Kindergarten Journal Prompts

Instructor: Maria Airth

Maria has a Doctorate of Education and over 20 years of experience teaching psychology and math related courses at the university level.

When asking kindergarten children to write, it is often more like asking them to elaborately fill in blanks. A good writing prompt for a very young child is the first half of a sentence that leads them to consider the second half and write about it. Older children or more advanced young children should be given complete sentences as writing prompts. This lesson provides several writing prompts for kindergarten, organized by general theme.

Writing Prompts for Kindergarten

Young children have short attention spans, but still need to practice writing and putting thoughts together. Great writing prompts are those that allow students to be creative without requiring them to start from a blank page. Additionally, most writing prompts at this age should look a bit like fill in the blank sentences, giving students the structure support so they can focus on the ideas.

For your own organization, you may find it easiest to group your writing prompts for kindergarten into main themes. Three main themes might be About Myself, Holiday Themes, and Cross Curriculum Themes.

About Myself

This theme includes prompts that are great for the early days of the school year when students are getting to know each other and their teacher. There is an old adage that states people enjoy talking about themselves. Getting students to become more comfortable with writing in the early years through writing about themselves is a great idea.

  • My favorite food is …., because….
  • I like my pet ……, because….
  • My favorite color is …..
  • I enjoy doing ….
  • I am happiest when I ….
  • The best part of my day is ……
  • My favorite sport is …., because…
  • The people in my family are ….
  • During the summer, I …

Notice how these sentence starters give the student a place to start their thinking and guides them to answers that are specific to themselves. Young children have fewer experiences than older students and adults, so questions that do not require them to have much previous knowledge of the world around them will engender trust and possibly result in less stress as they write. Obviously, these prompts can be used any time of the year, but as ice-breaker type prompts, they may help ease students' anxiety over writing.

If you have young students that are a bit more advanced than the above prompts call for, you could use similar prompts themes with full sentences instead.

  • Write about your family members.
  • Do you have a pet? What kind of animal is your pet?
  • What is your favorite sport? Why?
  • What superhero would you be and why?

Holiday Themes

There seems to be some sort of holiday each month of school; if not an actual holiday, at least major seasonal changes that can act as real life prompts for students to connect with as they write. As the school year progresses, continually writing about themselves might get boring. Also, encouraging students to look beyond themselves and take notice of what is happening around them is a good idea. Kindergarten students might be too young to discuss current events in the news, but they aren't too young to have opinions on current calendar events like spring time, Mother's Day, and Christmas break coming. These are great prompts to keep students writing and begin to transition them into thinking about the world around themselves.

  • Happy Mother's/ Father's Day. You are the best mom/dad because…
  • I like Spring because…
  • My favorite part of summer vacation is ….
  • President's Day means ….
  • Valentine's Day is fun because ….
  • If I could make any holiday it would be …. because….
  • I think Thanksgiving means …..
  • The best part of Christmas break is ….

Again, with these prompts, they can be made into full sentences for students who are at a slightly higher skill level.

  • Why is President's Day important?
  • Do you like Spring/Winter/Fall/Summer? Why?

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