Starting Out With Your Own Writer’s Notebook!

Teachers who are embracing the Writer’s Notebook for the first time often request examples of the types of entries one might gather when starting out. Entries,  that will serve as examples to share with your students.

I am not a great fan of prompts, but if you are having trouble gaining the inspiration to launch your writing, maybe these ideas might prompt your thinking. They may prompt you to think of a connection to a topic/idea you feel more strongly about. Most importantly, I urge you to dive straight in and start filling the page with your words. Your own writing is such a powerful model for your students. I urge you to take the risk...
  • Write about the first book you remember reading 
  •  Create a Life Map to show events in your life so far
  • Write an entry about one of the items on your Life Map.
  • Write an entry over any topic of your choosing. Write about your personal opinion
  • Write a response to a book you are currently reading 
  • Write about the meaning behind a treasured object - what memories do you associate with that object? 
  • Create a plan for a memoir piece
  • Write a memoir including all the sensory details and what you discovered about yourself from that slice of life experience
  • Make a list of your personal choosing. E.g. Things that take too much time
  • Persuasive Writing - Choose an issue that is important to you, and write an opinion piece
  • Respond to an issue in the news
  • Write a short narrative about being sick as a child
  • Write about a place you would go right now and why
  • Write about something that was no fun at all
  • Make a list of things you still wish to do
  • Write about a time when you knew you were in trouble
  • How did you spend your pocket money?
  • Write about an embarrassing moment
  • Write about your relationship with weekends
  • Write a list about things you don’t need
  • Write about noise
  • Write about silence
  • Write about pretending
  • Make a list of questions you wished you had asked
  • Write about your feet
  • Write about your treasures
  • Write about something you wish you could still do
  • Write and DRAW about a place that is important to you
  • Create a map of a place you recall from your childhood


  1. I can't wait to get a copy of your book. I have a writer's notebook and I share it with the children I run into. I am retired now, but I keep pushing others to start a notebook.

  2. Barb, you serve as a bright light for writers of all ages. Keep up your good work spreading the news about the importance of teachers maintaining a Writer Notebook. I can't wait to get a copy of my book too. Next week hoepfully...


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