Lesson of the Day: The Greatest Creative Writing Lesson Plan Ever?!?!

I had just finished my “8 Simple Writing Lesson Plans” Teacher Guide when I came upon this gem of an Internet lesson plan:

The greatest creative writing activity ever!!!

The skeptical dog and I could relate.

I was skeptical.

After all, everything on the Internet is “the greatest” or “the best” or something  that will “blow your mind!” but I had to look. Now usually when the words “Internet” and “I just had to look” are combined, bad things happen, but I figured what’s the worst that could happen by clicking on

The greatest creative writing activity ever!!!?

Let’s take a look at it before commenting further.

Common Core Objectives

  • W.9-10.3 – Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
  • W.9-10.3b – Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, description, reflection, and multiple plot lines, to develop experiences, events, and/or characters.
  • W.9-10.3c – Use a variety of techniques to sequence events so that they build on one another to create a coherent whole.
  • W.9-10.3d – Use precise words and phrases, telling details, and sensory language to convey a vivid picture of the experiences, events, setting, and/or characters.

The lesson is simple.

1. Write the following questions on the board. These questions–actually the lesson itself–comes from Adam Simpson’s Blog.

  • How long have you been on the planet?
  • Why did you go there?
  • Describe the two people who are with you.
  • Why is your spaceship damaged?
  • When you decided to leave your ship, how far did you walk?
  • What were you looking for?
  • When did you realize that someone was following you?
  • Describe the creature.
  • While you were running away, you tripped and fell. What happened?
  • What was the big surprise at the end of your story?

2. Start asking these questions as soon as the bell rings. The initial responses may be literal, so a little suggestion to be creative might help. This question and answer serves as a brainstorm. If more brainstorming is necessary, instruct students to grab a partner and discuss these questions for a minute or two.

3. Instruct students to write a story (about 1 page) that answers the questions on the board, in order. Emphasize that it should be a story, and not a list of answers.

4. Read some to the class.

I decided to do the lesson.

I still wasn’t totally convinced that this was

The greatest creative writing activity ever!!!

but I gave it a shot, figuring that the worst case scenario would be I get an easy day.

But what happened is I found out that this assignment is, in fact,

The greatest creative writing activity ever!!!

Of course, I couldn’t just leave the lesson as is. I had to add my own usability to it. So I created a rubric and a graphic organizer. I was going to put it in my “8 Simple Writing Lesson Plans” Teacher Guide but thought I would just make it a free sample.

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