Author: Deb Avery | Published on 1 November 2022


Read what a teacher says about this activity:

My learners enjoy creating group stories. I often use a story we’ve already read as a model for the new story. My learners practise text structure and grammar, develop creativity and learn to work together. As we share new ideas, the learners encourage each other.

Stage 1: Prepare

Copy a short story you have read with the class onto the board or a chart. Write the title at the top of the page.

Read the story aloud with the learners, pointing to the words.

Stage 2: Explain

Say: ‘We’re going to create a new story together. We’ll use the story on the board to help us, but we’ll change some of the characters and ideas.’

Read the story again with the learners and decide which words to change. 

Underline the words that the learners want to change.

For example, if the story starts ‘The little yellow chicken was going to a party’, you might underline as follows: ‘The little yellow chicken was going to a party.’

Stage 3: Brainstorm

Ask: ‘What could we say instead of “little”?’ The learners should brainstorm alternative words (e.g. big, tiny, huge). You can also suggest some words. 

Discuss the categories of words which you are changing (e.g. adjective, colour, animal, celebration). 

Accept all answers and record them on the board or a mind map.

Repeat for other underlined words. 

Stage 4: Create a new story 

Say: ‘How shall we begin our story?’ Using the information in the mind map, ask learners to create a new first sentence. For example: The big orange tiger was going to a wedding.

You can then repeat with the next sentences. You can do this as a whole class, or let the learners do this in groups of three or four. 

Stage 5: Do closing activity

When the story is finished, read it aloud with the children. Or, if the groups have created by themselves, they can read their versions. 

You can also personalise this activity by asking learners to create stories about shared experiences, e.g. a class outing or a local sports match.  


Brainstorm: To suggest ideas quickly, before then considering them more carefully.

Mind map: A way of creating and organising ideas about a topic. One central topic is written in a circle and different, related ideas come out from the centre. 

Text structure: the way authors organize information in text

See also