40+ Instant Download Picture Writing Prompts for Kids!

Looking for some creative ways to get your student’s creative juices flowing? 

Young writers often experience writer’s block when staring at a blank page. All of their natural imagination and creativity seem to drain out of them when a school assignment is involved.

I have personally seen that oh so many times as a homeschool mom.

Thankfully, I found the secret sauce to getting reluctant writers motivated!

Putting different picture prompts in front of younger students is such a great way to get their minds rolling!

The visual image makes it much easier for them to form a writing idea that blossoms into a solid short story or narrative writing assignment.

Do you need some help getting your student in the right place to write?

I got you!

I have put together a wide variety of images that would work for elementary, middle school students, and even high school students.

How To Use Your FREE Visual Writing Prompts 

Picture Writing Prompts for Kids Pin

At the bottom of this post, click the link for instant download access to the Picture Writing Prompts For Kids PDF files. 

****Only for personal, homeschool, co-op, or classroom use please.

There are two creative writing prompts on each page. Some have a list of questions, a sentence starter, or story ideas. Feel free to ignore or alter any of those. Definitely make it your own!

Once you have the files printed, cut each page in half. 

Allow your student to randomly pick one image every week. Consider making it a Monday warm-up or a fun Friday activity.

I intentionally made more than enough story picture prompts for the school year so that you and your kids can pass on some that are not your favorite things.

Enjoy and happy writing!

42 Picture Writing Prompts For Kids To Sharpen Writing Skills & Spark The Creative Process!

1. Desert Survival
Desert Walking Writing Prompt Image

An exhausted pair struggle through the brutal desert, desperate to survive.

What amazing stroke of luck will save them?

2. Elephant Tight Rope Walker

Elephant Tight Rope Walking Writing Prompt Picture for Kids

This famous circus performing elephant is the best tight rope walker in the world, but her trainer is unkind.

She has a plan to escape…

3. Magic Forest Tunnel

Forest Tunnel Writing Prompt Image

A mysterious tunnel magically opens up in front of you and your friends.

Do you walk through it?

What could be waiting on the other side?

How will you return?

4. Gorilla In The Jungle

Gorilla image for Writing Prompt

What did this gorilla suddenly see?

How does he feel about it?

What will he do?

5. Hot Air Balloon Escape
Hot air ballon writing prompt for kids 2

The only way to cross the rocky, dangerous land is by hot air balloon. But you are running out of fuel fast and falling behind.

What will you do?

6. Invisible Person Picture writing prompt boots walking with invisible person

Is this a villain or a hero?

How did they become invisible?

Where are they going?

7. Snorkel Discovery

Snorkeling image for creative writing prompt for kids

What did she just discover on her snorkel vacation?

Is it valuable, dangerous, or rare?

A new or old type of discovery?

What will she do with it?

8. Surfing Adventure

surfing image for creative writing aid

You’re riding the wave of a lifetime, when suddenly you see something looking back at you through the water…

9. Dog in Trouble

Dog surrounded by mess

You thought for sure that you could hide this dog from your mom. She would never know!

What happened?

What will your mom do now?

10. Dogs in Control

dogs in biker outfits

You have just been informed that these two are your real parents.

What are their rules?

How does your household change?

What is it like to have dogs for parents?

11. Dogs in the Workplace

dogs in scientist costumes

Dr. Wrinkles and Professor Treats have just made a fascinating discovery!

What is it?

How will it help the planet?

12. Detective Pug

dog in raincoat image

Sherlock the Pug is on the trail of another mystery!

What crime is he investigating? Who is involved?

How will he solve the mystery before nap time?

13. Magic Gift

magic in hands writing prompt

What is the magical gift in her hands?

Who is holding it?

Who will receive it? How will they use it?

14. Treasure Map Revealed

ancient treasure map image for writing

An ancient treasure map is about to be revealed to you.

Where does it lead?

What is the treasure? Who does it really belong to?

Will you go after it?

15. Hidden Garden

fairy tale bridge over stream

Something is hidden away in this garden for safekeeping.

Where is it hidden?

What is it? Who hid it?

Who will find it?

16. Wishing Well

Well in middle of desert writing prompt for kids

This enchanted well will bring up anything you wish for – but each person only gets three wishes.

Who finds this well?

What do they wish for?

What happens next?

17. Trapped
man in glass jar

This man may be trapped in a glass jar, but he’s got a plan.

Who is he? How did he get trapped?

Who trapped him and why?

What will the man do first?

18. Surprise Box

kid opening gift box

This kid just opened a gift box and is completely shocked!

What’s inside? 

Who gave it to her?

19. Letter to SantaChristmas child writing letter to Santa

This kid is excited for Christmas…but he has some explaining to do about his behavior to Santa.

What does he write to Santa?

What bad things did he do this year?

How does he explain his choices?

20. Rotten Day or Awesome Daya little girl writing in journal

Write this kid’s diary entry.

Did she have a rotten, no good day?

Or did she have the best day of her life?

What things happened to her today?

21. Urgent Letter

Writing a letter for writing prompt image

Write an urgent letter that was hurriedly written in the middle of the night. 

What is so important? What happened?

Who needs to know about it quickly?

What will happen if the letter doesn’t arrive in time?

22. Soccer Moment

kids playing soccer

Who are these kids?

Have they been riding the bench or leading the team all season?

What will happen when they go against each other in this game?

Epic win or epic fail? Who do you want to win? Why?

23. Lost At Sea

Man in suit and scuba gear on beach

This man has lost something valuable in the ocean and he must act quickly to get it back.

What did he lose?

How was it dropped in the ocean?

Will he ever get it back?

24. Leaving On A Jet Plane

packed overflowing suitcase

You pack a suitcase to go to your absolute favorite place.

Where are you going?

What do you pack? Why?

Who do you take with you on the trip?

25. Deserted Islanddeserted island

You wash ashore on a deserted island with only three things.

What three things did you bring with you?

How do you survive on the island?

What is your plan for escape or how are you rescued?

26. Breaking News!


The whole world woke up to the most shocking news!

What is it?

How does your life change because of the news?

27. Secret Newskid in super hero outfit

This kid discovered something pretty amazing about himself.

What do you think it was?

Who will he tell about his news?

28. Horse-Sized Hug

horses nuzzled together

How do these horses know each other?

Why do you think they are hugging?

How are they feeling? Tired, sad, happy, content?

Why do they feel that way?

29. The Journey Begins!

happy dog hanging out car window

This dog is finally on the adventure he’s always been waiting for!

Where is he going?

Who is he with?

What will he do?

30. Broken Vase
broken vase on the floor

Oh, no! How did this vase get broken?

Who does it belong to?

What will happen when it is discovered?

31. Embarrassing Moment

embarrassed kid

Why is this kid so embarrassed?

What did she do? Or what happened to her?

What does she do next?

32. Light Spear

Man with light spear near ocean

Who is standing on the beach and what is he holding?

What is happening with the ocean?

Is he working with the ocean or is the ocean his enemy?

What will happen next?

33. Celebrate!

decoration of birthday party table with sweets for child

You have been invited to the biggest party of the year!

What is the party celebrating?

Who is there? What food is being served?

What do you do for fun at the party?

34. Digging Dogs

dogs digging a hole

You are on a beach vacation and your dogs start furiously digging a hole. 

Why are they digging?

What do they find?

What do you do with their find?

35. Worm Hole

Worm hole

A worm hole appears in your bedroom. What happens when you jump through it?

Can you time travel through it? If so, which time period would you go to?

Does it take you anywhere you want to go on Earth? Where would you jump to?

Can you go to other galaxies?

36. Underwater City

city under water

How did this city flood?

Did humans survive and adapt to the water…or do fish rule the city now?

If you could live here, would you want to?

37. Strange Aircraft in the Woods

Alian space ship on earth

You go for a walk during your family’s camping trip and get turned around. Suddenly you see this in a clearing. 

Is it a spaceship or military aircraft? Will you meet aliens? 

Who is inside? Do they want to meet you? Do you want to meet them?

Why did the ship come?

38. Cage Door Left Open

Empty cage for picture writing prompt for kids

Uh oh. It looks like something escaped from the cage.

What was inside? Who let it out?

Will it come back? Who will go looking for it? What will they find when they go looking for the creature?

39. Talking Animal


While playing in your yard, you discover a talking cat!

Write down your conversation.

How did you find out it could talk? What did the cat have to say?

What was the cat’s personality like? Why was it in your yard?

40. Alien Life

River on another planet

NASA has finally discovered a planet full of life! You have been tasked with traveling to the planet to make first contact with the aliens.

How are the aliens like us? How are they different? How does the first meeting go?

How is the planet like Earth? How is it different?

Which place would you rather live?

41. Ships 

Large ship with sails

This ship is setting sail on a critical mission. Where is it going? 

Exploring for new lands? Conquering new lands?

In search of treasure? What will they find instead?

42. Dinosaurs Live!

dinosaurs still alive today with humans

In this world, dinosaurs never went extinct. Describe a day in your life with dinosaurs!

How is it fun?

How might it be dangerous?

Do you interact with the dinosaurs or hide from them? Do you have them as pets? Friends? Workers in your society?


I know these writing exercises will be a hit with your students this school year!

They really are the best friend of the teacher who wants to bring fun and imagination into writing.

Once you’ve gone through these images, consider having your students make up their own writing prompts or check out video writing prompts too!

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One Comment

  1. Ty I looked a lot of places for the idea in my head and I found it here
    Much appreciation

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