ESL Activity: Interactive Writing
Materials: Creative writing prompt (below)
Directions: You can spend at least an hour doing this, and the kids will be reading, writing, laughing, and writing more. First, you hand out a writing prompt - a piece of paper on which the beginning of a story is already written (I have provided several examples below). Have the students read the introduction, then give them 5 or 10 minutes to continue writing the story. After the predetermined amount of time has passed, yell, "Stop!" at which time the students pass their papers clockwise. Each student now must read what has been written by another student, and they have another 5 or 10 minutes to continue the story. Keep going, passing papers clockwise, until the student has his/her original paper back. The student can then provide his/her own conclusion to the story.
Sample creative writing prompts:
If you want to extend this, you can make each student rewrite the entire story that they began, correcting all grammar and punctuation mistakes. Depending on the size of the class, you may need to alter the rules, or stipulate a 1 or 2 sentence maximum for each student. This exercise can take hours if you want it to, and the kids welcome taking a break from their usual writing books.