10 Books That Inspire Kids to Write (+ writing paper printables)

10 Books That Inspire Kids to Write (+ writing paper printables)

Writing is one of the most important skills for children to learn and feel confident about. Whatever passions, interests, or career paths they may choose, the ability to communicate through the written word will be at the center of all they do.

It is for this reason that our children should have plenty of positive experiences with writing outside of school. It should be a medium that they dabble in, experiment with, try on for size, and utilize as a creative outlet.

I love to use picture books as inspiration for writing activities. As children read they become so involved in the characters and the story that it creates a great entry point for introducing different types of writing.

Here are some of my favorite children’s books to use prompts for writing activities…

  • My Five Senses by Aliki – A great way to encourage children to use descriptive language, incorporating how objects and people in their writing look, smell, feel, sound, and taste.
  • Zoom by Itsvan Banyai – An amazing wordless book that exemplifies that there is always more to things than meets the eye. This book can be used to demonstrate to children that the more descriptive language they use in their writing the more vivid it becomes. Encourage the budding writers in your life to “Zoom-In” on their writing by adding, even the smallest, details.
  • Wallace’s Lists by Barbara Bottner & Gerald Kruglik – A wonderful book that inspires list writing of all kinds. Print out this list paper printable and have it handy after finishing the story. You will be amazed by the lists you see popping up around the house.
  • My Map Book by Sara Fanelli – A lovely book full of creative maps. Making a heart map is a great way to generate lots of ideas for topics to write about. The best writing comes when we write about the things we love most.
  • Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox – A heartwarming book that captures the importance of storytelling from one generation to the next. Encourage your child to collect a box of mementos and use each item as a story-starter.
  • The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter – Words are powerful, lyrical, and can make magic. The Boy Who Loved Words brings this notion to life for children in a fun and playful way. Make a list of you favorite words and incorporate them into your writing.
  • Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Roni Schotter – Inspires children to remember that every day is filled with small moments that can be captured through writing and transformed into great stories.
  • The Best Story by Eileen Spinelli – A great reminder to children that their writing should come from the heart and be a medium for self-expression.


For More Inspiration!

Camp Playful Learning: Writer's Notebook


* This post contains affiliate links.



With over 10 years of EDU experience and a growing family, Mariah started Playful Learning in 2008 as a resource for parents and teachers. In 2010 Playful Learning received the Parent’s Choice Gold Medal, and in August of 2011, Shambhala Publications released her first book, Playful Learning: Develop Your Child’s Sense of Joy and Wonder. Mariah has an M.S. Ed in Elementary Education and was that girl sitting in the back of class thinking about what she would do differently if she was the teacher. Now she is happily working with a team of gifted educators to bring life-changing lessons to children, families, and schools around the world. In her free time she can be found taking long walks, enjoying a cup of tea, or swimming in the Atlantic with her husband and two daughters.



Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. As always, thanks for a lovely and inspiring list. I used to be an Usborne/Kane MIller rep, and Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge sits on our bookshelf.
    I can’t read it without tearing up!
    We’ve read a lot of these, but I have yet to get “Questions, Questions” at the library. It’s been on my hold list for weeks! 🙂
    Sarah M

  2. This list looks awesome! We love our books and my 6 yo is enjoying more creative writing. Always looking for new ways to encourage her. Thanks for a great list that I’m holding on to for future reference!

Sign up for Our Newsletter!