Usually we want our students to think outside of the box, but for this writing activity, I ask students to do just the opposite.

Last week I brought three ornate boxes into the classroom. We sat in a circle, and the students passed the boxes around. I told them that they could shake the boxes, but they weren’t allowed to open them. The students imagined something was inside the box that would give them special powers.

I told the class we were going to write a three part story. Here’s the breakdown:

Beginning –Describe the box and what is found inside.

Middle –What special power do you get? What happens when you get the power?

End –Do you get to keep the special power? Does it weaken? Get stronger?

I told students they could look inside the boxes if they worked hard during writing time. The students enjoyed writing these stories. Here’s one example.

The Magical Nickel

Today I went outside, and I saw a box. It was a big, green, glowing box. I went by it and a magic nickel just came flying out. I soon figured out that it was a magical nickel. I made a wish that I was the fastest runner in the world. Then I did a race with everybody in the world. I always won. I said, “I like this nickel already.”

Then I wished that I was rich. It happened. I was thrilled. I had like a million dollars. Then I wished I could fly and before you knew it, I was flying as fast as an eagle. Then I flew back to my house and went to sleep. Then I woke, did more wishing, and I shared my wishes.

That’s how my life went on until I was a grown up. Then the nickel went back into the box and then flew into a dimension far far far away from here. I tried to reach it, but I couldn’t. But my life was still good. I really don’t need the nickel any more.

by Orkan, 3rd Gradeamy-lin-in-a-maze.jpg

Posted by Amy Lin, Writers in the Schools

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