Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Writing Wednesday - Story Starter #12

On this day, February 20, 1962, the first United States astronaut orbited the Earth. John Glenn Day commemorates this launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Glenn circled the Earth three times in a space capsule before landing it safely in the ocean.

This day in history can prompt a number of stories for children. Here are some story starters to get the juices flowing:

If you could travel in space, what would you see?
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

To turn this writing prompt into a story for children - namely a picture book, you could ask What if questions. Here are some samples:

What if a pre-schooler snuck onto a shuttle and was still on it when it took off?
What if a Kindergarten class took a field trip to Cape Canaveral and a student pushed the Big Red Button marked "Launch"?
What if a four year old went with his family to see a launch and when the smoke cleared, he something amazing? What did he/she see?
What if the astronauts decided to take a pet hamster into space and from all the kids in America, they chose your pet?
What if you are a dog and you just saw your favorite boy get into a shuttle and take off, you need to find him, what will you do? How will you follow him into space?

Come up with some What if questions of your own or use one of these. Don't think, just write.

Leave a comment letting me know what you think of this Story Starter. I posted eleven of them in 2012, if you want me to post them weekly on Writing Wednesday, let me know.


  1. Great story starter, Alison! You always post such good ones! :) Have you read... I think it's called Moustronaut? about the mouse who goes up in a rocket?

  2. Good starters and questions. I wonder, though, if landing "safely" in the ocean might be a story starter of its own! What did the animals in the water see when the rocket landed near their homes? What did they hear? Did they consider it a "safe" landing? So many possibilities for looking at events in history through different eyes. Thanks for posting!