Ideas for Group Writing Projects

Instructor: Clio Stearns

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.

Teaching students how to write does not need to be an individualistic endeavor. Learning how to collaborate on their writing will help students succeed in education as well as the workplace. This lesson gives you some ideas for project that allow students to write as a group.

Why Group Writing?

Think about the times in your life when writing is important. Of course, sometimes you write things on your own: letters, report card comments, behavior notes. Often, though, you probably write things in collaboration with others, like presentations, behavior plans, IEP goals and even the annual family holiday letter. Students should learn how to write in groups because group writing is something they will need to do throughout their educations and careers. Furthermore, writing in groups can help students learn from one another and enhance their individual strengths. This lesson recommends writing projects that students can take on in groups.

Projects for Early Elementary

In grades K-2, students are still working hard at the mechanics of writing, and collaboration is fun but also challenging. These projects will help children develop their capacities as writers.

  • Ask students to write a letter to their families describing everything they have done at school during the week. In their letter, they should all have a voice. They can also work together to add illustrations to their letters.
  • After students complete an activity or experiment in science, have them work in groups to write about the procedure they followed and what they learned or discovered. Photographs or illustrations can accompany their writing.
  • Read a picture book out loud to your students. Then, ask them to work in groups to rewrite the story as a play. They can even perform the play to show off the writing they have done!

Projects for Upper Elementary

From 3rd to 5th grade, students are somewhat more seasoned as collaborators and are more familiar with the writing process. These projects make use of their newfound strengths.

  • Have your students write a letter to the author of a book they have enjoyed as a class. In their letters, they should explain what they admire about the author and ask any questions they may have.
  • Explain to your students that they are in charge or writing introductions to their school for potential visitors. In groups, they should write the copy for brief but helpful brochures describing everything that is at your school and what makes your classroom special.
  • Ask students to imagine they are traveling back in time to a period they are studying for social studies. They should work in groups to write descriptions of their experiences and roles they played during this time travel.

Projects for Middle School

Middle school students often love the opportunity to work along with their peers. These projects build on their interpersonal strengths and help them build writing skills as well.

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