Homeschool writing center ideas for elementary ages

by | Jul 15, 2019 | Writing Games & Activities

These homeschool writing center ideas for elementary kids focus on fun writing activities such as silly sentences, character diaries, and family portraits.

Homeschool writing center ideas and activities can reinforce the composition skills you’re teaching through your homeschool writing curriculum. The kids will love practicing writing in a low-key setting.

Whether you create a basket of materials by the sofa or a stand alone writing desk in the family room, try these different homeschool writing center ideas to spark excitement!

1. Picture Book Mail

Place a collection of favorite picture books in a basket. Ask children to read one or more of the books. Then, invite them to dictate or write a letter to one of the characters. What could they say in the letter? When finished, have them place the letter in a decorated envelope. Add a sticker for a stamp! Later, you can respond to the letter as the character your child wrote to.

Related activity: Friendly letter boogie

2. “And Now, a Word From Our Sponsors”

Gather a variety of household items. Place them in a box or basket in your writing center. When it’s time to write, ask each child to choose one item from the basket. Invite them to write an ad and create a poster for a product. Why would folks want to buy this item? Keep colored markers and construction paper close at hand, and encourage your kids to do rough drafts and sketches before they begin.

Related activity: Make a story basket

3. Character Diaries

At this center, have children create imaginary diaries of favorite characters from books or novels they’re reading. Then design your own diaries or buy inexpensive journal notebooks in styles for boys or for girls.

Related activity: Journaling across the curriculum

4. Round Robin Stories

Make available a timer and plenty of paper and pencils. Have each child begin to write a story based on the same pre-selected prompt. (See Creative Writing Prompts for ideas, or use one of the fun Writing Extras sets.)

Set the timer for three minutes. When finished, have the children exchange stories. Set the timer again for three minutes, and have each child begin adding to the story he or she just received. Write until the timer ends, and exchange papers again. Continue for several rounds, exchanging papers and adding content to everyone’s stories. When you’re ready, announce that it’s time to wrap up the story that’s in front of you.

Finally, let the original owner of each story read the tale aloud, and enjoy a good laugh!

Related activity: Round Robin printable writing prompt

5. Silly Sentences

Ask each child to write a set number of sentences, some factual and some outright ridiculous.

  • A factual sentence might be: Cheetahs are the fastest land mammals.
  • A silly sentence might be: Cheetahs drive sports cars.

Remind them to use correct capitalization and punctuation. When finished, have them share their sentences aloud. Which are true? Which are false?

Related activity: Write a silly poem

6. Self-Portraits in Words

Using mirrors as guides, have the kids draw pictures of themselves. Then ask them how they would define themselves in words. What describing words would they use? When they’re ready, have them write those words on the paper, surrounding the self-portrait.

Related activity: Use describing words

7. Family Portraits

Draw or paint portraits of each family member. Don’t forget all the pets! Bind the pages together with a hole punch and yarn. Under the picture, write a one-paragraph description of that person or pet. Include details such as characteristics, talents and interests, and favorite activities.

Related activity: Let’s write family stories

More homeschool writing center ideas to try

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For over two decades, Janet Wagner was an elementary and middle school teacher. She also had the honor of helping homeschool her two nieces. Janet and her husband live on the family farm in North Carolina. She enjoys a flexible life of homemaking, volunteering, reading, tutoring, and writing for her website.


WriteShop Primary A, B, and C

WriteShop Primary, an early-elementary writing curriculum for homeschoolers, is filled with games, such as Toss the Pepperoni. You’ll love these activities because they help you introduce important skills to your youngest writers. 

1 Comment

  1. Janet

    That’s true! I’ve never thought of these activity centers as being “subversive” ways to practice handwriting, but you’re absolutely “write”! Sometimes kids need more than just the penmanship practice pages!

    Reply

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