4 Top Tips for Super Short Story Writers

We certainly love a good story! That’s why we wanted to share some of our top tips to help you become an awesome short story writer.

Have you heard of 500 Words?

BBC Radio 2 are holding a 500 Word competition and entries are open until 23rd February. This fantastic competition is now one of the most successful story writing competitions for children in the world with 123,436 children having entered in 2016!

Why not give it a go? To get you started, here are four of our top tips for all you budding story writers out there.

Brainstorm Ideas

Before starting a story, it’s always good to create a plan. Your students might want to consider their target audience, the theme of the story and characters and their traits.

We’ve a Mind Map Topic Tool to help your students do just that.

Mind Map Literacy (English/Literacy) – Organise ideas and concepts.

  • England: Years 1 – 6
  • Scotland: First* – Second***
  • Wales: Years 1 – 7
  • N. Ireland: P1 – P7

Create an Effective Plot

The key to any story is an effective plot that’s going to leave readers gripped. Before getting into the story, consider these questions:

  • Who?
  • What?
  • When?
  • Where?
  • Why
  • How?

Once each question has been answered, students can then piece each bit together to help create a paragraph of the story.

Check out the Teacher Resource Pack to find some handy writing templates! 

Have a Clear Beginning, Middle and End

Great stories always have a clear structure and a beginning, middle and end are easily defined as the three parts that make up a story. When put together, they may make a story complete.

We’ve a great Activity to help students with this.

Sandy Stories (English/Literacy) – Identify the beginning, middle and end of a story and consider the purpose of each.

  • England: Year 2
  • Scotland: First*
  • Wales: Year 2
  • N. Ireland: P3

Writing Prompts

If students are stuck for a bit of inspiration, we’ve got two Topic Tools which provide ideas to help with creative thinking as well as how to start a story.

Idea Generator (English/Literacy) A range of creative and critical thinking exercises.

  • England: Years 1 – 6 
  • Scotland: Early *** – Second ***
  • Wales: Years 1 – 6
  • N. Ireland: P2 – P7

Story Starter Machine (English/Literacy) – Ideas to write about.

  • England: Years 1 – 6
  • Scotland: Early *** – Second ***
  • Wales: Years 1 – 6
  • N. Ireland: P2 – P6

See the Story Starter Machine in action!

We hope you enjoyed our top tips! If you’ve got any, please do tweet them to us @educationcity.

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