All students will have an opinion on this one! Get your kids involved in their school by asking them what THEY would improve. This subject is sure to get their problem solving and critical thinking skills going. Some teachers may find ways to tie these subjects in with Social Studies, History, or Civics classes..
Prompt 1: Your school is going to let the students vote on whether or not to go to school on Saturdays in exchange for a longer summer break. How would you vote and why?
Prompt 2: If you could make changes in your school lunchroom what would they be?
Prompt 3: If your principal asked you to write your opinion about what needed to be changed in your school what would you write?
Prompt 4: Due to trouble on the playground, the principal has sent home a letter stating there will no longer be an after-lunch recess. Write a letter to convince your principal to continue after-lunch recess. Before you start writing, reflect on what the problem was during recess. Think about why students need recess. Consider the benefits for the teachers. Decide what students and teachers can do to correct the problem. Think about the results of keeping recess during school. Now write a letter to convince the principal to continue after-lunch recess.
Prompt 5: If you were told you were going to be a teacher when you grew up, would grade level would you want to teach? What subject would be your favorite to teach?
Prompt 6: There are many concerns facing the student council in your school. As a member of the student council, write an editorial for the school newspaper about one concern and what you think can be done to solve the situation.
Prompt 7: The school board is thinking of making school days shorter (only four hours a day) or making the school week only four days a week. The catch is that there high school will be an extra year for you. Which would you prefer?
Prompt 8: The arts (music, art, drama, dance, etc.) and sports have important effects on people’s lives. Think of one of the arts or a sport that isn’t currently at your school and write a letter to your principal petitioning him to allow a program.
Prompt 9: Your class has decided to elect a class president. The class president will take attendance each morning, help plan parties, and collect money for field trips. Write an article for the class newspaper describing what kind of person would make a good president and why.
Prompt 10: Your school cafeteria wants to try a new menu–one with foods that kids will really like. Write a letter to your principal explaining what you think the cafeteria should have.
Prompt 11: Are there any problems in your school? Do you get too little time to eat lunch? Between classes is it hard to find a water fountain that works? In a letter, make your school principal aware of the problem and suggest a solution. Be sure to explain what the causes of the problem are, who is affected by it, and how something could be done to solve it.
Prompt 12: Students in your school are unhappy with the student bathrooms. Write a letter to your principal describing the problem and suggesting ways to solve it.
Prompt 13: Your locker is too far away from most of your classes to be helpful to you. Whenever you use it, you end up late to class. Think of a solution that would make it easier to not have to carry around all of your books all day. Write a letter to the principal outlining your ideas to make the locker problem work better for everyone.
Prompt 14: There is a great diversity in the income levels in your school. Some kids have all of the latest fashions, while other kids’ parents can’t afford as much. The school has decided to make everyone wear uniforms, so that the difference in the have and have-nots is not so noticeable. Do you think this is a good idea? Write a paragraph from the point of view of a child who has everything; then write one from a child whose family is struggling to buy school clothes.
Prompt 15: Think about what your class needs for it to be a better class. Explain the problem to your teacher and what your proposed solution is.