Creative Writing Workshops

  • “I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” – Anne Frank
  • “You don’t write because you want to say something, you write because you have something to say.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Wednesday WORKSHOP
FOR kids 
 8 to 12 YEARS OLD
When:  Your preferred date on a Wednesday, l-4 pm.
Fee:  $30 per student, includes a healthy snack and free consultation after the workshop
Where:  Beacon Avenue West, Sidney, BC
Creative writing is a way to express yourself and your feelings.  It is a way to clarify your ideas and beliefs and discover what you know or think about a topic.
Writing your own story can give you an enormous confidence boost as well as it will consolidate your literacy learning by putting your phonics, grammar and reading skills into practice. 
Ideas for writing are everywhere – it’s just a matter of noticing them. You might like to try carrying a notebook with you so you can write down ideas as they come to you. You might not use all of them straight away, but you can always come back to them for inspiration when you’re feeling stuck.
In this creative writing workshop, you will learn and will be prompted with ideas about your setting, plot, character, conversation or dialogue in your story.  

A.  The setting is where the story takes place.  It is the time and place or when and where of the story.

Here are some ideas for your Setting:

    At your local supermarket, you can find free property flyers full of pictures of houses for sale. Try picking out a house and using the images as a starting point for a story.

     Think of a place you know well. Make a list of details about this place – think about what you hear, smell, see, taste and feel. Start writing a story in this setting incorporating these details into the action.

    If you’re going to a new place, make an effort to take notice of interesting details. These might help you with settings for your stories in the future.

B.  Plot
The Plot is a literary term used to describe the events that make up a story or the main part of a story. These events relate to each other in a pattern or a sequence. It is a  causal sequence of events, the "why" for the things that happen in the story. The plot draws the reader into the character's lives and helps the reader understand the choices that the characters make. A plot's structure is the way in which the story elements are arranged.

Here are some ideas for your plot:
    Write down 10 professions (teacher, doctor, zookeeper) and 10 settings (Disneyland, a car wash, a movie theatre). Mix these up in a hat. Pick them out at random and see if the combinations inspire a story.
    Try writing continuously, nonstop, for 10 minutes. Don’t worry about spelling, grammar or even making sense. Just keep your pen moving. When 10 minutes is up, stop and have a look at what you’ve written. You might find some interesting ideas you don’t even remember writing.
    Try reading newspapers and magazines. Real life events might give you ideas for stories.

C.  Dialogue (conversation in stories)
Dialogue is defined as the words that your characters say to each other or to themselves throughout the story. It can be used to reveal character traits and personality, and it can also be used to propel the plot forward and show things as they happen in.
Dialogue should sound believable.  Don’t try to use big fancy words that nobody uses in normal conversation; use a voice you’d hear in everyday life.

Writers are good eavesdroppers. When you are out and about, notice the conversations going on around you. Write down anything that gives you a good idea.  

Try playing the Conversation Game with a friend. Pass a piece of paper back and forth between you, each of you writing one half of the conversation. You can write as characters or as yourselves.

When watching TV, listening to the radio or reading books, take note of any interesting phrases. You may like to use versions of these to add color to your dialogue.

D.  Character
A character is a person, animal, being, creature, or thing in a story. Writers use characters to perform the actions and speak dialogue, moving the story along with a plot line.
Here are some ideas for creating your character:

In magazines and newspapers, find pictures of people who look interesting. You may like to refer to these when describing characters.

 Before you start work on a new story, you might want to get to know your character better. One way of doing this is by making a list of their likes, dislikes, hobbies, friends, fears, dreams etc.

Sometimes choosing a name for your character is difficult. Try opening the phonebook at random and pointing somewhere on the page. Choosing an interesting name may give you ideas about what the character is like.

Prompts for creative writing:
A.  Use a story you have read as a springboard to write your own story.  If the story presents a problem, you can continue with your own version of the solution to the problem.  Or you can use the story ending as a spark to begin your own story.
B.  More prompts to create your own story:  

1. “Hi,” said the colt. “What are you?”
“I’m a dragon. You sure look different. What are you?”
(What happens next?)

2. If you could turn into a bird, what kind of bird would you be? Why?

3. If you could fly, where would you go first? Why?

4. If you were a bird, would you like people? Would people like you? Why or why not?

5. If you could turn into a dragon, would you like being around people? Why or why not?

6. If you were a dragon, what kind of dragon would you be and what would you eat?

7. If your mother could turn into a bird like you can, but your father was always human, would you spend more time with your human relatives or with your bird relatives? Why?

8. Would you like to play with other birds even if they weren’t the same kind of birds as you are?

9. Would you, as a bird, like to play with human children? Would they like to play with you?

10. Can a dragon, a bird and a horse be friends? Why or why not?
11.  What if red were the only color?
12.  What if children were in charge of parents?
13.  What if horses could ride people?
14.  What if dogs could talk?
C.  Loose Parts, another good prompt for creative writing.

Loose parts are mobile materials which can be moved, carried, combined, redesigned and taken apart and put back together in multiple ways. They can be natural things, such as leaves, sticks, stones or plants, or man-made such as clothes pegs, marbles, bits of fabric or buttons.
Try combining your loose parts in different ways. Try to build or create something, and then answer the following questions and see if they turn into a story!

l. What did you create?
2. How will you make it work?
3. How useful is it? What can it do for you and other people?
4. What is the name of the object?
5. What do you think it is made of?
6. Is it natural? If not, where do you think it came from?
7. What do you think the object/s could be useful for?
Remember, there are no wrong answers! Whatever your loose parts inspire is the right idea


To enroll your child in the Creative Writing Workshop, please complete the information below and email it to Adelina at
CHILD'S Name *
CHILD'S date of birth *
Second Child's Name (optional)
Please use this option only if enrolling a sibling or other child with the same caregiver details.
Second child's date of birth (optional)
Please use this option only if enrolling a sibling or other child with the same caregiver details.
Does your child have any medical conditions, behavioral issues, or learning needs I may need to be aware of? If yes, please give details below
Address *
Phone *
Email *
Emergency contact (in case I can't get hold of you) *
Phone Number
Please name any person's other than yourself authorized to collect your child, or specify if your child has permission to walk home: *
Is there anything else you would like me to know about your child? (optional)

About the Teacher:

Adelina Gotera is a BC Licensed Early Childhood and Special Needs Educator.  She has worked for twenty years in the childcare industry, as a daycare operator and  Early Childhood/Special Needs Educator in various childcare facilities in Vancouver and Vancouver Island. She had worked as Facilitator for the BC StrongStart Program, School District 63.
With her fruitful experience working with children, she wrote and published “Grandma Lives In Us” and “I Will Play With You” now available at Amazon in Kindle format.  With the publication of her two books, The Victoria Public Library awarded her twice as an Emerging Local Author. Her books are on the library's bookshelves.

Adelina is formerly a Professor, College of Commerce, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines, where she was a recipient of an award for her exemplary dedication to teaching.  She obtained her Master in Industrial Relations, on a  scholarship grant,  at the University of the Philippines, the country’s highly regarded university.

In her youth, she struggled between working for a living and studying.  With her perseverance and hard work, she finished her Bachelor of Science in Commerce at the College of Commerce, Manila, Philippines, the country’s highly regarded public college.

Contact Adelina


Email *

Message *