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I love journaling; it is part of my daily self-care routine, and since my daughter wants to be a mini-me, I wasn’t at all surprised when she wanted to start journaling, “just like mommy.”
While free-writing is fun and has its place in the world of journaling, even I am stumped for ideas sometimes. What to journal about?
Journal prompts for kids and adults make the journaling process so much easier because you have a topic and it’s easier to find inspiration when putting ideas and pen to paper.
You want to set your child up for success when they start journaling to help calm their mind, self-reflect, regulate their emotions, and make sense of the world.
So let your little one (even if they are a teenager) start with these fun journal prompts for kids of all ages!
But first, what is a journal prompt and what are the benefits of using a prompt?
What Are Journal Prompts?
A journal prompt, also called a writing prompt or journal writing prompt, is a tool that anyone can use when they journal, whether they are newbies to journaling or have been journaling for years and decades.
In essence, a journal prompt helps you gather your feelings and thoughts and serves as inspiration when you don’t know what to write.
A blank page can either be really scary or it can jump-start your creative juices. You can even alternate between these two feelings (scary vs excitement), and then journal prompts, which are a jumping off-point, are there to save the day.
I think of them as the superhero for journaling practice since they are so helpful.
A journal prompt can be a question, word, sentence, quote, song lyric, or even an image.
Why Are Journal Prompts Useful, Especially for Kids?
You may struggle with a blank page in your journal staring at you and asking you, “what’s the topic for the day?”
So, what’s a child, who doesn’t have your life experiences, supposed to do with a blank page? Sure, some kids are just super creative and will tackle an empty page with gusto.
But you may also want to direct their thoughts to a particular topic, and that’s where a prompt, whether it’s a simple word or an involved sentence or photo, can really be helpful.
Plus, kids are taught to write with the use of writing prompts. There are fill-in-the-blank sentences and later on stories, essay topics meant to inspire creativity, and even homework with topics or questions to answer.
Thus, using journal writing prompts for kids are simply an extension of what they already know, so they feel at ease with the journaling assignment (and later, they’ll realize the benefits of journaling and journal for themselves).
Benefits of Using Journal Prompts
When you use journal writing prompts, whether you are a child, teenager, or adult, you stand to benefit quite a lot.
The main benefits of using prompts when you journal—it:
71 Journal Prompts for Kids
Use these journal prompts to get your kids in the habit of journaling:
Journal Prompts About Family
1. Who is your favorite grown-up in your family? What do you admire about this person?
2. Who do you look up to most in your family? Why?
3. Describe your ideal or favorite family vacation? What about it was special?
4. What holiday do you like to celebrate? Write about what you do.
5. Who in your family makes you feel the most loved, valued, and appreciated? How do they show they love and care about you?
6. Imagine your grown-ups having a “yes day.” Anything you ask of them; they need to say yes to. What do you ask for? What do you do?
Journal Prompts About Fantasy
7. If you could be a superhero, who would you be and what’s your superpower? Why did you choose this hero and power?
8. If you have a time machine and could travel to the past or future, where would you go? What would you do? And what’s it like there?
9. Pretend that you spend a month in space. To which planets, stars, and galaxies do you travel? What’s it like?
10. If you were a character in your favorite fairy tale or story book, what would you do? How would the story go?
11. Write a short story about what you’d do if you woke up one morning with fairy wings or a mermaid tail.
12. Imagine that you plant a sunflower, but it grows so tall it reaches the sky. You decide to start climbing the sunflower to the very top. What do you discover there?
Journal Prompts for Gratitude
13. What are 3-10 things you are grateful for today? Why are you thankful for them?
14. Describe 3-7 things that make you happy.
15. How do you feel when someone shares their gratitude for you or what you've done?
16. Write about a time when you showed your gratitude to someone, and you could see how much it meant to them.
17. Why do you think it is important to be thankful every day?
18. Write a thank you note or letter to your grown-up, teacher, or best friend.
Journal Prompts About Animals
19. If you could have any animal as a pet, what would it be, and why?
20. Write about your favorite pet and a special memory about this animal?
21. Do you think a magical animal like a unicorn or dragon would be a cool pet? What magical creature would you like as a pet and why?
22. If you could talk to an animal, what questions would you ask?
23. Imagine one animal species taking over the world. What would they do?
24. You’re a mad scientist and have invented a new animal. What is it called? What does it look like? What does it do?
25. If you could be an animal, what would you be and why?
Journal Prompts for Self-Discovery
26. List 5 things you are proud of today. Why do these things make you proud?
27. Write about 3 things you want to improve today. Why do you want to improve these things?
28. Write about a dream you have. Do you think you can achieve it? How?
29. What decision did you have to make today? Why did you make that particular decision, and do you think it was the right thing to do?
30. What is your favorite memory? Describe the memory in detail and what about it is so special to you?
31. What’s your ideal day like? What do you do? Where do you go? Who are you with?
32. What do you do when you are worried?
33. What’s the coolest job to have? Is that what you dream of doing when you grow up? Why or why not?
34. What’s your favorite book, TV show, or movie? What happens in the story? And what character do you admire or despise?
35. Think about your life 5, 10, 20, or 50 years in the future. What do you do? What’s happened?
Journal Prompts About Hobbies
36. What hobbies do you currently have? Which are your favorites?
37. If you had all the time and money in the world, what hobbies would you like to try?
38. What talent do you wish you had? Think of 1-3 ways you can start practicing it.
39. What’s your favorite toy or game to play? Why?
40. What TV show are you into at the moment? If you could change an episode, what would you change?
41. Imagine you are going on a trip to a deserted island, the jungle, or a desert. What do you pack in your suitcase for the trip, and what do you do at your destination?
Journal Prompts About School and Learning
42. Who is your favorite teacher? What do they look like, describe their personality, and why do you like them?
43. What is your favorite subject? What did you learn about that was super interesting?
44. What’s the strangest thing you learned about in school? What was strange about it?
45. What’s your favorite activity or game to play during recess? Why?
46. Write about your best friend(s). What do they mean to you?
47. Do you remember your first day of kindergarten or primary, middle, or high school? What was it like?
48. If you were the teacher today, what would you teach your students?
49. If you could change your school, what would you want to change about it?
Journal Prompts About the Future
50. List 3-5 things you are looking forward to tomorrow, next week, or next month. What makes you excited when you think about these things?
51. Write a letter to your future self. Who are you 10 years from now?
52. Write a letter to your past self. What message would you like to share with a younger you?
53. What do you want to be when you’re an adult? Why?
54. Imagine the world 100 years from now. What does everything look like? Are there still people on Earth?
Journal Prompts About Self-Love
55. What’s one thing you’ve done recently that required courage?
56. What do you say to yourself when things change, or you can try something new?
57. What do you love most about yourself? Why?
58. What are 3 things that make you happy? Why do they bring you joy?
59. List 3-5 strengths. Why are they strengths?
60. Write about 3-7 things you can do to help ensure you stay safe and healthy.
61. What self-care activities do you practice every day? How do they make you feel?
62. Why is it important to be your own best friend?
General Journal Prompts
63. What did you do that was fun today? Write about how these activities make you feel.
64. Find a quiet spot in your house or garden. Write about 3-5 sounds and smells around you.
65. If you could travel the world, where would you like to go and what would you do there? Think about places you’d visit, interesting people you’d meet, and exotic foods you’ll eat.
66. Think about your favorite season. What do you like about the season and what activities do you do?
67. What’s your favorite quote? What do you like about it and how does it reflect who you are or would like to be?
68. What is your favorite color? What does it mean to you or remind you of?
69. If you had $1,000, what would you do with the money? (And what if a snail kept chasing you all the way?)
70. Write a story or poem using these words: space, mermaid/pirate, swimming pool, elephant, apple, stars, and flowers
71. If you were rich and famous, or a movie star, what would your life be like?
Final Thoughts on Journal Prompts for Kids
Journal prompts for kids can help them get into the habit of daily journaling because it makes an empty white page a lot less scary.
As your child becomes more used to journaling, or when inspiration strikes, they can choose their own journal topic without the assistance of a writing prompt.
So let your child dive into the world of journaling and have fun while their overall well-being improves. Want to inspire your kid to be their best self? Then check out these 21 best TED Talks for kids. Or help your kid practice these kindness activities to learn how to be kind.
And if you're looking for more journaling prompts, be sure to check out these blog posts:
- 29 Journaling Prompts for Anxiety Help
- 151 Gratitude Journal Prompts for Daily Thankfulness
- 35 Mindfulness Journal Prompts for Students and Adults