First of two free writing prompts
For high school English classes
English teachers typically assign students to write about literature.
Savvy English teachers give expository essay writing prompts drawn
from across their curriculum. They know such authentic
promote learning of content
emphasize the importance of language topics
other than literature
attract less artsy students
connect English to other classes
tie English to current events
On this page I've discussed one of two free writing prompts suitable
for high school English language arts and explained in some detail
how to use it.
Note please, that although I refer to these as expository writing
prompts for 5 paragraph essays, I define a 5-paragraph
essay as one that is planned using a specific critical thinking
Using the strategy to develop one of these free writing prompts
might result in the writer deciding to present the material other
than in a traditional thesis and support format.
Free writing prompt on passive voice
The first writing prompt deals with the use of language. It takes
a rule from grammar texts and attempts to get students to think
about how it applies in real life.
You would use this prompt when you were teaching the concepts
of active and and passive voice in your class grammar study.
Although students will not be writing a comparison
essay, they must be able to compare and contrast the characteristics
of active voice and passive voice in order to prepare to write.
Students for whom this prompt is appropriate
This is a prompt designed for writers who are either:
There is adequate structure so beginners can handle the
writing aspects of the assignment even if they have difficulty
understanding the concepts of active and passive voice.
Structure of the writing prompt
The prompt begins with a statement of the context for
the assignment. Students can easily turn this material into introductory
paragraphs for their essays.
Next, the assignment is described in broad terms.
Note the green highlight indicates the prompt topic,
the underscore indicates the assertion about
the topic that writers must have their thesis
statements. As you keep reading, you'll notice that the topic
is mentioned several times.
Next come details to help writers develop their essays appropriately.
For inexperienced writers, essay development is one of the more
difficult aspects of the writing process. The writing prompt suggests
options students may use in developing their responses.
The students' three choices include:
Providing outlets for imagination within the context of expository
writing encourages students who dislike literature to see value
in fiction. At the same time it gives creative students a chance
to do some writing they enjoy.
one that students can develop by logical inferences
from the definition of passive voice
one that students can develop by doing research
one that students can develop by creative fiction
The directions in each writing prompt should tell students what
you expect in terms of format. The directions below are only those
that pertain to this specific essay. You would want to
add information about your standards for all writing in your class.
I find it is better to specify a maximum word count than
a minimum count; in fact, it is preferable to giving a range.
You want students to focus on the content, not on writing a specific
number of words.
to see the thesis statement that responds to this first of my
two free prompts for high school English classes.