Summer is Here! Keep Your Child’s Writing Skills Sharp with Online Games – Julie C. Lyons

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Like Reading and math, free online activities exist for all subjects… and writing is no exception. Check out the following free interactive writing activities, puzzles, quizzes and games that reinforce writing skills and encourage creativity:

Primary Level (K-2nd Grade)

“Story Writing Game”

In this game, the child fills in the blanks of a short story. The challenge is for the storyteller to choose words that fit the kind of story that has been selected. For example, if the child chooses to tell a ghost story, then he or she must select words for each blank that would be appropriate for a scary tale.

“Opinions Quiz for Critical Thinking”

Practice developing logical reasons to support a thesis with this interactive activity. Students read the stated opinion, such as, “We should have longer recess because…” The child must then select all of the possible reasons from a list that would support the given statement. The challenge lies with the fact that each statement may have more than one possible answer, and to receive credit, the student must select all correct responses. This game is best suited for older primary students.

“Interactives: Sequence”

Allow your child to practice ordering events with this interactive version of the fairy tale, Cinderella. The child looks at several pictures from the story and must drag them to the bottom of the screen to put the events in chronological order. When the player mouses over each scene from the story, a sentence describing the image appears and is read aloud to the student. Once the events are in order, the student can learn more about plot and other story elements with the accompanying tutorials and lessons.

Summer Learning Kit for Parents

Core Content Standards Correlations:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.K.3 Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to narrate a single event or several loosely linked events, tell about the events in the order in which they occurred, and provide a reaction to what happened.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.3 Write narratives in which they recount two or more appropriately sequenced events, include some details regarding
what happened, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide some sense of closure.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.2.1 Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply reasons
that support the opinion, use linking words (e.g., because, and, also) to connect opinion and reasons, and provide a concluding statement or section.

Upper Elementary (3rd-5th Grade)

“Debate Game for Kids”

In this game, kids select a debate topic and read the argument from the “other side”. The object of this game is to select the best argument (out of four possible choices) to support the opposing opinion. The player will know that he or she chose the best argument when the virtual debate audience applauds.

“Mr. Koochof’s Transitional Words and Phrases Quiz”

Practice using transitional words (as a result, moreover, therefore, etc.) in the correct context with this review game. Students must select the appropriate transitional word to fill in the blank of a given sentence. This interactive quiz provides instant feedback, and
if the answer is incorrect, the correct response will be displayed.

“Story Maker”

Children can practice writing stories with dialogue with this interactive activity. First, the writer selects backgrounds, characters, and background music. Then, he or she types in the dialogue between the characters for each scene. After inputting all information for three scenes, the child simply presses “play”, and the 3-act story will appear as a cartoon, complete with a musical soundtrack!

“Story Starters”

This writing activity allows the writer to “spin” the wheel for story starter ideas. Once the topic of the story has been selected, the student types a story that can be downloaded or printed out.

Core Content Standards Correlations:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.3.1 Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.4.2c Link ideas within categories of information using words and phrases (e.g., another, for example, also, because).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.5.3b Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, description, and pacing, to develop experiences and events or show the responses of characters to situations.

Middle School Games (6th-8th Grade)

“Inform, Explain, Describe”

This activity teaches the student the difference between informing a reader, explaining something, and describing an event or scene. To apply these concepts, the child must read three statements and choose the sentence that achieves its intended purpose (to inform, explain, or describe).

“Trailblazing Introductions”

This online activity teaches students the elements of an effective introduction. Then, the child is asked to decide which sentences in the sample introductions state the main idea, generate interest in the topic, provide background information, etc.

“Teen Ink”

Teen Ink is a magazine that showcases the writing and art of teenagers from around the nation. The entire content of this magazine consists of writing from its teen readers. Children must be 13-19 years old to submit a story: check out the magazine’s submission guidelines (see link) for more information. Who knows…your child could become a published author this summer!

Core Content Standards Correlations:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.2d Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.3d Use precise words and phrases, relevant descriptive details, and sensory language to convey experiences and events.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.7.2a Introduce a topic clearly, previewing what is to follow; organize ideas, concepts, and information, using strategies such
as definition, classification, comparison/contrast, and cause/effect; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.8.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, relevant descriptive
details, and well-structured event sequences.

Important Note for Parents and Teachers:

In addition to the aforementioned activities, here is a list of web sites that provide a multitude of games and resources for English, Reading, Math, Science, and more:

Note for Teachers:

After identifying games and videos that you would like to use with your students, you can assemble these online resources into a streamlined format via the “Lumos Quill”. This collaborative authoring platform allows the user to repurpose meaningful content that you have developed and integrate it with the Lumos Teacher website to monitor your students’ progress. To learn more and to view a demonstration, visit:

Beating the Summer Academic Loss – A FREE Webinar

Related Links

Writing Skills Improvement Program



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