3 Ways to Spark Creative Writing Ideas for Homeschool High School Students

Get your homeschool high school students writing great stories in no time with these three ways to spark creative writing ideas!

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Storytelling comes naturally to some people. My oldest son, for instance, has already written his first screenplay at 19 years old. It’s the first in a trilogy that he already has planned out.

That kid can tell a story with so much detail…he gets it from his Papa (my dad). He has never had a problem coming up with topics to write about (or talk about)!

My oldest son is never at a loss for words! He gets it from his Papa.

My other two kids are a different story. Neither of them is quite as talkative as their older brother, and both are a little more likely to just stick to the basic facts when recounting a tale.

Now, they have both written some great stories over the years. But it always takes them a long time to decide on story writing topics. Then, adding details to develop the characters, setting, plot, etc. just doesn’t come easily.

All too often, creative writing activities have turned into a dreaded chore for them instead of the exciting endeavor of imagination and inspiration that I had envisioned.

I know we aren’t the only homeschooling family who struggles with this. So, what can we do?

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Creative Writing Ideas Pinterest
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Spark Creative Writing Ideas with Story Prompts

Sometimes a story prompt is all a kid needs to take off on their own. You can find hundreds of ideas with a quick Google search.

A fun little brainstorming session might do the trick! You start the story, then have everyone take turns adding to it. It’s always fun to see how the storyline evolves! Get the whole family in on this one!

For some quick ideas, we like to use Bardsy’s Famous Story Spinner. A simple click will give you a character, a world (setting), and a theme. You can keep clicking until you get a spark of inspiration.

Here’s a video of the Story Spinner in action…

Use Bardsy’s Famous Story Spinner for Creative Writing Ideas!

You can get access to all writing tools, video courses, & lesson plans for only $8.99 per month with your Bardsy Monthly Membership! Cancel Anytime – No Problem.

Spark Creative Writing Ideas with Familiar Stories

Now, I’m definitely not promoting plagiarism here. We’re just looking for inspiration.

Maybe your student could call a grandparent and chat about stories from their childhood. They could watch old family videos. You could have them tell you about their favorite book or movie.

The idea is to use those storylines as a jumping-off point to get the basic idea for their own story.

Bardsy has a great exercise that has students recall a fairytale and re-write it with a different twist. In their Writing Warmup learning activity, they take students through the process of changing up one element of the story of Cinderella and then adjusting the rest of the story to fit with it.

My kids got a kick out of doing a mashup of The Three Little Pigs and Goldilocks and The Three Bears. It had me laughing out loud!

Spark Creative Writing Ideas with Bardsy's Super Character Creation Kit
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Spark Creative Writing Ideas with Bardsy’s Super Character Creation Kit

Bardsy Homeschool believes that creative writing supercharges every academic skill.

Storytelling isn’t extra-curricular, it’s trans-curricular.

It not only bolsters your learner’s
ability to absorb, process, retain and retrieve information across disciplines, it also increases their tenacity while tackling complex material, subject-specific vocabulary, and new concepts.

Creative writing has even been proven to raise math and science performance.

The Bardsy Homeschool Method breaks storytelling down into two complementary steps: develop and assemble.

This method is woven into their online tools to minimize struggle and make writing accessible and fun.

Now, you can see this method in action with their online Super Character Toolkit.

Download Bardsy’s Homeschool Super Character Kit and get started on your story today!

This comprehensive kit includes:

  • Create a Super Character Lesson Plan and Activity
  • Bardsy’s Super Character Video Course – Part 1
  • Three Extensive Character Building Templates
  • Everything You Need To Get Creative And Get Writing!

Spark Creative Writing Ideas with a Change of Scenery

Most of us are spending a lot more time at home these days. It’s hard to be inspired when you never have a change of scenery.

Simply getting out of the house might be a great way to get those creative writing ideas flowing. People watching or exploring nature are both great ways to spark the imagination!

Find Topics to Write About in Nature
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Spark creative writing ideas by getting out in nature!

As you observe people or animals interacting with each other, make up dialogue to go along with their actions and see how a story unfolds. Make sure you do this in a respectful and discreet way, of course!

Look for story ideas as you:

  • Take a walk or bike ride in your neighborhood.
  • Go for a drive around your town.
  • Find a nature park to explore.
  • Do an outdoor scavenger hunt in your city.
  • Get lunch at a local restaurant where you can sit out on the patio and people watch (with proper social distancing, of course).
  • Go camping at a state park (or in your backyard). Tell stories around the campfire for practice. Don’t forget the s’mores!
Homeschool High School Outside
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A change of scenery can be a great way to spark creative writing ideas!

Now it’s time for those creative writing ideas to come alive!

You’ve taken all these great steps to spark creative writing ideas for your homeschool high school students…now what?

I’m so glad you asked!

Now you give your students the tools they need to organize and develop those ideas into a unique and engaging story! What kind of tools?

Well, some people can take a blank piece of paper or word processing screen and turn it into a bestselling novel. Most of us…not so much.

Creative Writing Ideas
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Staring at a blank page can be intimidating! Give your writer some structured writing activities to help them get started.

Thankfully, there are tools available to the rest of us that will give us a little guidance and structure to help our inner storyteller emerge.

Graphic organizers and storyboards can help visual learners see the story before putting it into words.

The key is to spend time developing each element of the story:

  • Setting
  • Characters
  • Plot
  • Conflict
  • Theme

Bardsy offers a complete set of templates to help your homeschool high school students think through each of these story elements and then easily organize them into a well-written story they will be proud to share!

Creative Writing Ideas
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Bardsy’s Propsero tool offers templates to help you develop every element of the story!

Why is creative writing important?

Does your homeschool high school student question why they should be required to write stories?

It’s a valid question. No one really wants to spend their time doing something that doesn’t create value for themselves or someone else.

I don’t know about you, but I am not a fan of busywork! I want my kids to engage in meaningful learning activities. Thankfully, creative writing has far-reaching effects on a person’s development and well-being.

Creative writing fosters critical thinking skills, improves understanding of math and science, builds confidence, and nurtures mental health. You can read more about the benefits of creative writing at Bardsy in their article, Why Writing?

You can get access to all writing tools, video courses, & lesson plans for only $8.99 per month with your Bardsy Monthly Membership! Cancel Anytime – No Problem.

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Get the FREE Goal-Setting Starter Pack for Teens printable!

How have you helped spark creative writing ideas for your homeschool high school student?

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This post was proofread by Grammarly.

I love to share my passion for family, faith, learning, and adventure! I am a worship pastor's wife, a homeschool mom, a former public school teacher and counselor, and a Ph.D. in educational psychology. My heart is to encourage and support families who are homeschooling kids with ADHD, homeschooling high school, and raising teenagers. I'm so excited for you to follow along on this joyous journey!

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