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We celebrate teachers who have created their own websites about teaching writing:


Corbett's
Always Write
Website
(Grades K-12)



Jodie's
Start to Learn
Website

(Kindergarten)



Holly's
Making Mathematicians
Website

(Grades K-12)



Brian's
Learning is Messy
Blog

(Grades 4-6)



Dena's
Write in the Middle
Website

(Grades 6-8)

Writing Prompts: For the Right Brain
inspiring students to be recklessly creative when beginning new writing

In 2001, we launched the WritingFix website with twenty-one interactive prompts. Many of those original prompts became our "Right-brained Prompt Collection," which has always been housed on this page. Since the beginning of WritingFix, this page of prompts has been one of our most popular destinations for writers!

WritingFix believes this:  No one writes with just the right side of his/her brain. The human brain is too complex and too cross-wired to ever believe that.

We do believe this too: Ideas that spark a writer's inspiration can start on the right-side of the brain.  And for that reason, all writing activities categorized on this page celebrate a right-brained approach to beginning a piece of writing.  This page celebrates approaches that are serendipitous and random.  This page celebrates approaches that are recklessly creative.   Devote part of your journal or your writer's notebook to ideas produced by right-brained prompts.

And don't neglect the left-side of your brain! We have a page of left-brained prompts so you can balance the type of pre-writing you ask your brain to do.

During the 2011-12 school year, we will be revising all of the prompts on this page so that they all feature a mentor text as part of the learning process! Keep checking back to see the newly revised prompts as they are introduced here!

Our Right-Brained Prompts are Organized into the Following Categories:

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A book recommendation for those who like this page:

Right-Brained Strategy #1...Serendipity Prompts!

Each of our serendipity prompts comes with a button-pressing game that's designed to make random ideas come together. Watch your students click through the buttons. Their eyes will light up when the random, serendipitous elements suddenly come together to make a writing idea occur in their heads.

"I think a lot more decisions are made on serendipity than people think. Things come across their radar screens and they jump at them."

     --Jay W. Lorsch, Harvard Business School


Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Character Descriptions

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Mem Fox's Tough Boris.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Story Titles

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Robert Munsch's
The Paper Bag Princess.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Character Names

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Bertrand Brinley's
The Mad Scientist's Club.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Superheroes

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Bob McLeod's
Superhero ABC.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Crazy Illustrations

This prompt can be enhanced by using
David Wiesner's
Flotsam.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Love Metaphors

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Pat Benatar's
"Love is a Batlefield."
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Fortune Cookies

This prompt can be enhanced by using
W. W. Jacob's
"The Monkey's Paw."
Recently Revised:
Three Serendipitous
Nouns

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Brian Cleary's
A Mink, a Fink, a Skating Rink.
Recently Revised:
Serendipitous
Plots & Conflicts

This prompt can be enhanced by using
chapter 7 of Fletcher's
Live Writing
More to Come!
More to Come!
More to Come!
Soon to be Revised!

 

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Right-Brained Strategy #2...Story Starters

Not every writer needs story-starters to make a piece of original writing happen, but for those who do, we proudly offer a variety of ways to start, and we hope you'll teach a little about grammar if you choose to share these with your students.

Story Starters:
Titles


This prompt can be enhanced by using
Chris Van Allsburgh's The Mysteries of Harris Burdick

Story Starters:
Participial Phrases


This prompt can be enhanced by using
Roni Schotter's The Boy Who Loved Words

Story Starters:
Sentences

This prompt can be enhanced by using
Chris Van Allsburgh's The Mysteries of Harris Burdick

 

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Right-Brained Strategy #3...Great Sentence Creators

Introduction

Great Sentence Theme:
Aviation

 

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Right-Brained Strategy #4...Who/What/When/Where Games

Introduction

"Hold the philosophy, hold the adjectives, just give us a plain subject and verb and perhaps a wholesome, nonfattening adverb or two."

--Larry McMurty, screenwriter and essayist

Who/What/Where/When Theme: Camping

This prompt can be enhanced by Marion Dane Bauer's When I Go Camping with Grandma.

Who/What/Where/When Theme: Weather

This prompt can be enhanced by William Steig's Brave Irene.

 

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Right-Brained Strategy #5...Alliterative Sparks

Introduction

"Writing poetry is the hard manual labor of the imagination."

--Ishmael Reed, author

Random Alliteration: Letter A

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Right-Brained Strategy #6...Visual Prompts

Introduction

"Writing poetry is the hard manual labor of the imagination."

--Ishmael Reed, author

Writer's Notebook
Photos

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Copyright 2014 - Corbett & Dena Harrison, Educational Consultants, LLC, and WritingFix- All Rights Reserved.
Please, share the resources you find on these pages freely with fellow educators, but please leave any page citations on handouts intact, and please give authorship credit to the cited teachers who created these wonderful lessons and resources. Thanks in advance for honoring other educators' intellectual property.

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