Sometimes as teachers, we just seem to come up blank when we need something for the students. Maybe it's a filler item, maybe a bell ringer, or maybe for a substitute teacher. We just need...something. Well, here's a super option from Toolkits for All.
Writing Choice Boards
This simple choice board was created for teachers like us by the talented Alyssa Rigg of Toolkits for All. Alyssa is a 4th grade teacher, and teacher-author, in the Big Apple itself. That said, middle school teachers like myself, and some high school teachers, will also find this choice board helpful.
The choice board is actually provided to you in PDF format, and the board takes two pages. The first page includes student instructions and 10 prompts, while the second page contains an additional 11 prompts. The great thing with this is that, because it is in PDF format, you can easily upload it to a digital classroom such as Google Classroom, which means it can be used for distance learning as well as teaching in the "regular" classroom.
So, why can some of the upper grades use a 4th grade choice board? In a word...Blooms. Ms. Rigg takes what can be considered "simple prompts" for lower elementary students, and pushes them to challenge student-scholars at all levels. Yes, each can be related to by a younger student; i.e., "Write about returning to school after a break." Notice that it isn't, "Write about what you did over break." There is an implication here that in order to be successful with this prompt, Martin will have to discuss his feelings about returning to school. Dr. Bloom, meet Dr. Maslow. Or, let's push it a bit with my favorite from Ms. Rigg's list...
17. Imagine you met a genie and were granted 3 wishes. What would they be and WHY?
The why pushes the boundary a bit. Make the kids think. Granted, with my students I would add, "You may not say endless money or x dollars." They're middle schoolers. I want them to work for it.
Full disclosure...17 is not really my favorite. 20 is. You have to download it to find out what it is.