Memorable Narrative Essay Writing Practice Exercises

Narrative essay writing is best taught with a combination of brainstorming, outlining and practice writing exercises that encourage students to write in the past tense and use appropriate transitions. Teaching narrative essay writing is quite enjoyable as it allows students to write about personal experiences.

5 characteristics of narrative writing include:

1. A narrative typically tells a story from a particular point of view, and this point of view is usually that of the narrator.

2. A narrative often has a plot, which is a sequence of events that the story follows.

3. A narrative may have characters, who may be either fictional or based on real people.

4. A narrative typically takes place in a specific time and place.

5. A narrative may have a theme, which is a central idea or message that the story conveys.

1 “First Day at University” (narrative essay transitions exercise with answers)

This is an exercise to help students understand transitions in narrative essays.

Narrative essay transitions exercise

Narrative essay transitions (PDF)

First Day at University audio

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2 Narrative paragraph practice (favorite memories)

This is an exercise for students to practice writing narrative or past tense sentences about happy moments and experiences. Students look at the pictures and try to tell a story in 2-5 sentences.

Favorite memories narrative writing exercise

Narrative writing practice-favorite memories (PDF)

3 Brainstorming an important event (narrative essay)

This is a brainstorm worksheet for a narrative essay about an important event.

Brainstorming narrative essay ideas exercise

Brainstorming an important event (PDF)

4 Narrative transitions sentence writing worksheet

This is an exercise challenging  students’ understanding of narrative transitions. They have to create an appropriate narrative situation for each transition.

Narrative transitions worksheet

Narrative essay transitions sentence writing worksheet (PDF)

5 Narrative sentences practice (or past tense writing exercise)

This is an exercise for students to practice writing narrative or past tense sentences. Students look at the pictures and try to tell a story in 2-5 sentences.

Narrative writing sentences exercise

Narrative writing sentences  (PDF)

7 Brainstorming influential life experiences (with answers)

This is an exercise for students to brainstorm ideas and write sentences in preparation for a personal profile essay using narrative techniques. On page 1 they use the vocabulary to write short sentences for suitable for each picture. On page 2 they write the sub-topics they might use in an essay and explain their experience in a few sentences.

Narrative essay lesson for life experiences.

Influential experiences writing practice (PDF)

Other resources

Transportation and  getting around

Daily routines speaking and reading exercises

Talking about houses and neighborhoods

Sentence starters

Activities for the present continuous

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