Ben has become quite the fan of C. S. Lewis. Of course, one might expect that from such a fan of The Chronicles of Narnia, but surprisingly, his admiration for this modern day apologist has actually been ignited by another of his works.
After listening to the C. S. Lewis at War audio drama from Focus on the Family (about 10 times), Ben has been diving into reading Mere Christianity. I know — that’s quite a read for a young teen. Thankfully, we have the Mere Christianity Critical Analysis Journal to help us sort through the often difficult text.
Reading from Mere Christianity has sparked many <ahem> interesting conversations lately as Ben is confronted with some pretty “grown-up” topics. Being the “unit study” mom that I am, it occurred to me that this interest in C. S Lewis, and the subsequent discussions, could be parlayed into some writing assignments as well. But one has to be a little sneaky about these things, so rather than just asking Ben to write narratives on what he is reading, I have turned his interest and my love for C. S. Lewis quotes into creative writing assignments.
(be sure to read all the way through to find out how you can download your FREE set of creative writing prompts and notebooking pages from the quotes of C. S. Lewis)
I simply give Ben the quote with the assignment to write for 15 minutes whatever the quote inspires in him. He is free to interpret the meaning of the quote, explain what image it conjures up, or to give his opinion about whether or not he is in agreement with the quote. Grammar, punctuation, spelling, and neatness do not count.
For most creative writing assignments, he is given a list of questions to help him sort through the exercise:
1. How do you feel?
2. What image comes to mind?
3. What details do you need to share?
4. Who is your audience?
5. How do these statements compare to the Truth of Scripture?
6. Do you agree or disagree with the statement? Why or why not?
Soon Ben will be contributing to Ben and Me as an author. It is my hope that he will blog his writings from these creative writing exercises, so that you can read them. It is often surprising to me to read his insights.
I don’t think your students need to have read Mere Christianity to enjoy these writing assignments (in fact not all of them come from that book), and most bright middle school and all high school students will benefit from the critical thinking and self-evaluation that is likely to result from these writing prompts.
Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither.
The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.
The real problem is not why some pious, humble , believing people suffer, but why some do not.
If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.
True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.
The truth is, of course, that what one regards as interruptions are precisely one’s life.
Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage.
No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good.
The instrument through which you see God is your whole self. And if a man’s self is not kept clean and bright, his glimpse of God will be blurred.
God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.
I have created a set of FREE notebooking pages that can be used for these writing prompts. Each quote is featured with plenty of room for your student to write. Be sure to check out my set of creative writing prompts and notebooking pages for quotes from U. S. Presidents as well.
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