Finding a Story That Needs to Be Told

scaffolding finding a story.jpg
The "blank page" syndrome . . .
Begin with a story prompt as a "graphic organizer" that enables choice AND targeting the topical area used to address standards and skills. Even then, immature inexperienced writers often freeze when facing a blank page. Here come story starter ideas to use as scaffolding.* Choose a strategy or two that suits the story prompt and developmental needs.

Just as builders put scaffolding around a building while it is being built, so scaffolding can be used to support a person's learning. By studying examples of texts, discussing appropriate or useful language, doing practice exercises and using structured outlines, all in collaboration with the teacher and peers, students can build bridges between reading and writing which they could not normally build on their own. New writers who are 'scaffolded' in this way move from being dependent on the teacher's words to being independent and able to be self-starters and self-directed in approaching ANY tasks.

* According to Harris and Hodges in their The Literacy Dictionary (1996), "SCAFFOLDING" is NOT permanent . . .
"In learning, the gradual withdrawal of adult (e.g. teacher) support, as through instruction, modelling, questioning, feedback etc., for a child's performance across successive engagements, thus transferring more autonomy to the child."

Growing StoryTelling Skills

Explore ideas for story starters or ideas, prompting for plots points or even through an entire story making process. Consider using story prompt programs which support customizing with your own images or content like "Write About This and "Tell About This" or "Brainstormr". Click on individual tiles below to watch videos and/or make comments. BlendSpace supports community conversations on curated resources.

Looking forward to your comments PLUS feel free to send any other story starter resources not listed to If you have student media-based storytelling products you could share - it would be such a gift to be able to celebrate your students as well as inspire others that our kids are amazing! AND it helps me learn from you as well!