Ready, Set…Write


7 Idea Generators

Motivating children to write and enjoy the process, over several blog posts, I will share my secrets. Put the love of writing back into the hands of young learners.

Finding a topic, how many of us struggle with this essential step in the writing process? Do you have a child that does not enjoy writing or struggles to find the right topic?  I can help. Some days ideas and creativity may flow while others we need a little nudge.  On those particular days, what can you do to help?  Take a look at these 7 idea generators.


Fish Bowl

  • Have your child dream up a few of their favorite topics.  Type or write each idea onto a slip of paper. Keep those brainstorms in a bowl or paper bag.  When you see them struggling with a topic, have them “Go Fish” for one of their favorite themes.



  • We have all experienced moments of brilliance when our creativity generates an idea.  How many times have we neglected to write that thought down? Later, when we try to recall the notion, we can’t remember!  Have them take the opportunity to write the idea in a small notebook or a page, in their writing journal, dedicated to new topics. (My oldest daughter keeps her ideas tucked within this old phone.) These ideas, however small, will spark their imagination for writing.


Theme Pull

  • Working around a theme or project?  Generate a variety of words or phrases about that topic.  Type or write down those ideas and glue to craft sticks. For added fun, place into decorative container.  Have children “draw straws” to spark a creative idea or writing prompt.

Utilize Pinterest (for older children)

  • Set up a Pinterest writing board.  Ether you or your older student can Pin items of interest or phrases that trigger their creative thinking.  Use these visuals as a way to prompt their writing and generate interest in a writing theme.  Possible ideas for writing could include: designing recipes, drafting DIY building projects, writing  clear directions, formal procedural writing and fantastical stories.

Nature Walk

  • Use their learning style to tap into their creativity. Take your children on a nature walk around the neighborhood, local park or just in your backyard. Have them research sounds, critters they see, objects they feel and explore using all their senses.  Consider listing ideas within a set time for a game like approach.  Ideas can be drawn, photographed or written in their notebook.

Scholastic Story Scrambler

  • Children will love using this scholastic webpage for fun writing prompts.   Choose adventure, fantasy, sci-fi or scramble, enter your name and age then hit enter. These age appropriate idea generators are fun, interactive and creative.


Make your own comic strip at ReadWriteThink.Org!


  • Everyone struggles with the writing process.  So, whenever teaching writing, I demonstrate how to problem solve a mini dilemma before my students write.  Depending on the issue, in this case generating ideas, I pretend to be preplexed on choosing a topic.  How do I structure this lesson?  I sit down with a blank sheet of paper and walk through the process of generating ideas.  I literally talk them through how I pull ideas into my writing by using one of the methods above.

Ready, Set… Write!


3 thoughts on “Ready, Set…Write

  1. Love this one!! Jack is always talking about wanting to build some kind of rocket/space craft and not sure where to begin. (I have no idea either as he wants it to actually fly 😬)! A start would be to write down what he wants it to do. I think I’ll have him type it up as he is more willing and interested to do so on computer as opposed to on paper. Steps at a time.😉

  2. Pingback: 6 Steps to Successful Planning | Venture2Learn

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