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Lesson Plan: Using Picture Prompts for Writing in Key Stage One

In this lesson, we will be focusing on using picture prompts to inspire and enhance writing skills in young learners. Picture prompts are a wonderful way to engage your pupils' imaginations and encourage them to express their ideas through writing. Let's dive in! 

Learning Objectives 

  • Develop descriptive writing skills 

  • Enhance vocabulary and language usage 

  • Practice storytelling 

  • Improve sentence structure 

Materials Needed 

  • A variety of picture prompts (e.g., photographs, illustrations, or magazine cutouts. Mighty Writer's Tool Bars are a fantastic resource for this!) 

  • Writing paper or notebooks 

  • Pencils or pens 

  • Markers or coloured pencils (optional) 


Note: This lesson is designed to be conducted over multiple sessions. 

  1. Introduce the concept of picture prompts to the pupils. Show them a few examples and explain that these images will help inspire their writing. 

  1. Lead a class discussion about the different elements within the picture prompts. Encourage students to observe and describe what they see, including colours, shapes, objects, and people. 

  1. Assign each pupil a picture prompt. Alternatively, you can let them choose or distribute them randomly. Ensure that each child has a different picture prompt. 

  1. Give them some time to study their picture prompts individually. Encourage them to make observations, think about the story behind the image, and brainstorm ideas for their writing. 

  1. Invite the children to share their observations and ideas with the class. Encourage them to use descriptive language and vivid details. 

  1. Ask each pupil to write a story or a descriptive paragraph based on their picture prompt. Remind them to include a beginning, middle, and end in their story. 

  1. Provide support and guidance to them as they work on their writing. Offer suggestions for vocabulary and sentence structure improvements. 

  1. Once they have finished writing, allow them to share their stories with the class. Encourage their classmates to provide feedback and ask questions. 

  1. Encourage them to revise and edit their stories based on the feedback received. 

  1. Optional: Create a class book showcasing the pupils' stories and their corresponding picture prompts. This can be a great way to celebrate their work and promote reading and writing within the school community. 


Assessment can be carried out in various ways: 

  • Observation during class discussions and writing activities 

  • Reviewing pupils' written stories for language use, descriptive details, and overall structure 

  • Formative assessment through feedback and revision 

Extension Activities 

To extend this lesson, you can: 

  • Have children create their own picture prompts and exchange them with their classmates to write stories. 

  • Challenge students to write a dialogue between two characters in their story. 

  • Encourage students to create illustrations to accompany their stories. 

  • Organise a "Writing Showcase" event where students can read their stories aloud to an audience. 

Using picture prompts for writing in Key Stage 1 can be a highly effective and enjoyable way to develop literacy skills. It allows children to engage with their imagination, think critically, and express their ideas through written language. Have fun exploring the power of picture prompts in your classroom! 

For more information, another lesson plan, a helpful review and the history of Mighty Writer, download our free teachers' guide resource today!

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