Writing Prompts for MarchBy James Wayne
Today is the birthday of Kenneth Grahame, the author of The Wind in the Willows, in which Mr. Toad gets into a lot of trouble for driving too fast. Some people think that a person who drives too fast repeatedly should not only lose his driver’s license, but have his car taken away and sold. What do you think of this idea?
Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., was born in 1841. He was famous for his writings on behalf of freedom. He once wrote, “We should be eternally vigilant against attempts to check the expression of opinions that we loathe.” What do you think he meant by that?
Joseph Lee was born in 1862. A wealthy philanthropist, he started a movement to build public playgrounds for children in the middle of big cities, so they would have safe places to play. What are three things you think every playground should have? Why those things?
Yuri Gagarin, the first human being to orbit the earth in a spacecraft, the Vostok I, was born in 1934 on a farm near Moscow, in what was then the USSR. Imagine how you would feel if you were in space. Write a paragraph about what you think the experience might be like.
In 1822, Charles Graham patented a new way of making false teeth based on making molds of the patient’s gums. Although false teeth are useful, they are far more troublesome and uncomfortable than real teeth. List five things you can do to take care of your teeth.
“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.” This quote is based on the words of Edmund Burke. What do you think it means?
Martial arts movie star Chuck Norris was born in 1940. He was the first martial artist to become a famous movie actor. Some people think martial arts movies and television shows encourage young people to become violent. Do you agree? Why or why not?
The first celebration of Mother’s Day is held in Grafton, West Virginia, in 1908. There are days for mothers, fathers, grandparents, and even for children. What group that does not already have a day needs one? Tell why you think that group needs a day of recognition, and some ways you think it should be celebrated.
1,900 years ago, paper was invented in China by Xai Lun. The year was 105 AD. How would your life be different if there was no paper, and the only thing you could write on was expensive stuff like parchment or papyrus?
In 1918, the Spanish Flu appeared in the US. Nearly 600,000 Americans, and many millions in other countries, died. Schools, businesses, stores, factories, public buildings, and churches were closed to encourage people to stay home. Suppose a disease like that happened today, and everyone was supposed to stay home, with everything shut down. What are 3 problems your family might have? What are 3 things you would do to pass the time?
In 1907, wealthy philanthropist Andrew Carnegie gave the City of New York money to build and equip 65 branch public libraries, one of many gifts for libraries he gave over the course of his life. Why do you think a wealthy person would give money to build public libraries? Tell three ways public libraries benefit a community.
The first bottles of Coca-Cola were sold in 1894. What are your 5 favorite soft drinks? List them in order and tell why you put them in that order.
(Based on the event above) Some people say that cola drinks are bad because they are so sugary and should not be sold to young people. Do you agree? Write your reasons for your opinion.
Astronomer William Herschel discovered the planet Uranus in 1781. It was the first planet discovered since ancient times, and the first one that cannot be seen without a telescope. Many people have objected to the pattern of naming planets of our sun only for Roman gods. They think that wider sources should be used. In the last few years, new objects the size of planets have been found orbiting the sun, and the name of Roman gods and goddesses is running out. What names would you suggest for new planets that may be discovered? Defend your suggestions.
In 1938, the CBS radio network began its first news program to feature news from outside the United States. List all the places you can get news today, then decide which one you find the most reliable and complete. Defend your choice.
In 1918, the first ship ever made of concrete was launched. Concrete is less expensive than metal for ships, but also more brittle. Think of something else usually made of metal that could be made of concrete. What would be the advantages of using concrete? What would be the disadvantages?
Hank Ketcham, the cartoonist who draws the Dennis the Menace cartoons, was born in 1920. What is your favorite comic strip character? Why do you like that one?
Famous scientist Albert Einstein was born in 1789. He once said, “If A equals success, then the formula is A equals X plus Y plus Z. X is work; Y is play. Z is keeping your mouth shut.” Do you agree with him? If so, tell why. If not, tell your own formula for success.