In this article, you’ll find all the NoRedInk resources that can help your students develop strong narrative writing skills. You can use NoRedInk to support students with every stage of the writing process, from practicing specific skills to planning, drafting, and revising full narrative essays.
To help you choose and sequence activities, we’ve organized our resources below according to stages of the writing process:
- Interactive tutorials help students understand what strong narrative writing looks like
- Quick Writes allow students to develop their skills with short written exercises
- Pre-writing worksheets help students plan their narrative essays
- Guided Draft assignments support students as they draft full narrative essays
- Guided Drafts allow you to leave feedback on students’ essays and request revisions
You can also take advantage of NoRedInk’s Narrative Guided Draft essay plan, which leads students to draft full narrative essays over the course of two weeks. Activities include a mix of pre-writing, scaffolded drafting, and targeted skill development. You can assign all of the activities, pick and choose the ones you want to assign, or just use this plan as inspiration!
Before drafting narrative essays
Use interactive tutorials to pre-teach or review narrative skills
NoRedInk's interactive tutorials break writing concepts down into manageable chunks. If you’re preparing students to write an essay, consider assigning an interactive tutorial to give them a primer on the most important elements of strong narrative writing. You can also assign tutorials for specific skills you'd like students to review.
To learn more about how you can use interactive tutorials, see this article.
Click the links below to see our narrative writing tutorials!
- Narrative Essay Overview
- The Beginning of a Narrative Essay
- The Middle of a Narrative Essay
- The End of a Narrative Essay
Develop narrative writing skills with Quick Writes
Quick Writes are lightweight exercises that can serve a range of purposes, from developing specific writing skills to preparing for longer assignments. Click here to learn more about Quick Writes.
If you want your students to practice specific narrative writing skills, check out these sections in NoRedInk's library of pre-made prompts:
- Tell a Story: get students’ imaginations going with these fun narrative prompts
- Describe: help students practice their descriptive language skills
- Skill Building: find prompts to help students practice skills like using figurative language, formatting dialogue, and more.
If your students are preparing to draft full essays, consider assigning a Quick Write to check they’re on the right track and give them feedback on their ideas. Here are some ideas for Quick Writes you could create to support students with pre-writing:
- Ask students to submit their narrative’s theme and conflict for review
- Have students outline the main events of their story
- Ask students to plan one part of their narrative, like the rising action and climax
Click here to create your own Quick Write prompt!
Use pre-writing worksheets to help students plan narrative essays
Before students start writing their essays, set them up for success with these pre-writing materials! You can pick and choose the worksheets you think will most help to prepare your students for a Guided Drafts assignment, or use the full set together:
Drafting narrative essays
Support students in drafting full essays with Narrative Guided Drafts
When your students are ready to write full essays, NoRedInk's Guided Drafts can provide them with scaffolding, exemplars, and tips to help them produce strong writing. Click here to learn more about Guided Drafts.
Browse our library of narrative essay prompts, or use your own prompt! You can assign work directly from the assignment library.
What students see during a Guided Drafts assignment
Revising narrative essays
Give feedback on Guided Drafts to help students revise
Once students have submitted their essays, you can provide immediate feedback by grading students on each of the rubric items you selected and giving an overall score. You can also leave both general comments and comments on specific parts of students’ essays.
If you want students to incorporate your feedback into their work, you can send the essays back for them to revise based on your comments.
When students revise, you will be able to see the previous submissions to check that students understood your feedback and made appropriate changes.
Click here to learn more about giving feedback and requesting revisions on Guided Drafts.
Looking for ways to combine these resources?
You can combine NoRedInk’s assignments in a variety of ways to meet different learning objectives! The sample plans below illustrate some of the highest-leverage ways to sequence NoRedInk's narrative writing assignments and printable resources.
These plans are just examples—adapt any plan to meet your and your students’ needs!
- Skill Focus: Formatting Dialogue can be used over 1–2 class periods to help students practice using quotes in stories.
- The longer Narrative Guided Draft essay plan leads students to draft full narrative essays over the course of two weeks. Activities include a mix of pre-writing, scaffolded drafting, and targeted skill development.