  • Should there be school in the summer?
  • What is the best time of day?
  • Should everyone wear the same thing to school?
  • Do you think cookies or muffins are better? Why?
  • What makes a school a good place to learn?
  • How can kids protect the planet?
  • What kind of food is junk food?
  • How old should people be to get a job? Why?
  • What is a rule you think is unfair? Why?

Picture Prompts for Elementary Students

Picture prompts are a great way to inspire writing, especially for younger kids. These fun picture prompts will get those pencils moving. First, here is a set of prompts relating to dogs:

100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    Darwin Wiggett / DigitalVision / Getty Images
    Used under Getty Images license
  • What if your teacher turned into a dog?
  • How smart do you think dogs are? Why?
  • If you could teach a dog any trick, what would you choose?
  • What is your favorite kind of dog?
  • What if dogs could say words instead of barking?

Next, here are writing prompts that can accompany this whimsical image of a boy flying in a paper boat:

100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    100 Elementary Writing Prompts Kids Will Love With Printable
    Juana Mari Moya / Moment / Getty Images
    Used under Getty Images license
  • Why do you think some balloons float?
  • Where would you go if you could fly anywhere?
  • Would you want to ride in a balloon boat like the picture? Why or why not?
  • Do you think something like the picture could really happen? Why or why not?
  • Who would you take with you on a trip in a floating boat?

Narrative Writing Prompts for Kids

Summarizing events and putting things in order help kids learn to organize their writing in a way readers can understand. Whether they're in kindergarten or 5th grade, these narrative writing prompts will help:

  • On my last birthday….
  • I got mad when….
  • Imagine you had a pretend animal for a pet. How would you train it?
  • Have you ever gotten lost? What happened?
  • Pick a person. How did you meet?
  • What happens in your favorite story?
  • Have you been scared? What happened to scare you?
  • Write a story about exploring an empty house.
  • Imagine you find a magic key. Write a story about what you do with it.
  • If you could spend a whole day with your mom or dad, what would you do together?

Poetry Writing Prompts

Creative writing lesson plans are a great way for kids to learn self-expression. These poetry prompts will fit in your lesson plan and work for any grade, although kindergarteners may need a little help from an adult:

  • Write a poem about a thunderstorm.
  • How do you feel about your parents? Write a poem.
  • Write a poem in the shape of a cat.
  • Have you ever had to stop doing something you wanted to keep doing? Write a poem.
  • Write a poem about the color red.
  • What is the prettiest tree you have seen? Write a poem about it.
  • Write a poem using the letters in your name.
  • Write a poem about how you feel when you are alone.
  • What is your favorite holiday? Write a poem about it.
  • Write a poem about your favorite food.

Inspire Kids to Write

While these elementary writing prompts work for all ages, it's also good to inspire young students with prompts for their own grade. For instance, 1st grade writing prompts should be all about fun, giving reluctant writers the motivation to learn. As children get older, the writing world opens up. They need a variety of 4th grade writing prompts for everything from poetry to descriptive writing. No matter what age kids are, inspiring them to write is important work.