WRITING FRAMES: An Easy Answer for Struggling Writers

Students writing

A writing frame is a skeleton outline given to students to scaffold their writing. These templates provide students with a structure or outline for writing.

5 Benefits to Using writing frames

  1. Writing frames provide a structure for students to follow. This structure helps students to organize their thoughts and ideas in a logical manner.
  2. Writing frames support the writing process, especially for students who have difficulty with organization and planning.
  3. Writing frames help students to focus on the content, instead of being bogged down by the mechanics of writing.
  4. Writing frames support differentiated instruction by allowing educators to modify the amount of structure that students need.
  5. Writing frames can model a more advanced vocabulary and a sophisticated sentence structure for students to see.

How writing frames help struggling writers

Writing can be a daunting task for many people, and this is especially true for those who struggle with writing. However, writing is an essential skill that everyone needs to master, as it is a crucial aspect of communication and academic success. This is where writing frames come in. Writing frames are an excellent tool for struggling writers, as they provide a structure that helps guide their writing and make it more manageable.

In my classroom, I have found that writing frames reduce much of the anxiety associated with writing tasks. An online article in Edutopia refers to this type of activity as low-pressure writing.

https://www.edutopia.org/article/keep-low-stakes-writing-flowing/: WRITING FRAMES: An Easy Answer for Struggling Writers


A writing frame can be easily adapted to meet your learners’ needs. If a student needs more support, then put more text in the writing frame and fewer blanks. If a student is becoming more independent, then reduce the amount of text and insert more blanks and word choices. To make a task particularly difficult, add more word choices than there are blanks. That will require the student to select only the most relevant word choices for the task.

Cinco de Mayo Writing Frame: WRITING FRAMES: An Easy Answer for Struggling Writers

how to create a writing frame

Here are some steps to follow when creating a writing frame:

  • Identify the type of writing: Determine the type of writing that the students will be doing. For example, will they be writing a narrative, a persuasive essay, or a research paper?
  • Determine the structure: Based on the type of writing, determine the structure that the students should follow. For example, a narrative might have an introduction, rising action, climax, falling action, and conclusion. A persuasive essay might have an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
  • Break down the structure: Break down the structure into smaller parts that the students can focus on. For example, if the structure is an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion, break it down further by including what should be included in each section.
  • Provide sentence starters or prompts: Provide sentence starters or prompts for each section to help students get started. For example, for the introduction, provide a sentence starter like “In this essay, I will be discussing…” or a prompt like “Introduce the topic and explain why it is important.”
  • Leave room for creativity: While the writing frame should provide structure, leave room for creativity. Encourage students to add their own ideas and thoughts to the writing frame.
  • Review and revise: Review the writing frame to ensure that it covers all the necessary elements and is appropriate for the grade level and type of writing. Revise as needed

Writing frames for speech therapy

In my speech and language therapy sessions, I like to use writing frames to focus on expanding vocabulary. With these Spring Writing Frames, students are learning about the season, developing sentence structure and expanding vocabulary. In addition, students are learning and practicing vocabulary in context.

Writing Frames are a valuable tool in any teacher’s toolbox. With their adaptability and customizable format, teachers can create powerful teaching lessons for all students.


Cinco de Mayo Writing Frame on Teachers Pay Teachers

Check out more great activities for speech therapy here: