Welcome to HIT—How I Teach….In this episode, I bring you part I of two parts of how to teach story writing for junior high and beyond! Story writing elements can be challenging to teach to students. This is why a framework where they plug in the elements of protagonist, goals, obstacles, description, action, resolution, and more can be super helpful. Teaching story writing for junior high kids doesn’t have to be boring!

In the first half of this training, I walk through the following elements of story writing and how I teach them in my short story projects (and in this fun animated elephant story from one of my Write for a Month books {Dumbo, Level III}):

~How to create a protagonist

~How to create goals in your story for your main character

~How to create obstacles for your protagonist to go through

(And all of those are practiced with exercises using commonly-known characters from popular animated family movies!)

~How to use SSS5 (Super short sentences of five words or fewer) to emphasize, excite, and accelerate action

~How to teach dialogue with speech tags in various spots

This first half lays the groundwork for understanding story writing before I teach how I help students dig in and create their own characters and actions!

Of course, just like every lesson in my one-month downloadable books and my one-semester Meaningful Composition books, this one also has the invaluable sample story!

And for your convenience, How I Teach…. is available as a podcast (follow along in your TN sheets for that week) and a YouTube video (with Power Point containing the same as the TN)!

Note: This lesson came from Write for a Month With Dumbo, Level III, a month-long downloadable product!


Find everything you need here!

Weekly broadcast episodes with Teacher’s Notebook downloads (and links to listen or watch!) at the Language Arts Lady blog 

Master (continually updated) Teacher’s Notebook downloadable booklet

Free writing books and videos of me teaching your students for you for a couple of weeks! 

All of my digital books!

How I Teach YouTube Channel

How I Teach Podcast