Many parents give their children certain chores or tasks to do at home. Should children have to do chores or tasks at home? Be sure to explain why you think it is a good idea or a bad idea. Include examples to support your reasons.
School Lunch Menu (Persuasive)
Your school cafeteria always has the same lunch menu. You think it should have more choices. Write a letter to your principal asking for more variety on the menu. In your letter, include three reasons for changing the menu and some suggestions for what to add to it.
Pretend that you have a cousin you've never met. Your cousin lives in another state, but you want him or her to get to know you. Write a letter to your cousin describing yourself. Include what you look like, your personality, and your interests.
Feeling Happy (Descriptive)
Think about something that made you happy recently. Describe fully what happened and how you felt. Also explain why it made you feel that way.
Make a Change (Cause-Effect)
Think of something in your school which needs to be changed. Describe why it has to be changed. Explain how this change will affect students.
No Rules (Cause-Effect)
Pretend you woke up one day and there were no rules. People could suddenly do whatever they wanted! Explain what the world would be like. Use your imagination!
Earn Money (Process)
Pretend that your class publishes a newspaper. Your classmates write to you and ask for help. You then tell them what they should do. You just got this letter:
Dear Secret Helper,
I am in fifth grade. I really want a bike! All my friends have bikes. But I only have $5. How can I make money for a bike? Help!
Can you help Jimmy? Answer his letter. Describe one way he can make money for his bike and write in detail everything Jimmy needs to do to earn enough money for the bike.
Best Friends (Compare-Contrast)
People can be different in some ways yet still be best friends. Describe you and your best friend. Then explain two ways that you are similar and two ways that you are different. Give examples to show how you are alike and different.
Be a Detective (Narrative)
You are a famous detective. You have just been hired to find out why the school lunches tasted awful last week. It's a difficult job, but you're ready for it!
What do you do? How do you solve the case? What do you find out? Write a story about what happens. Use your imagination!
Be a Super Hero (Narrative)
Suppose you woke up and found out that you had become a super hero for a day. What happened? What powers did you have? What did you do? Write a story about your day. Be creative!
Monday and Friday (Compare and Contrast)
Mondays and Fridays are both school days; however, they are different in some ways. Write an essay describing what Mondays are like, including how you feel and what you do on Mondays. Then, describe what Fridays are like. Explain two ways that Mondays and Fridays are similar, and explain two ways that they are different. Include examples to support your points.
Special Treat (Descriptive)
Think about a favorite food you look forward to eating at special occasions. Write an essay describing this food, including details about how it looks, smells, and tastes. Why is this food special to you?
Favorite Animal (Descriptive)
Of all the wild animals that you have ever seen in a zoo, movie, or book, what is your favorite? Which animal would you most like for a friend? Write an essay describing your favorite animal, including its appearance, its habitat, and its behavior. Explain why the animal is your favorite.
Foods for Health (Cause and Effect)
We need to eat many different kinds of foods to grow strong and healthy. Write a description of at least three foods you think are needed for a healthful diet. Explain the benefit each food brings to you. Also describe what you think would happen to your body if you did not eat these healthy foods.
Grocery Town (Narrative)
Imagine that the grocery store is a town where different foods live. Write a story about a day in Grocery Town when one of the foods does something that changed the lives of all the foods in the town. What did the food do? What happened to it and to the other foods afterward?
Dream Blending (Narrative)
Imagine that you fell asleep while reading your history textbook and your favorite storybook at the same time. What would happen if the two stories came together in your dream? Use your imagination to rewrite your favorite story in a different time period in history.
New Subject to Study (Persuasive)
Imagine that your teacher wants to teach a new subject for the next few weeks. Your teacher will take suggestions, and then let the students vote on the new subject. What subject should your class choose? Write an essay to support your choice and to persuade the other students to vote for your choice.
The Field Trip (Persuasive)
Your teacher is trying to decide whether to take the class on a field trip to the zoo or to a local museum. Which would you rather do? Write an essay to persuade your teacher to agree with your choice. Give at least three reasons to support your choice.
Birthday Bash (Process)
You've been asked to plan the perfect birthday party, and you want to write your plan down step by step to be sure you don't leave anything out. What do you do first? What important steps come next? You may pick a certain age or theme, but don't forget a single detail.
Imagine that a new student has come to your school, and your teacher has asked you to show him around. Your school library has a different system from that of his old school. Write instructions to help the new student become familiar with the library's system. Explain how to find a book and how to check it out from the school library.
These 5th-grade writing prompts (or fifth grade essay topics) are written for students in grade five. They are free to use under a Creative Commons License.
Want more ideas? Click the "categories" tab at the top of the screen, or visit the homepage.
- People often consider what it would be like to be the last person alive on earth and of course it would be horrible in lots of ways. But let us be a little different – tell me what fun you could have if the earth was all yours!?
- Walking home from school, you see your dad stealing something from a local store. What would you do?
- What would be your Olympic event if you had to perform at London 2012? Would you be excited or terrified!?
- Are older people cleverer than younger people? Give reasons for your answer.
- Can watching TV harm us?
- Imagine being amazed and rather shocked at something you find in a drawer under your school reports. Now write about it.
- Imagine a woman fell out of a plane flying at 20,000ft and survived. How might this have been achieved without a parachute? Use your imagination, anything goes!
- Imagine that a lady next door digs in her garden at 3am every night. Write a about what she might be up to.
- Is Christmas too commercialized now? What might make it better?
- What do you feel you need to be happy?
- If you could travel back in time, when would you go back to and why?
- If ants ruled the world, what would things look like?
- Imagine a lady called Denise who is a very bossy hairdresser. Eventually though she gets her comeuppance. Write about what happened.
- If someone told you that you would be incredibly famous by the age of twenty-five, what do you think it would be for?
- Have you ever seen something which you could just not explain?
- Write down three facts about yourself that not many people know. Then make one fact up that could be true, but is not. Show these to your friends and see if they can spot the false fact!
- Go and visit your eldest relation. Get them to tell you a true story their grandparents told them. This story should give you a glimpse into the past from about 100 ago. That is amazing, is it not?
- If you could have the perfect room to do your homework in, what would it contain?
- Find a local news story that interests you. Change one fact and re-write the story. For example, maybe a local politician opened a supermarket. What if he'd accidentally demolished it instead!
- What would happen if all the country's policemen decided to have a month off work at the same time?
- Using the internet, find some facts about a country you previously knew nothing about. The write about it, amazing your friends and family with what an expert you have become. This is known as doing 'research'.
- If it were really possible to bring dinosaurs back to life, should we?
- Think of the oldest building you know then imagine what might be buried underneath it.
- If a new pupil, from another town joined your school today, what one piece of advice would you give them and why?
- Tell me about a household chore you really dislike doing.
- Describe what it would be like to wake up from a great dream to find it was all true.
- Describe something which has happened to you, which you felt was really unfair. How did you deal with it?
- What would be the pluses and minuses of having a parent who was a teacher?
- When fish go to sleep, do they float down stream and wake up miles away? Imagine what that must be like and write about it.
- Do you have any keepsakes? If so, describe it (them) and tell me what they are a reminder of.
- Imagine your perfect day from the moment you wake to going to sleep. Describe it and why it would make you happy.
- If you had a magic wand, tell me about someone's life you would really like to make better.
- Do you think what one person sees as red will look exactly the same to someone else? How can we be sure?
- Notice that the water always swirls the same way as it goes down the plug hole. Find out why and write a short article about it.
- If someone said you will be really famous as an adult, what would it be for? Maybe think of things you are good at now.
- What one thing really, really annoys you at home? Describe what you feel like.
- Pretend the characters from on TV started speaking to you, write about what might happen.
- What is the most scary animal you have ever seen and why?
- Tell me something you succeeded at, but had to try really, really hard.
- Write about giving something up which would make your life better, or healthier. Plan how you would do it.
- Pretend you have your favourite rock/pop star coming to stay at your house for the weekend. Write a time-table of activities for you and this person to do.
- If you have been really good at school, what sort of treat do you like to be given?
- Which is your least favourite subject at school? Describe why you don't like it and what might make it more enjoyable for you?
- Tell me about when you saw something really amazing. How did it make you feel?
- Is something really good on television more enjoyable if someone watches it with you? Give reasons for your answer.
- If you had a magic friend who was only five centimetres tall, how might this friend help you?
- If you were to write a book, describe what it might be about.
- Tell me about a time when you felt you let someone down.
- Do you think it might sometimes be boring to be a top film star? If so, give me examples of when.
- Write ten writing prompts that a friend of yours would really enjoy doing. Then do the same for a parent. Try and get them to write something about at least two of them!