Daily Writing Prompts - January

January Writing Prompts

Below are daily writing prompts for the month of January. The majority of the prompts are related to the various events on our January Events Calendar. These events include birthdays, holidays, monthly celebrations, and important dates in history. Some of the dates include two different writing prompts to choose from. You can download a PDF form of the writing prompt.

Daily Writing Prompts

Even though your students may not be in class all the days of January, use the prompts from those days as additional writing practice.

Don't forget to also print a copy of our January Events Calendar. This will help you utilize the daily writing prompts.

More Lesson Plans! We also have a number of other January Activities, Lesson Plans and Resources.

Writing Prompts: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

COPYRIGHT NOTICE: The text below is protected by copyright. You may NOT republish any of the prompts below on any internet website. For more details, please read our Terms of Use.

January 1
On this day in 1892, Ellis Island opened.  Put yourself in the shoes of those first immigrants to the United States.  What do you think were some of their feelings, their hopes, and their fears? Free PDF
On January 1, 1752, Betsy Ross was born.  As you may know, she sewed the first American flag.  If you were asked to create a new flag for the United States, what would it look like?  Explain why you made your design choices. Free PDF
Today is “New Year's Day.” It’s the first day of the new year. A fresh start. A time to look forward to what the next year might have in store for you. Think of ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 2
The drinking straw was patented on this day in 1888. You have been asked to organize the first ever “Drinking Straw Olympics.” What types of activities would you create for the special event? Remember, the main item for all activities needs to be the straw. Free PDF
On this day in 1975, a scientist discovered the winter home of at least twenty million monarch butterflies. After many years of research and butterfly tracking, it was discovered that they were migrating to the mountains of Mexico. What do you think are some of the challenges butterflies might face during their migration journey? Free PDF
Today is “National Buffet Day.” Endless bowls and plates...so many of us love a good ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 3
Author J.R.R. Tolkien was born on this day in 1892. Tolkien is best known as the author of “The Lord of the Rings.” This book became a movie. Many people, possibly even you, enjoy comparing the original book to the movie. Which do you think people should do first, read the book or see the movie? Explain your thinking. Free PDF
Alaska became the forty-ninth state in 1959. Is Alaska a state that you would like to visit? Why or why not? If you have already visited Alaska, what did you like or not like about your visit? Free PDF
Today is “National Drinking Straw Day.” Back in 1888, the drinking straw was invented by Marvin C. Stone. What is ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 4
Jacob Grimm was born on this day in 1785. Jacob and his brother are known for the “Grimm’s Fairy Tales.” Which two fairy tales would you like to see combined? Make a writing plan of how you would combine the characters, setting, plot, problem, and solution. (If you have time, you may want to write the actual story.) Free PDF
January 4th is Trivia Day. Can you think of a fun trivia question to share with your friends or family on this special day? If possible, consider using some resources in your classroom. Free PDF
On this day in 1809, Louis Braille was born. After suffering an accident and an eye infection, Louis went blind at three. He later went on to invent Braille raised dot system that is still used today by blind people for reading and writing. How do you think your life would be different if you were blind? If you are blind, how do you think your life would be different if you could see? Free PDF
January 4th is “National Spaghetti Day.” This yummy pasta can be topped with everything from cheese, to ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 4th is “National Trivia Day.” Over the years, we have come to know ‘trivia’ as odd, obscure ... - Premium Prompt (Grades 3-12) *New*
January 5
On January 5, 1925, the first woman governor, Nellie Ross, was inaugurated in Wyoming. Would you like to be the governor of your state? Why or why not? Free PDF
Today is National Bird Day.  Keep track of all the birds you see today.  Use the Internet or a bird identification book to identify them. Free PDF
In 1933, construction of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco began, with it opening on November 30, 1936. Many believe this to be one of the most beautiful bridges. Do you think the Golden Gate Bridge is a beautiful structure? Why or why not? What do you like or dislike about it? Free PDF
Today is “National Bird Day.” Bird watching is hobby enjoyed by people around the world. Take some time ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 6
Poet Carl Sandburg was born on this day in 1878. Select your favorite style (e.g. haiku, free verse, cinquain, etc.) of poetry and write a poem.  Free PDF
On January 6, 1912, New Mexico became the forty-seventh state. Is this a state that you would like to visit? Why or why not? If you have already visited New Mexico, what did you like or not like about your visit? Free PDF
Today is “National Technology Day.” What is the ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
Today is “National Technology Day.” Advancements in technology have shaped our world. What ... - Premium Prompt (Grades 4-12) *New*
January 7
In 1789, the first U.S. Presidential election was held.  If you were running for President at that time, what issue(s) would you have based your campaign on?  Free PDF
Today is Old Rock Day.  List all the possible uses for a rock.   Free PDF
January 7th is “National Bobblehead Day.” These head-bobbing figurines have become very popular in recent years. Most of them are made for ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 8
Elvis Presley was born on this day in 1935.  Presley is well known as “The King of Rock and Roll.”  Do you have a certain song or type of music that you listen to depending on your feelings?  Explain why you listen to this song or type of music. Free PDF
Today is “National JoyGerm Day.” See how many germs of joy you can spread! Laugh, be happy and spread kindness. What is ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 9
The 1st U.S. balloon flight occurred on this day in 1793.  Would you like to take a ride in a hot air balloon?  Why or why not? Free PDF
January 9th is National Static Electricity Day. Write about an example of when static electricity surprised you or made something fun happen.  Free PDF
On January 9, 1913, Richard Nixon was born. Before becoming our thirty-seventh President, he attempted to become the governor of California, but lost the election. Would you rather be a President or a governor? Explain your thinking. Free PDF
The second Monday of January is always “Clean off Your Desk Day.” Some people believe that a messy desk is a sign ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 10
The first meeting of the United Nations General Assembly occurred on this day in London in 1946. Do you think the United Nations is important for countries to work together? Why or why not? What do you imagine might happen if countries didn't cooperate with each other through organizations like the United Nations?  Free PDF
On this day in 1901, the first major oil strike was made near Beaumont, Texas. This discovery began the Texas petroleum industry. There are several new energy sources that have been developed over the past decades. What do you think are the advantages/disadvantages to using various forms of energy? Free PDF
Today is “National Cut Your Energy Costs Day.” This might seem like a big task, but every little bit can help. Make ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 11
On this day in 1964 Luther Terry, the U.S. Surgeon General, shared the results of a study on the effects of cigarette smoke. The study had found that cigarette smoking was the cause of most lung cancer deaths. Create an ad or a persuasive paragraph encouraging people (of any age) not to smoke. Free PDF
Today is “Secret Pal Day.” Select someone in your classroom or school. Write that person a short note or letter explaining why you appreciate them. Remember…don’t sign your name. Have someone else deliver your special message.  Free PDF
January 11th is “National Milk Day.” “Got milk?” has been a popular slogan for years. Why ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 12
January 12th is Work Harder Day.  Think of a way that you can work harder today.  This can either be at school or at home.  Write about your plan. Free PDF
On January 12, 1773, the first public, American museum opened. The Charleston Museum, located in Charleston, South Carolina, offered visitors the opportunity to learn about the natural history and culture of the region. Why do you think museums are important to our society and societies around the world? Free PDF
Today is “National Marzipan Day.” Marzipan is a type of sweet made from honey or sugar, along with ground almonds. It is often used formed into ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 13
Today is “Make Your Dreams Come True Day.”  What are your dreams?  Write about the dreams you have for your future.  Explain how you are going to make them come true. Free PDF
On this day in 1910, the first radio broadcast was heard by a few people in New York city who had radio receivers. Later in 1915, Lee De Forest, the inventor of the vacuum tube, began to broadcast nightly opera concerts. Compare this early technology of listening to music to that which we have today. Free PDF
Today is “National Sticker Day.” During the 1880s, the European merchants created a gum paste that allowed them to place labels on ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 14
January 14th is “National Dress-Up Your Pet Day.”  How do you think our pets feel when we dress them up in clothing?  Describe what may be going on in a pet’s head while they are being dressed-up. Free PDF
January 14th is “National Dress Up Your Pet Day.” You have probably seen at least one video of a pet dressed up ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 15
On this day in 1929, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was born. We honor his birth the third Monday of January. He delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. Beginning with those same words, write your own speech about your hopes for our world and its people. Free PDF
On this day in 1967, the first Super Bowl played.  Green Bay defeated Kansas City by a score of 35 to 10.  To make it to the Super Bowl, football teams must work together.  What do you think is the most difficult part of working with other students, or in teams, at school?  What are the advantages of working with others? Free PDF
On January 15, 1936, Henry Ford, the founder of Ford Motor Company, established the Ford Foundation. This organization supports a variety of causes, including artistic and educational programs. If you were able to create your charitable foundation, what type of foundation would it be and who would you help? Free PDF
Today is “National Hat Day.” Hats are worn to stay warm, as part of a uniform, to honor a sports team, or to just ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 15th is “National Hat Day.” Hats are worn to stay warm, as part of a uniform, to honor a sports team, or to just ... - Premium Prompt (Grades 4-12) *New*
January 16
On January 16, 1932, Dian Fossey was born. Dian is well known for her work with the mountain gorillas in Africa. If you could choose one endangered animal to research and become an expert on, which animal would you choose and why? Create a “Help Wanted” poster that will encourage others to care about this animal. Free PDF
Today is “National Do Nothing Day.”  If you could invent your own day, what would it be called?  What would you want people to do on your special day? Free PDF
January 16th is “National Nothing Day.” This is a day you can just sit and do nothing to celebrate it! Do you ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 17
On this day in 1706, Benjamin Franklin was born. Due to his contributions as one of the Founding Fathers, Franklin is pictured on the $100 bill. If there was an opportunity to replace him, who would you choose to place on this bill? Explain your thinking.  Free PDF
At 4:31 A.M., on January 17, 1994, an earthquake measuring 6.6 hit southern California. The quake caused nearly $20 billion in damage. Do you think earthquakes are scary or fascinating? Why do you feel that way? What are some things people can do to stay safe during an earthquake? Free PDF
January is “National Oatmeal Month.” Oatmeal is often considered ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 18
On January 18, 1803, the first official exploration of unknown spaces was undertaken by the United States government.  This exploration was conducted by Lewis and Clark.  Would you liked to have joined these two on their adventure?  Why or why not? Free PDF
On this day in 1779 Peter Mark Roget was born. Even though he did much work in mathematics and the motion picture industry, he is recognized most for publishing Roget's Thesaurus, the world's best-known thesaurus. Your teacher will provide you with 5-10 words. Using a Roget's Thesaurus, find at least one synonym for each of those words. Free PDF
Today is “National Winnie the Pooh Day.” This day honors the birthday of author A.A. Milne, the creator of Winnie the Pooh and his friends. Pooh and his friends go on ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 19
January is “National Thank You Month.” Take a minute and create a list of everyone who you could send a thank you card/letter. (This doesn’t have to be for a gift.) Select at least one of these people and write them a card or letter. Free PDF
January 19th is Inauguration Day. This is the day on which the President of the United States is sworn in and takes office. If you could be President for one day, what would you like to accomplish? Free PDF
January 19th is “Popcorn Day.” If you could create your own flavor of popcorn, what would it be and why?  Free PDF
January 19th is “National Popcorn Day.” Covered in butter, chocolate, caramel, or just plain salt...popcorn is a favorite snack of ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 20
Today is “Cheese Day.”  Describe all the different ways you could eat cheese. Free PDF
Today is “National Cheese Lover’s Day.” Every cheese lover enjoys a good grilled cheese sandwich. What ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 21
Today is “National Hugging Day.”  Make a list of the people you would like to hug. Free PDF
Today is “National Hugging Day.” Based on research hugs can bring happiness ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 22
On this day in 1984, the Apple Macintosh was introduced. Since 1984 computers have evolved a great deal. What do you think computers may look like in the next 20 years? Be sure to include a sketch with your writing.  Free PDF
January is “National Sunday Supper Month.” Sunday supper is traditionally a time for families to ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 23
Today is “National Measure Your Feet Day.” Have everyone in your class measure their feet, collect the measurements, and then find the following landmarks in your data: mean, mode, median, maximum, and minimum. Consider creating a graph of your classrooms’ data as well. Free PDF
January 23rd is “National Handwriting Day.” Do you ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-3) *New*
January 23rd is “National Handwriting Day.” There is a great debate surrounding ... - Premium Prompt (Grades 3-12) *New*
January 24
On this day in 1848, gold was discovered in California at Sutter's Mill by John Marshall.  Would you have liked to have been an early miner?  Why or why not?  What do you think it was like for these men? Free PDF
Today is “National Compliment Day.” Receiving just a simple compliment can ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
Tomorrow, January 25th, is “National Opposite Day.” Make ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 25
On January 25, 1924, the first Winter Olympics were held.  What is your favorite event to watch during the Winter Olympics?  Explain your answer. Free PDF
January is “National Hobby Month.” What hobby ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 26
Today is “Australia Day.” It marks the date that Australia was first settled in 1788. Is Australia a place that you would like to visit? Why or why not? If you have already visited Australia, what did you like or not like about your visit?  Free PDF
Chinese New Year begins on the new moon that appears between January 21st and February 20th. The Chinese zodiac features 12 different animals. If you could pick any animal to represent yourself, which would it be and why? (BONUS: If you are able to, use resources to learn your zodiac symbol).   Free PDF
Today is “National Green Juice Day.” This is a day to help people focus on ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 27
On this day in 1832, author Lewis Carroll was born.  His most famous piece of work was Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.  Who is your favorite character in this book and why? Free PDF
January 27th is “National Chocolate Cake Day.” Some people would consider this ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 28
Today is the birthday of Sesame Street character, Ernie. If you could create a television show for kids, what type of a show would it be? What is its name? What type of information would it contain? Free PDF
On this day in 1915, the modern-day United States Coast Guard was founded. It was originally created by Congress back in 1790 as the Revenue-Marine. The Coast Guard helps keep our oceans and shores safe. Can you think of some examples of how the Coast Guard might rescue people or protect the environment? Free PDF
January 28th is “National Blueberry Pancake Day.” Pancakes, or flapjacks, are a popular breakfast ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 28th is “National Data Privacy Day.” Keeping your personal information private is ... - Premium Prompt (Grades 4-12) *New*
January 29
Today is “National Puzzle Day.”  What is your favorite type of puzzle to solve and why? Free PDF
Today is “National Puzzle Day.” Puzzles are a great way to keep ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 30
On January 30, 1882, the 32nd President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, was born. He was the only U.S. president to be elected four times, serving from 1933 to 1945. After the ratification of the 22nd Amendment in 1951, all other presidential terms were limited to two terms. Do you think it’s good to have a limit on how long a President can serve? Explain your thinking. Free PDF
January is “National Soup Month.” Think about your favorite ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*
January 31
Today is “Chinese New Year” and the beginning of the Year of the Horse.  Using resources in the classroom, learn five (5) facts about Chinese New Year and summarize them in your own words. Free PDF
On this day in 1919, baseball great Jackie Robinson was born.  What do you think it takes to be a great athlete?  Write about the characteristics and qualities it takes for someone to reach a level of greatness in a sport. Free PDF
Today is “National Inspire Your Heart with Art Day.” How does art ... - Premium Prompt (Grades K-12) *New*

DISCLAIMER: We have provided “suggested” grade levels for some of our writing daily prompts. These suggestions are made based on the content of the prompt, the interest level of the topic, or the level of background knowledge needed to have the most success possible with the prompt. Please remember that these are suggestions only and each prompt can be modified as needed by you, the teacher. Don’t hesitate to get creative and rework the prompt to best fit the age/needs of your students!

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