Common Core Writing Prompts for 4th Grade

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

New standards require students to write more than ever before. Use this lesson to help your students understand writing expectations and practice writing to a prompt.

Common Core Writing Prompts

The Common Core standards identify specific outcomes for fourth grade writers. They need to routinely write over a wide variety of topics, conducting research, being reflective, and applying revision techniques. Topics include opinion, informational, and narrative. Students need to write to a specific audience and use their experiences to help them develop as writers.

Though this may sound daunting, when broken down the Common Core Writing standards for fourth grade students is straightforward and specific enough for teachers to maneuver. Basically, students will be asked to write in a variety of ways across the curriculum. Here are some prompts to help them practice the skill.

Writing Prompts for 4th Grade Students

Like we said above, fourth grade students are asked to write in a wide variety of ways and across the curriculum. Let's break it down.

Opinion Prompts

Opinion writing pieces give a viewpoint that is supported with information and reasons. Students may be asked to read a short paragraph on a topic and respond with an opinion. For example, a paragraph about trees may be followed by a question that asks students for an opinion piece about which trees are best to climb. All questions prompt students to give reasons and explanations to support their thinking.

  • Should elementary students be given homework?
  • How many students should be in a classroom?
  • Are uniforms a good idea?
  • When should people be given the right to vote?
  • Which kind of pet is the best to have?

Informational/Explanatory Prompts

Students will also be required to research and create text that teaches others. Informational text prompts are typically used following a non-fiction piece of writing, such as an article, or a video. Students are then asked to write about the topic. For example, if the article topic is bird migration, the prompt may be to have students explain the steps birds take when migrating, or how human interference has impacted bird migration. Students are asked to include specific information to back up their writing. Prompts not relying on other sources or using subject areas you can practice with include:

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