21 Creative Journaling Ideas for Kids of Every Age
Writing journals for kids has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its many benefits.
But knowing how to start a journal or what to write is not always easy! Keep reading to learn all about creative journaling, why it’s so important, and some of the top benefits of writing every day.
On top of that, we’ll explore 21 original journaling ideas for kids of every age!
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What Is Creative Journaling and Why Is It Important?
The essence of creative journaling is that it has no rules. It’s “a mix of written words and art, all in one place.” In a journal, you can write poems or short stories, add notes, register new ideas, and doodle. It’s all up to you.
But why is it important to engage in creative journaling?
Journaling can help you to boost your creativity, reduce your stress, and foster clear thinking. But let me focus now on the benefits it can bring your child.
Benefits of Writing a Daily Journal for Kids
Some of the most common benefits of engaging in journal writing for kids include:
- Improves your child’s writing skills
- Stimulates their creativity
- Preserves memories
- It helps your child to deal with emotions
- It helps to deal with mental health
- It helps them to slow down and be more reflective
These are all no-brainers. So, why you wouldn’t want your child to keep a journal?
21 Creative Journaling Ideas for Kids
Now that we know that journaling is tremendously beneficial for your children let’s see different ways to journal. These are 21 creative journaling ideas for kids categorized by age:
Kid Story Ideas for Grades 3 and 4
Let’s start with elementary kids from 8 to 10 years old.
1. If You Could Have Any Pet, What Would You Want and Why? (Fantasy Creatures Allowed)
When starting a journal for your child, you need to look for ideas that can catch their attention, and kids love nothing more than their pets—real or imaginary. Ask your child to think about the ideal pet. If it’s a dog or cat, ask them to choose a race or if they’d like to adopt.
Also, let their imagination fly. Ask them to choose a fantasy creature, such as a unicorn or a dragon, and ask how having them would affect their lives.
2. Is It Better to Have Younger or Older Siblings? Why?
I think every child has an opinion about this.
A child’s answers will vary according to their situation. For example, if your kid is an only child, ask them to imagine how their lives would be different with a brother or sister and what he or she would prefer to have.
3. Write a Story About a Magical Tree
Kids of this age love magic and its possibilities.
With magic, there are no limits. You can fly or disappear; nobody will ask why or how that’s possible. Also, a tree is not the typical magic element in stories. Trees can’t move, or… can they?
Discovering what kind of magic a tree can have will ignite your child’s imagination.
4. Write a Story About You as a Pirate
When discussing children’s journals, writing about pirates has to be at the top of the conversation.
Depending on your child’s preferences, it can also be a princess or an astronaut. Still, I think pirates are really attractive for most kids, and it’s pretty easy to imagine yourself having amazing adventures as one.
5. What Makes People Happy?
This is the more “serious” journal idea for children of this age. I think that they’re old enough to reflect on the topic, but also in an innocent way. So they will come up with some wonderful answers.
Expect reasons such as “coffee,” “Disneyland,” or “moms.”
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Kid Journal Prompts for Grades 5 and 6
Let’s get now some ideas for children aged 10 to 12.
6. What Do You Like About Your Family?
One of the most common types of journals is the “about me” journal; with this, the family is one of the main topics.
Ask your child to think about their family, what they like the most about it, and why. Reflecting on our family tends to make us appreciate it more.
7. A Genie is Giving You Three Wishes, What Are You Asking and Why?
I remember thinking about this situation when I was a child. We all would love to get three wishes without limits. How to make the most of them? What would be an intelligent thing to ask?
The infinite possibilities and the exercise will make your child focus on what’s important for them in life.
8. Imagine Your Dream House and Describe it In Detail
You know you’ve done this exercise yourself.
What do you think your child’s dream house would look like? I’m sure it will include a swimming pool and a big garden. But what other things does a child of this age want in a house?
Make sure to highlight the need for detail in this journal entry.
9. What Do You Want to Do When You Grow Up?
This is one of the most common journals prompts in school and one of the most useful. On this one, your child can let their imagination fly and mix it with a dose of reality.
Does your child dream of being an astronaut, firefighter, or maybe a lawyer or entrepreneur? Whatever they choose, it will be a reflection of their preferences in life.
10. Which Superpower Would You Like to Have and Why?
We seem to live in the age of the superhero, and kids love to think about having powers.
Ask your child to come up with an original superpower, to think about something different and unique. However, if they choose something like flying or super strength, ask them to explain in detail why they chose that and what they would do with it.
Journal Entry Ideas for Middle School Students
It’s time to discuss some interesting journaling ideas for middle school students.
11. Do You Like Going to School? Why?
Let’s start with a difficult one. Most kids say they hate school but do they? That’s where they see their friends, play football, and go on cool field trips and summer camps.
Asking the question can be risky, but I think this reflection exercise will highlight the pros and cons that schools have from a student’s perspective.
12. What’s the Best Advice Someone Has Ever Given You?
Maybe not many children of this age reflect on this question.
However, I think that when they do, they enjoy the exercise. With it, they also remember advice people have given them. They might also realize just how lucky they’ve been by having all those well-intentioned people in their lives.
13. What’s the Worst Decision You’ve Ever Made?
To this day, I’m impressed with the answers I’ve gotten from this question. I usually expect something like “choosing a lemon ice cream instead of a chocolate one,” and my students often come up with heavier stuff.
I remember kids telling me things like “lying to my mom” or “hurting my brother really bad.” It’s an interesting prompt that will tell a lot about your child’s personality.
14. Who’s Your Best Friend and What Do You Like About Him/Her?
At this age, friends are of vital importance for every child. Asking them who their best friend is and why will make them think hard about the people they spend the most time with daily.
15. If You Could Talk to Your Future Self, What Would You Ask?
I find this one super interesting. Ask your child to write the full conversation between their present and future self. I’m sure you’ll be amazed by the kind of chat they will have.
Creative Journaling Ideas for High School Students
Last but not least, some journal prompts for teenagers from 14 to 18 years old.
16. What’s the Coolest Job to Have? Why?
They’re not kids anymore. So, the question isn’t about what they want to be, but what they think is the coolest job. Some answers may include YouTuber, influencer, or football player. But remember to urge them to explain the reason behind their choice.
17. Why Is It Important to Travel?
You can also ask, “where would you like to go?”
But I think this question requires a more profound reflection from teenagers. This is because they now have the experience to think about this and come up with original ideas.
18. What Can You Do to Combat Climate Change?
I think teenagers are better prepared to answer this question than previous generations. Since their primary years, they have learned about the danger of climate change and the need to take care of our planet.
But still, thinking about action on a personal level can be challenging.
19. What Is Different About You?
Hard question even for an adult, isn’t it? But for a teenager, these are the years of self-discovery and when they search for their own identity. So, the question is at the heart of their interests (even if they aren’t aware of it).
20. Write a Bucket List of 10 Things You’d Like to Do One Day
I think every young person should write this list and review it and update it from time to time. I’m still trying to drive to Patagonia on a road trip starting in Mexico, as that was the last item on my bucket list during my high school years.
Ask for crazy (but safe), fun (but original), and doable (not going to the moon, please!) stuff.
21. Have You Ever Wanted to Learn Another Language? Which One and Why?
I think we all have wanted to learn another language at some point in our lives.
Ask your child to think about this, and they may surprise you with their answers. For example, maybe they want to learn French and travel to Africa. Who knows?
How to Journal in a Foreign Language
Creative journaling in a foreign language can be an excellent tool to improve your child’s writing skills and spelling in the goal language. However, it can be challenging, especially if they’re still at the beginners’ level.
Considering that, here are some useful tips to help your child start a journal in a foreign language:
- Short paragraphs
- Choose a tense beforehand (past, present, future) and stick to it
- Write directly in the language you’re learning (do not translate!)
- Get some help from a renowned source
You can look for a private tutor or online school such as Homeschool Spanish Academy. HSA can provide you with all the guidance you need to write in Spanish from the comfort of your home.
Start Creative Journaling Today!
The idea of writing journals is to help kids develop their creativity and make them think about fun or important aspects of life.
Just sitting down and writing for a few minutes is something that will help them become more reflective. Creative writing will also take them away from their devices and social media accounts.
If you want them to stick to the idea of writing a journal, remember to make it fun for your child! Choose one or two journaling ideas discussed above and help your child start journaling today.
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