The first year of high school is one of the most significant times in a teenager’s life. As students face new responsibilities and enjoy all new freedoms and privileges, they begin to renegotiate their personal identities and come to a greater understanding of who they are. When you combine this transitional period with all of the hormones and the experience of starting out at a brand new school, it’s easy to see why freshmen year can be an especially challenging time for young students.
Fortunately, there is one classroom activity that can help to keep your students grounded and confident in themselves and their actions—and that activity is journaling. When students write, they come to know themselves on a deeper level. They also begin to naturally feel more confident in their ideas and opinions, which enables them to become more comfortable speaking out and participating in the classroom. As your students tackle tough topics like ethical dilemmas, Internet citizenship, and the pressures that both teenage girls and boys face today, they’ll develop new ideas, form critical arguments, and improve their own self-esteem.
Use these all-new 9th grade journal prompts to help young high school students transition successfully into their new space—and to equip them with the tools they need to make good decisions in the coming years!
32 Topics to Write About for Ninth Graders
- What is your favorite thing about being in high school? Why?
- What part of high school have you found to be the hardest? Why?
- If you could tell your younger self anything, what would it be?
- What is the best way our country could reduce violence in schools?
- If you had to write a creed for yourself and your life, what qualities would it include?
- What is the best feeling in the world? Why?
- What is the worst feeling in the world? Why?
- Write about a time when you faced an ethical dilemma. What did you do?
- How much time do you spend getting ready each morning? Write about your typical routine.
- Do you ever feel like you can say things on the Internet that you wouldn’t say in real life? Why or why not?
- What does it mean to be a responsible citizen of the Internet?
- What do you think being in love is like? How does someone know when he or she is in love?
- What is plagiarism? Why is it such a bad thing?
- How can you derive inspiration from someone else’s work without stealing it?
- What is your weakest quality? Is this something about yourself you’d like to change?
- What is the greatest act of service you can complete for someone else?
- How frequently do you use social media? What platforms do you use, and why?
- Should employers be allowed to require employees to share access to their social media accounts? Why or why not?
- What is the coolest technological advancement you’ve seen in your life?
- What is the most important issue our world faces today? Write about your stance on the issue.
- Do you ever feel pressured to look or act a certain way? When? Why or why not?
- What is the best compliment you’ve ever received? How did it make you feel?
- Can a story be both fiction and non-fiction at the same time? When is it okay to include fictional details in a true story?
- In your opinion, what is the most important charitable cause? Why?
- If you had to choose a single song to describe your life, what would you choose? Why?
- What are the two biggest pressures teenage girls face? Write about why the pressures exist and what could be done to combat them.
- What are the two biggest pressures teenage boys face? Write about why the pressures exist and what could be done to combat them.
- Write about a time when you realized someone wasn’t who you thought he or she was.
- Do you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert? Why?
- Write about a new rule your parents have instituted in the last two years. Do you think this rule is fair?
- Do you think that violent video games encourage people to commit real-life violence? Why or why not?
- If you could have any question answered, what would you ask—and why?
Until next time, write on…
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