Back to Writings

Chipped: A Dystopian Story

School: Pocatello Community Charter School

City/State: Pocatello, ID

Grade(s): 8

Format(s): Essay

Subject(s): English Language Arts

Type(s): Narrative

Writing Assignment Description

Guiding Questions:
Who decides what is right?
How do rights get taken away?

Students began the year studying WWII and dictators of the world, looking at how the dictators were able to take control of citizens and strip them of rights. Then students examined current issues and debated an affirmative or negative position on the issue, using rights or court decisions when applicable. They read Fahrenheit 451 as an example of a dystopian story.

Next, students started building their dystopian world by stating rights that would be stripped, identifying how they were going to give a rise in action, and a conclusion (sometimes a cliffhanger). They were allowed to write 3-12 pages; many students wanted to write more! They used Google Docs to write their stories. When they needed input or critiquing, they shared the doc with a friend or the teacher for comments. This essay is one of the final products of their studies.


How This Writing Can Be Useful

  • Excellent example of how the right topic can be motivating for students
  • Shows how a study of history can spark students' imagination
  • Showcases an essay that neatly draws the reader into the story and leaves the reader wanting more

Common Core State Standards

Standard Long Term Learning Target
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.
  • With support from peers and adults, I can use the writing process to ensure that purpose and audience have been addressed.
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose and audience.
Back to Writings