Creative Writing Activities & Literary Analysis Exercises | Literary Devices

Grade Levels
9th - 12th
Formats Included
  • PDF
45 pages
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  1. Struggling to make your yearly plans for writing both practical and fun for your students? Students can be very resistant to writing instruction. Some are bored out of their minds by years of useless, monotonous exercises, and have stopped believing that they can actually learn to become better wri
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Want to get your classes to dig deeper in their analysis of literature while having fun with creative writing?

Integrate creative writing into your class every day with these innovative prompts and exercises.

This resource will help you answer your biggest questions as a teacher of writing.

How can I get my students to write?

Make it fun, make it authentic, and give them choice. These ten creative exercises can be used over and over in your classroom. Students like them because they are low-pressure, different, and amusing. You will like them because they get students writing, thinking about literature, and learning to the appreciate the elements of writing from the inside out.

How can I make writing fun for my students?

Don’t use the word “essay” until they are already excited about their topic. By beginning small and informal but specific and fun, you will engage students before they even realize that they are doing a writing exercise.

How can I get my students to move beyond the standard five-paragraph essay?

Students are bored by standard persuasive essays about school recess or lunch choices, and they have written about their summer vacation more times than they can count. By giving them prompts that focus on specific elements of strong writing, you will empower them to transform the structure, style, and voice of their writing.

How can I make writing a priority in my classroom?

Lessons that revolve around elements of writing will make sure that you don’t teach writing as an afterthought or simply assign a paper at the end of a book without ever teaching students what makes for strong, interesting, and creative writing. Exercises that require little time ensure that you can fit in writing to every lesson.

How can I teach writing in a way that will engage students?

Start small and make it different. By beginning each of these lessons with a quick, low-pressure, in-class writing, you will help students avoid writer’s block, which is almost always caused by paralyzing perfectionism or fear of failing.

How can I help my students preform better on common core assessments and the new SAT?

For common core assessments and the new SAT, students are required to understand how elements of literature function to create meaning. One great way to insure that they understand how writing works is to get them writing themselves, and then to build on that base to examine literary texts. Until students have tried to create an impactful piece of poetry themselves, for example, they will never fully appreciate a poet’s choices. Where they apply, common core standards have been listed for exercises and prompts.

How can I take a break from the standard novels and plays?

With suggestions for 39 poems, stories, and essays to extend your discussion on different aspects of writing, there is enough material in these lessons to drop the standard plays and novels for ten weeks of the school year.

How can I shift the focus of my classes away from plot and towards analysis of literary elements?

By getting students to examine how writing works, both by trying different strategies and techniques themselves as well as by giving them discussion questions that probe them to understand the way elements function to create meaning, you will empower them to perform better on common core assessments by moving away from a focus on plot.

This resource contains:

--10 fun creative writing exercises which you can use over and over in your classes

--40 writing prompts for longer assignments to extend the exercises once you get your students excited to write

--39 suggestions for poems, non-fiction essays, and short stories to extend the lessons and add depth to your lesson plans

--ready-to-go slides for each exercise and set of follow-up questions so that you always have a fun activity ready for your classes even if you forget to prepare

Total Pages
45 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
2 months
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.
Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience.
Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
Provide a conclusion that follows from and reflects on what is experienced, observed, or resolved over the course of the narrative.


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