Lesson Plans

Innovative lessons/ideas for teaching creative writing, as well as samples of student writing resulting from the lesson. See complete submission guidelines here.

Reading Texts as a Prelude to Analysis

by Jason DeHart As a teacher in an undergraduate composition course for incoming freshmen, one of the great joys I have experienced is setting the stage for analytical writing with a variety of reading experiences. In fact, I have discovered a new-found love for analysis by teaching composition in this way. This process usually begins…

Dear America

by Matt Malyon The day after the 2016 election, I was scheduled to facilitate a creative writing workshop at our site in Skagit County Juvenile Detention. I’d awoken that morning into what felt like a new and darker version of America. Deep melancholy would be putting it mildly. By midmorning, I was working on the…

Exploring Candidates and Campaigning

by Jessie Paddock Objectives: Students will: Engage in close reading of tweets by 2020 presidential candidates. Consider the importance of evidence and action as the next steps of a protest. Expand protest signs to serve as pillars of an imaginary election campaign or use protest signs as an inspiration for a short piece of fiction…

Learning to Love the Language

by Rhoda Samkoff At the beginning of my teaching career one of my fifth-graders complained, “I have ideas, but I can’t make them come out my pencil!”  While my definition of successful creative writing is “the manipulation of words that results in a unique product of self-expression,” the student’s statement is a reminder that producing…

Using Poetry to Reach Across Disciplines

by Jason DeHart While I would occasionally meet students in my middle school classroom who loved poetry, by and large my students were reluctant to embrace the genre. I dealt with this resistance in a variety of ways, including reaching into other disciplines to bring in vocabulary words for review and practice in poetic form….

Search Results as Lyrical Launchpads

by Cal LaFountain  Grades: High school and college Learning Goals  In this lesson, students will use Internet search results to generate random language for the basis of a poem, story, or essay. Students may use search engines on their devices, a classroom computer, or, if a more analog strategy is desired, any nearby books that…

Two Poetry Prompts to Inspire Immigrant Teens

Bridging Borders With Words: Writing With Immigrant and Refugee Students This article is part of a series in Teachers & Writers Magazine on working with immigrant and refugee writers. Related content includes One Day You Will Be One of the Happier: The Voices and Poetry of Teen Immigrants, Poems Without Borders: Writing to Bear Witness,…

Found Poetry & Accessibility

by Donnie Welch I love using found poetry in my workshops! If you’re unfamiliar with the form, here’s a definition from the Academy of American Poets: “Found poems take existing texts and refashion them, reorder them, and present them as poems. The literary equivalent of a collage, found poetry is often made from newspaper articles,…

Defining the Self in College Application Essays

by Alice Pencavel Objectives for Students:  To connect observations of their external world with the nuances of their inner world. To garner a deepened understanding of how the senses inform good writing. To generate material students can use for college application essays. Guiding Questions:  Who are you in relation to your environment? What is “self”?…

Teachers & Writers Magazine

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