Griffin Teaching

Insider GCSE creative writing tips + 106 prompts from past papers

by Hayley | Mar 9, 2023 | Exams , Writing | 0 comments

Are you feeling a little bit twitchy about your child’s English GCSE writing task?

Sciences and humanities – although sometimes daunting in their content – seem a fair bet as ‘revisable’ topics. But the creative writing element of the English Language GCSE is less knowable and ultimately more of a frightening prospect for a student keen to do well.

Preparing for the GCSE writing task? You don’t need to do it alone.

We run a weekly online writing club which prepares students to write high-scoring content. Our “Higher” level club is designed to transform your writing so that you can ace the GCSE language paper.

What is the GCSE writing element of the GCSE Language Paper?

There are 5 key GCSE exam boards: AQA , OCR , Pearson Edexcel , WJEC Eduqas and CCEA . Each board sets their own papers which may appear much the same at first glance (bizarrely they all have a similar front cover layout and fonts). Certainly there is plenty of overlap between their mark schemes and the comments and tips they share in their Examiner Reports.

However, as with all your child’s other subjects, it is essential to know which exam board they are preparing for. You may be surprised to discover that schools pick and choose boards by subject, perhaps choosing AQA for chemistry and OCR for mathematics. Individual school departments have their own preferences. My brother teaches at a school where their English Literature and English Language exams have been split between two different boards. This is unusual though, not the norm!

What forms (question formats) can the test take?

It varies by board.

The AQA board has a writing task in their Question Paper 1 called Explorations in creative reading and writing . Students are given two prompts to choose between. The AQA board also has a second persuasive writing task in Paper 2 called Writers’ viewpoints and perspectives.

Jump ahead to AQA creative writing and persuasive writing prompts from past GCSE papers

The Pearson/Edexcel international iGCSE favoured by many UK private schools has two prompts to choose between for each section. The student is asked to complete a piece of transactional writing (perhaps a persuasive speech or an advertisement leaflet) and additionally a piece of imaginative writing.

Jump ahead to Pearson/Edexcel transactional writing and imaginative writing prompts from past GCSE papers

Interestingly, the WJEC Eduqas board favours non-fiction writing. Unit 2 Reading and Writing: Description, Narration and Exposition gives two prompts to choose between, for an account and an essay perhaps, and Unit 3: Reading and Writing: Argumentation, Persuasion and Instructional sets up a letter, or similar.

Jump ahead to WJEC Eduqas non-fiction writing prompts from past GCSE papers

The OCR board offers two prompts to choose between. One might be a talk for other students and the other might be a letter on a difficult subject .

Jump ahead to OCR creative writing prompts from past GCSE papers

The CCEA board has a writing task in called “ Writing for Purpose and Audience and Reading to Access Non-fiction and Media Texts” and a second writing task which offers a choice between personal writing and creative writing.

Jump ahead to CCEA persuasive writing, personal writing, and creative prompts from past GCSE papers

How long do students have to craft their piece of writing?

Creative writing tests are timed at either 45 minutes or 1 hour. The last thing your child will need is to prepare to write for an hour, only to find they have just three-quarters of an hour on the day. If in doubt, insist that they check with their teacher.

AQA students are given 45 minutes to produce their writing response. The introduction advises: ‘ You are reminded of the need to plan your answer. You should leave enough time to check your work at the end.’ What this means is that 30–35 minutes max is what’s really allowed there for the writing itself.

Pearson/Edexcel allows 45 minutes for each of the two writing tasks.

OCR students are given an hour to complete this section of their exam. The introduction states: ‘You are advised to plan and check your work carefully,’ so they will expect the writing itself to take 45–50 minutes.

How long should the completed GCSE writing task be?

Interestingly, although the mark schemes all refer to paragraphingthey don’t state how many paragraphs they expect to see.

‘A skilfully controlled overall structure, with paragraphs and grammatical features used to support cohesion and achieve a range of effects’ (OCR)
‘Fluently linked paragraphs with seamlessly integrated discourse markers’ (AQA)

Why? Because management of paragraph and sentence length is a structural technique available to the student as part of their writers’ toolkit. If the number of optimal paragraphs were to be spelled out by the board, it would have a negative impact on the freedom of the writer to use their paragraphs for impact or to manage the pace of the reader.

For a general guide I would expect to see 3 to 5 paragraphs in a creative piece and 5 paragraphs in a persuasive piece. Leaflets have a different structure entirely and need to be set out in a particular form to achieve the top notes of the mark scheme.

What are the examiners looking for when they are marking a student’s creative writing paper?

There are two assessment objectives for the writing itself:

  • It has to be adapted to the form, tone and register of writing for specific purposes and audiences.
  • It has to use a range of vocabulary and sentence structures, with appropriate paragraphing, spelling, punctuation and grammar.

As a GCSE English nerd, I really enjoy delving deeper into the Examiner Reports that each board brings out once the previous cohort’s papers have been marked. They are a fascinating read and never disappoint…

Within their pages, examiners spell out the differences they have spotted between the stronger and the weaker responses.

For example, a creative task set by the AQA board was to describe a photograph of a town at sunset. The examiners explained that some of the strongest responses imagined changes in the scene as darkness descended. They enjoyed reading responses that included personification of the city, and those that imagined the setting in the past, or the weariness of the city. Weaker candidates simply listed what was in the picture or referred directly to the fact it was an image. This chronological-list approach weakened the structure of their work.

No surprises that some weaker students relied heavily on conversation. (As an exam marker myself, I dreaded reading acres of uninspiring direct speech.)

Pearson/Edexcel explain that weaker persuasive pieces (in this case on the value of television) simply listed pros and cons rather than developed ideas fully to clarify their own opinions. The higher-level responses here were quirky and engaging, entertaining the reader with a range of appropriate techniques and making the argument their own.

What accommodations are possible for students who have specific learning difficulties?

The UK Government’s Guide for Schools and Colleges 2022: GCSE, AS and A Levels includes information about changes to assessments to support ‘disabled students.’ Their definition of disabled includes specific learning difficulties (dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD, ADD, ASD etc).

Exam boards can make a wide range of adjustments to their assessments. Some of the most common adjustments are:

  • modified papers (for example, large print or braille exam papers)
  • access to assistive software (for example, voice recognition systems or computer readers)
  • help with specific tasks (for example, another person might read questions to the student or write their dictated answers)
  • changes to how the assessment is done (for example, an oral rather than a written assessment, word-processing rather than hand-writing answers)
  • extra time to complete assessments
  • exemptions from an assessment

The exam board will expect paperwork to be in place where your child’s specific needs are formally reported by an appropriate professional (Educational Psychologist, Clinical Psychologist, Consultant). The report needs to be recent, but how recent is difficult to confirm.

If your child is likely to need adjustments to their access arrangements you will need to discuss this with their school in plenty of time before the exam itself.

A close friend of mine realised in the final few weeks before her son’s GCSE exams that his tinnitus would have a negative impact on his performance. She approached the school to ask if he might take his exams in a separate room to minimise noise disturbance. Unfortunately, it was far too late by then to apply, and her son was denied the request.

Your child’s school will explain the process for applying for special arrangements and will be able to advise you on what your expectations should be. Never presume your child will be given what they need – but plenty of requests are successful, so stay positive and make sure your paperwork is in order beforehand.

Tips and strategies for writing a high scoring GCSE creative writing paper:

1.         learn the formats.

Know the different formats and conventions of the different GCSE writing tasks. There is a standard layout for a leaflet, for example, where including contact details and a series of bullet points is part of the mark scheme. Not knowing these conventions will knock back a student’s score.

2.         Plan ahead

Prepare a planning structure for each of the written forms you might encounter during the exam. It may need to be flexed on the day, but it will banish fear of the blank page and allow you to get started.

3.         Prepare sentence-openings

Familiarise yourself with appropriate sentence-openings for each type of GCSE writing task. Fronted adverbials of time and place will improve the quality of a creative piece, whereas access to varied and specific conjunctions might push up the mark of a transactional piece.

4.         Check your speaking

Ask your family to check your speech at home. Every now and then try to flip a sentence into formal language, using more interesting synonyms for your usual spoken vocabulary. This will help you to write formally on paper, avoiding colloquialisms.

5.         Forget finishing

Finishing is less important than you might imagine. Sloppy, hurried work is your enemy. GCSE examiners will follow your clear planning and mark you accordingly, even if you’ve not managed to complete that final paragraph.

6.         Note the details

The question often gives additional information the examiner would like to see included. Note it in your plan to make sure it doesn’t get forgotten.

7.         Start strong

Use your best sentence-opener at the start of each paragraph. It will set you up as someone to be taken seriously.

8.         Cut back dialogue

Keep dialogue contained in a single paragraph. Focus on description of the speaker and their actions before noting the second character’s reply.

9.         Revise

Do this by prepping work as above. Nothing beats it.

Would you like me to transform your child’s writing in my higher writing club?

Each week in my higher writing club , we spend 20 minutes on Zoom together. After the task has been introduced, the students write for 15 minutes. Next, they upload their work for 1:1 video marking.

There is no point prepping essays/creative pieces for the GCSE English Language exam if your child’s writing is poor. First, their scruffy presentation, attention to detail, punctuation, grammar and vocabulary need to be addressed.

After 2 months in the higher writing club your child’s written technique and fluency will be transformed by our 1–2-1 video marking system (consistent messaging is achieved by matching your child with their own teacher).

Each weekly activity is drawn directly from the GCSE English Language Subject Content and Assessment Objectives , published by the English Department of Education.

Here’s an example of a student’s writing, BEFORE they joined our club:

Handwriting and creative writing sample from a GCSE level student - before online writing lessons

It is chaotic, poorly-presented and nonsensical. Letter-sizing is confused and the student is clearly anxious and repeatedly scribbling through small errors.

Below is the same student 2 months later:

Handwriting and creative writing sample from a GCSE level student -after 2 months of weekly online writing lessons with Griffin Teaching

Observe the rich vocabulary, authorial techniques (the jagged rocks are ‘like shards of broken glass’) and general fluency and sophistication.

Real and recent GCSE example questions/prompts from each of the 5 key exam boards

Aqa english language gcse questions, paper 2 writers’ viewpoints and perspectives:.

  • ‘Our addiction to cheap clothes and fast fashion means young people in poorer countries have to work in terrible conditions to make them. We must change our attitude to buying clothes now.’ Write an article for a magazine or website in which you argue your point of view on this statement. ( Source )
  • ‘People have become obsessed with travelling ever further and faster. However, travel is expensive, dangerous, damaging and a foolish waste of time!’ Write an article for a news website in which you argue your point of view on this statement. ( Source )
  • ‘Cars are noisy, dirty, smelly and downright dangerous. They should be banned from all town and city centres, allowing people to walk and cycle in peace.’ Write a letter to the Minister for Transport arguing your point of view on this statement. ( Source )
  • ‘All sport should be fun, fair and open to everyone. These days, sport seems to be more about money, corruption and winning at any cost.’ Write an article for a newspaper in which you explain your point of view on this statement. ( Source )

Paper 1 Explorations in creative reading and writing:

  • A magazine has asked for contributions for their creative writing section. Either write a description of an old person as suggested by the picture below or write a story about a time when things turned out unexpectedly. ( Source )

Image of a man with a beard, example image to use as a GCSE creative writing prompt

  • Your school or college is asking students to contribute some creative writing for its website. Either, describe a market place as suggested by the picture below or write a story with the title, ‘Abandoned’. ( Source )

image of a market scene to use as a creative writing prompt

  • Your local library is running a creative writing competition. The best entries will be published in a booklet of creative writing. Either, write a description of a mysterious place, as suggested by the picture below or write a story about an event that cannot be explained. ( Source )

image of a round entrance to a spooky scene to use as a gcse creative writing prompt

  • A magazine has asked for contributions for their creative writing section. Either, describe a place at sunset as suggested by the picture below or write a story about a new beginning. ( Source )

OCR English Language GCSE questions

Paper: communicating information and ideas.

  • Either, Write a post for an online forum for young people about ‘A moment that changed my life’.
  • Or, You are giving a talk at a parents’ information evening about why all children should study science at school. Explain your views. ( Source )
  • Either, Write a letter to a friend to describe a challenging and unpleasant task you once had to do.
  • Or, Write a short guide for new workers about how to deal successfully with difficult customers. ( Source )
  • Either, “Was it worth it?” Write an article for a magazine to describe a time when you had to do something difficult.
  • Or, Write a speech for an event to congratulate young people who have achieved something remarkable. ( Source )
  • Either, Write the words of a talk to advise pet owners how to make life more enjoyable for their pet and themselves.
  • Or, Write an article for a travel magazine to describe your dramatic encounter with an animal. ( Source )
  • Either, ‘How I prefer to spend my time.’ Write the words of a talk to young people about your favourite activity
  • Or, Write a magazine article to persuade parents to allow their teenage children more freedom. You are not required to include any visual or presentational features. ( Source )
  • Either, Write a talk for other students about a person you either admire strongly or dislike intensely
  • Or, Write a letter to a friend to explain a difficult decision you had to make. ( Source )

Paper: Exploring effects and impact

  • Either, Hunger satisfied. Use this as the title for a story.
  • Or, Write about a time when you were waiting for something. ( Source )
  • Either, The Taste of Fear Use this as the title for a story.
  • Or, Write about a time when you were exploring a particular place. ( Source )
  • Either, Alone. Use this as the title for a story.
  • Or, Describe a time when you found yourself in a crowd or surrounded by people. ( Source )
  • Either, Land at Last. Use this as the title for a story.
  • Or, Imagine you have visited somewhere for the first time and are now reporting back on your experience. ( Source )
  • Either, The Playground Use this as the title for a story
  • Or, Write about a memory you have of playing a childhood game. ( Source )
  • Either, It seemed to me like I had been magically transported. Use this as the title for a story.
  • Or, Describe a place where you have felt comfortable. ( Source )

Pearson Edexcel English Language iGCSE questions

Paper 1: transactional writing.

  • Either, ‘In our busy twenty-first century lives, hobbies and interests are more important than ever.’ Write an article for a newspaper expressing your views on this statement.
  • Or, ‘We are harming the planet we live on and need to do more to improve the situation.’ You have been asked to deliver a speech to your peers in which you explain your views on this statement. ( Source )
  • ‘ Zoos protect endangered species from around the world.’ ‘No wild animal should lose its freedom and be kept in captivity. Write an article for a magazine in which you express your views on zoos.
  • Write a review of an exciting or interesting event that you have seen. ( Source )
  • Your local newspaper has published an article with the headline ‘Young people today lack any desire for adventure’. Write a letter to the editor of the newspaper expressing your views on this topic.
  • ‘The key to success in anything is being prepared.’ Write a section for a guide giving advice on the importance of preparation. ( Source )
  • You and your family have just returned from a holiday that did not turn out as you expected. Write a letter to the travel agent with whom you booked your holiday, explaining what happened.
  • A magazine is publishing articles with the title ‘Friendship is one of the greatest gifts in life’. Write your article on this topic. ( Source )
  • ‘Important lessons I have learned in my life.’ You have been asked to deliver a speech to your peers on this topic.
  • Your local/school library wants to encourage young people to read more. Write the text of a leaflet explaining the benefits of reading. ( Source )
  • ‘Most memorable journeys.’ A website is running a competition to reward the best articles on this subject. Write an article for the competition about a memorable journey.
  • ‘Cycling is one form of exercise that can lead to a healthier lifestyle.’ Write a guide for young people on the benefits of exercise. ( Source )
  • ‘Television educates, entertains and helps global understanding.’ ‘Television is to blame for society’s violence and greed and delivers one-sided news.’ You have been asked to deliver a speech in which you express your views and opinions on television.
  • ‘Choosing a career is one of the most important decisions we ever make.’ Write the text of a leaflet that gives advice to young people on how to choose a career. ( Source )
  • Write the text for a leaflet aimed at school students which offers advice on how to deal with bullying.
  • A museum is planning to open a new exhibition called ‘Life in the Twenty-First Century’. ( Source )

Paper 2: Imaginative writing

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, enjoyed success
  • Write a story with the title ‘A Surprise Visitor’.
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that begins ‘I did not have time for this’ ( Source )

two images to choose to use as a story starter for a gcse creative writing prompt that begins with "I did not have time for this"

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, challenged an unfair situation.
  • Write a story with the title ‘Bitter, Twisted Lies’.
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that begins ‘It was a new day …’ You may wish to base your response on one of these images. ( Source )

two images to use for GCSE creative writing practice. Image 1 is of a woman on top of a mountain at sunset, the second image is of a harbour at sunset with a bridge in the field of view

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, visited a new place.
  • Write a story with the title ‘The Storm’
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that ends ‘I decided to get on with it.’ ( Source )

Two images to use as GCSE writing prompts. Students are asked to choose one and start their story with the words "I decided to get on with it"

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, saw something surprising.
  • Write a story with the title ‘The Meeting’.
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that starts ‘Suddenly, without warning, there was a power cut.’ ( Source )

Two images to use as GCSE writing prompts. The first shows two children sitting at a table lit by candles, the second is of a city scene with half of the buildings lit up and the other half shrouded in darkness

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, went on a long journey.
  • Write a story with the title ‘A New Start’
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that begins ‘I tried to see what he was reading. ( Source )

two example images students can use while revising for the GCSE wri5ting task. Both are on the theme of reading.

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, felt proud.
  • Write a story with the title ‘The Hidden Book’.
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that begins ‘It was like a dream’ ( Source )

Two images from past GCSE papers to use as a prompt for creative writing.

  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, had to be brave
  • Write a story with the title ‘Everything Had Changed’
  • Look at the two images below. Choose one and write a story that begins ‘It was an unusual gift’. ( Source )

Two images of presents that students can use to start a story with "it was an unusual gift."

WJEC Eduqas English Language GCSE questions

Unit 2 reading and writing: description, narration and exposition.

  • Write an account of a time when you enjoyed or hated taking part in an outdoor activity.
  • “It’s essential that more people are more active, more often.” (Professor Laura McAllister, Chair of Sport Wales) Write an essay to explain how far you agree with this view, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • Describe an occasion when you did something you found rewarding.
  • Famous chefs such as Jamie Oliver and Mary Berry have spoken of the need for better food and better education about food in schools. Write an essay to explain your views on this subject, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • Write an account of a visit to a dentist or a doctor’s surgery.
  • NHS staff, such as doctors and nurses, provide excellent service in difficult circumstances. Write an essay to explain your views on this subject, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • Write an article for a travel magazine describing somewhere interesting that you have visited.
  • You see the following in your local newspaper: ‘Young people are selfish. They should all be made to volunteer to help others.’ Write an essay to explain your views on this subject, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • Describe an occasion when technology made a difference to your life.
  • Write an account of a time you were unwilling to do something. ( Source )
  • Describe a time when you faced a challenge
  • Write an essay explaining why charity is important, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • Write an account of a time when you did something for the first time.
  • “It’s time for us to start making some changes. Let’s change the way we eat, let’s change the way we live, and let’s change the way we treat each other.” Tupac Shakur Write an essay on the subject of change, giving clear reasons and examples. ( Source )
  • “School uniform is vitally important in all schools.” Write an essay explaining your views on this, giving clear reasons and examples.
  • Describe a time when you had to create a good impression. ( Source )

Unit 3: Reading and writing: Argumentation, persuasion and instructional

  • Your school/college is considering using more Fairtrade items in its canteen. Although this will help to support Fairtrade farmers, it will mean an increase in the price of meals. You feel strongly about this proposal and decide to write a letter to your Headteacher/Principal giving your views. ( Source )
  • Increasing litter levels suggest we have lost all pride in our beautiful country. Prepare a talk for your classmates in which you give your opinions on this view. ( Source )
  • Write a guide for other students persuading them to stay safe when using social media and the internet. ( Source )
  • According to your PE teacher, ‘Swimming is the very best form of exercise.’ You have been asked to prepare a talk for your classmates in which you give your views about swimming. ( Source )
  • You read the following in a newspaper: ‘Plastic is one of the biggest problems faced by our planet. Why would we use something for a few minutes that has been made from a material that’s going to last forever?’ Write a letter to the newspaper giving your views on the use of plastic. ( Source )
  • “People today never show enough kindness to one another. We must make more effort to be kind.” Write a talk to give on BBC Wales’ new programme Youth Views persuading young people to be kind to others. ( Source )
  • ‘We have enough problems in the world without worrying about animals.’ Write an article for the school or college magazine giving your views on this statement.
  • You would like to raise some money for an animal charity. Write a talk for your classmates persuading them to donate to your chosen charity. ( Source )

CCEA English Language GCSE questions

Unit 1: writing for purpose and audience and reading to access non-fiction and media texts.

  • Write a speech for your classmates persuading them to agree with your views on the following issue: “Young people today are too worried about their body image.” ( Source )
  • Write an article for your school magazine persuading the readers to agree with your views on the following question: “Should school uniform have a place in 21st century schools?” ( Source )
  • Write a speech for your classmates persuading them to agree with your views on the following question: “Are celebrities the best role models for teenagers?” ( Source )
  • Write an article for your school magazine persuading the readers to agree with your views on the following statement: “Advertising is just another source of pressure that teenagers don’t need!” ( Source )

Unit 4: Personal or creative writing and reading literacy and non-fiction texts

  • Either, Personal writing: Write a personal essay for the examiner about what you consider to be one of the proudest moments in your life.
  • Or, Creative writing: Write your entry for a creative essay writing competition. The audience is teenagers. You may provide your own title. ( Source )
  • Write a personal essay for the examiner about an experience that resulted in a positive change in your life.
  • Write a creative essay for the examiner. The picture below is to be the basis for your writing. You may provide your own title. ( Source )

Picture of a family waiting at an airport.

  • Personal writing: Write a speech for your classmates about the most interesting person you have ever met.
  • Creative writing: Write a creative essay for your school magazine. The picture below is to be the basis for your writing. You may provide your own title. ( Source )

picture of two elderly men playing soccer

  • Personal writing: Write a personal essay for the examiner describing your dream destination.
  • Creative writing: Write a creative essay for publication in your school magazine. The picture below is to be the basis for your creative writing. You may provide your own title. (Source)

picture of a two people mountain climbing

Get 1:1 support and personalized feedback on your GCSE creative writing practice

For 1–2-1 writing support for your pre-GCSE child, join the Griffin Teaching Higher Writing Club—online weekly writing classes specifically tailored to English GCSE creative writing preparation.

In just 20 minutes per week and their writing will be transformed.

creative writing gcse question 5

AQA GCSE English Language Past Papers

This section includes recent GCSE English Language past papers (9-1) (8700) from AQA. You can download each of the AQA GCSE English Language past papers and marking schemes by clicking the links below.

November 2022 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

November 2022: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

November 2022: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert    -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

June 2022 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

June 2022: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

June 2022: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

November 2021 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers (Labelled as June 2021)

November 2021: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

November 2021: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

November 2020 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers (Labelled as June 2020)

November 2020: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

November 2020: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

June 2019 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

June 2019: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

June 2019: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

November 2018 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

November 2018: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert   -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

November 2018: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert     -    Download Past Paper    -  D  ownload Mark Scheme

June 2018 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

June 2018: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert   -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

June 2018: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -     Download Past Paper     -     Download Mark Scheme

November 2017 AQA GCSE English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

November 2017: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -     Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

November 2017: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -     Download Past Paper     -    Download Mark Scheme

June 2017 AQA GCSE English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers

June 2017: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert    -    Download Past Paper    -    Download Mark Scheme

June 2017: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert      -     Download Past Paper     -    Download Mark Scheme

For more GCSE English Language past papers from other exam boards  click here .

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Creative Writing Booklet AQA Paper 1 Q5

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This work on teaching creative writing is created on Power Point. Each slide prints out as an A4 page, so it can easily be made into a booklet. Scheme of work for Paper 1 question 5, including model responses. All the pieces of writing are original, but not all the ideas behind them are. A lot of ideas in this booklet have been influenced and shaped by reading and watching other people’s contributions. I hope I have been clear as to where I owe a debt of gratitude in my acknowledgements which are attached to the Power Point

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creative writing gcse question 5

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September 22, 2021.

Paper 1 Question 5: Creative Writing

This part of the exam is where your written creativity will be tested. Although the quality of your communication was assessed previously, this is the first question where the examiner will be looking closely at your spelling, punctuation, and grammar. Make sure that you proofread your work! People miss their grade by 2 or 3 marks regularly and proofreading is worth 16 marks all by itself!

There are two different styles of question you could answer for this question. Click on the links below to find out more:

creative writing gcse question 5

How to tackle a short story question

creative writing gcse question 5

How to tackle a descriptive writing question

creative writing gcse question 5

Paper 2 Question 5: Letter Model Answer ( AQA GCSE English Language )

Revision note.

Sam Evans

Paper 2 Question 5 Model Answer: Letter

In Question 5, you will be presented with a writing task based on a statement. The subject matter will be related to the reading in Section A. This means you can adapt some of the ideas in the texts you read and use them in your own writing. 

The question asks you to write for a specific purpose and in a specific format. It is important to use the correct conventions of the format and directly focus your writing to its purpose, as the mark scheme rewards adapting tone, style and register for different forms, purposes and audiences. 

This means: 

  • The tone (sound of the writer’s ‘voice’) is appropriate and convincing 
  • The register (vocabulary and phrasing)  is appropriately formal or informal, and suitable for the purpose
  • The style of the writing (sentence structure and overall structure) is dynamic and effective 

Below you will find a detailed model letter in response to an example of Paper 2 Question 5, under the following sub-headings (click to go straight to that sub-heading):

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Author: Sam Evans

Sam is a graduate in English Language and Literature, specialising in journalism and the history and varieties of English. Before teaching, Sam had a career in tourism in South Africa and Europe. After training to become a teacher, Sam taught English Language and Literature and Communication and Culture in three outstanding secondary schools across England. Her teaching experience began in nursery schools, where she achieved a qualification in Early Years Foundation education. Sam went on to train in the SEN department of a secondary school, working closely with visually impaired students. From there, she went on to manage KS3 and GCSE English language and literature, as well as leading the Sixth Form curriculum. During this time, Sam trained as an examiner in AQA and iGCSE and has marked GCSE English examinations across a range of specifications. She went on to tutor Business English, English as a Second Language and international GCSE English to students around the world, as well as tutoring A level, GCSE and KS3 students for educational provisions in England. Sam freelances as a ghostwriter on novels, business articles and reports, academic resources and non-fiction books.

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GCSE English Language Paper 1 - Creative Writing Q + Grade 9 Exemplar Answer

GCSE English Language Paper 1 - Creative Writing Q + Grade 9 Exemplar Answer

Subject: English

Age range: 14-16

Resource type: Worksheet/Activity

Kriss_Tutor's Shop

Last updated

23 June 2021

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creative writing gcse question 5

Attached is a June 2018 Paper 1 Question 5 writing task followed by a grade 9 exemplar that would achieve 24/24 on Content and Organisation as well as 16/16 on technical accuracy. Can be used as practice for any exam board creative writing task.

Going through exemplar answers with students is a fantastic way of teaching them to become better writers. Just like reading a book, this teaches them creativity as well as showing them what is expected of them in an exam situation to achieve the top marks.

All students will definitely benefit from going through such an exemplar.

Teaching Ideas:

  • Perhaps ask students to look through the exemplar and find any literary techniques that have been utilised.
  • Ask students to find any deeper ideas that may have been embedded by the writer.
  • Ask students to identify structural features of the response and comment on why it makes the exemplar interesting.
  • Task the students with writing their own response to the question, trying to use similar and additional techniques to make their writing perhaps even better, without copying the exemplar.

Hope you find this extremely useful! Do come back and let me know how this has worked in the classroom!

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IMAGES

  1. AQA GCSE Language Paper 1 question 5- Creative writing Revision

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  2. Question 5 AQA English Language

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  3. AQA Creative Writing Paper 1 Lesson & Example Question 5's by

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  5. GCSE English Creative Writing "Past Papers"

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  6. AQA Language Paper 1

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COMMENTS

  1. Paper 1 Question 5: Creative Writing Model Answer

    Below you will find a detailed creative writing model in response to an example of Paper 1 Question 5, under the following sub-headings (click to go straight to that sub-heading): Writing a GCSE English Language story

  2. Paper 1 Question 5: Creative Writing

    Paper 1 Question 5 is the writing question. It asks you to apply what you know about imaginative and creative fiction writing, such as in the text you read in Section A, and use these same techniques in your own writing. AO5 rewards you for your ideas, as well as the style and the fluency of your writing. As this task is worth 50% of the paper ...

  3. AQA: Paper 1 Question 5 Revision

    Question Format. For Question 5 in the AQA GCSE English Language exam, you have a choice of two questions to answer. You can either write a description based on an image, or you can write a story with a title relevant to the theme of the paper. On the right is an example question in the same format that you will find in your exam.

  4. Paper 1 Question 5: Descriptive Writing

    In Question 5, you will be set a question that asks you to write either a piece of creative writing or a piece of descriptive writing. Here, we will focus on the descriptive writing task, which is different to a short story, under the following sub-topics (click to go straight to that sub-topic):

  5. PDF Question 5 In this lesson, we will be revising for AQA English Language

    Activity 3 - Considering Question 5 Question 5 of English Language Paper 1 is your creative writing question. You will be given a picture as a prompt and two choices of what to write. These usually include writing a description based on the picture or the beginning of a short story. If you find you have included elements of both, it does not ...

  6. Insider GCSE creative writing tips + 106 prompts from past papers

    Unit 2 Reading and Writing: Description, Narration and Exposition gives two prompts to choose between, for an account and an essay perhaps, and Unit 3: Reading and Writing: Argumentation, Persuasion and Instructional sets up a letter, or similar. Jump ahead to WJEC Eduqas non-fiction writing prompts from past GCSE papers.

  7. AQA English Language GCSE

    This is a lesson about how to answer the creative writing question Q5 with a focus on vocab and grammar and a look at the mark scheme. Some hints and warning...

  8. GCSE Creative Writing Practice Questions for AQA

    File previews. pdf, 1.61 MB. A set of twenty practice exam questions designed for Creative Writing Question 5, AQA 2015 Specification for English Language GCSE (Paper 1, Section B). Each question is an either/or, containing one picture based prompt, and one regular prompt. All questions are formatted similarly to the AQA specimen papers.

  9. 50 Practice Questions for Creative Writing (AQA Style)

    This resource is a PDF file containing 50 original prompts and questions for teaching/practising creative writing.Each page is one 'AQA Language Paper 1, Question 5'-style question, with a choice of a descriptive or narrative response.. There are a range of images, some more abstract and challenging than others, to suit students of all abilities.

  10. English Language Paper One Question Five Revision & Exam Practice

    pptx, 10.15 MB. pdf, 7.14 MB. pptx, 54.34 MB. In this bumper pack of practice questions, there are over ninety creative writing questions in the style of AQA's GCSE English Language Paper One Question Five (Q5), as well as two revision lessons. The practice exam questions - on a range of topics - can be given to students as extra revision ...

  11. Creative Writing GCSE Structure Sheet and Practise Question

    Written By Lottie Ingham. Creative writing can be fun but it can also seem daunting in an assessment setting. Have a go at a Question 5 Paper 1 question using the planning sheet below to help build your ideas. Download Worksheet. Want to submit your full creative writing piece for marking?

  12. Creative Writing: How To Get 40/40 In Question 5 Explained in 8 Mins

    Join my £10 GCSE 2024 Exams Masterclass. Enter Your GCSE Exams Feeling CONFIDENT & READY! https://www.firstratetutors.com/gcse-classes Check out our 'Ultimat...

  13. AQA GCSE English Language Past Papers

    June 2019 AQA GCSE (9-1) English Language (8700) Past Exam Papers. June 2019: Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (8700/1) Download Insert - Download Past Paper - Download Mark Scheme. June 2019: Paper 2: Writer's Viewpoints and Perspectives (8700/2) Download Insert - Download Past Paper - Download Mark Scheme.

  14. (AQA English Language Paper 1 Question 5

    (AQA English Language Paper 1 Question 5 - Creative Writing) Write a story with the title, 'The Holiday'. [40 marks] I never wanted to be here in the first place. After two trains, three buses and hours of car journey we find ourselves in the middle of nowhere. Yesterday we arrived late evening and the whole family was in a grumpy mood ...

  15. Creative Writing Booklet AQA Paper 1 Q5

    Description. This work on teaching creative writing is created on Power Point. Each slide prints out as an A4 page, so it can easily be made into a booklet. Scheme of work for Paper 1 question 5, including model responses. All the pieces of writing are original, but not all the ideas behind them are. A lot of ideas in this booklet have been ...

  16. Paper 1 Question 5: Language Techniques

    Remember, Question 5 requires you to use appropriate language for the audience, purpose and form of the writing in the question. Therefore, the best answers will demonstrate a well-planned answer which has considered the most effective ways to use language and structure in your creative or descriptive writing.

  17. GCSE English Language

    Paper 1 Question 5: Creative Writing. This part of the exam is where your written creativity will be tested. Although the quality of your communication was assessed previously, this is the first question where the examiner will be looking closely at your spelling, punctuation, and grammar. Make sure that you proofread your work! People miss ...

  18. AQA English Language Step by Step guide to Question 5 Creative Writing

    AQA English Language Step by Step guide to Question 5 Creative Writing. Subject: English. Age range: 14-16. Resource type: Assessment and revision. File previews. docx, 16.64 KB. Attached is a two page guide to support all students with how to complete a high quality response to a question 5 question on paper 1 .

  19. GCSE English Language: Creative Writing in an Exam

    Sophia Thakur and Solomon O.B. sit a mock English GSCE language exam. Suitable for teaching English language at GCSE and National 4 and 5.

  20. AQA English Question 5 resource- creative writing

    Useful for GCSE AQA English Language Paper 1, Question 5. Best printed in A3. Great revision tool. Space for students to construct generic sentence styles to then use in their exam or other creative writing opportunities. Hopefully it is useful! Creative Commons "Sharealike" Reviews Something went wrong, please try again later. ...

  21. Creative Writing Question Practice AQA Specimen Papers

    Creative Writing Question Practice. AQA English Language Paper 1 Question 5: Practise Exam Experience - Prisoners. 5.0 (8 reviews) AQA English Language Paper 1 Question 5: Practise Exam Experience - Lightning. 5.0 (2 reviews) AQA English Language Paper 2 Question 5: Five Practice Questions. 4.7 (6 reviews)

  22. Paper 2 Question 5: Letter Model Answer

    Below is an example of the type of letter you may be asked to write in Question 5. This is taken from the AQA GCSE English Language June 2019 exam paper: Genre (what) A letter to the editor of a newspaper: Audience (who) ... Paper 1 Question 5: Creative Writing; Paper 1 Question 5: Descriptive Writing; Paper 1 Question 5: Language Techniques ...

  23. GCSE English Language Paper 1

    Subject: English. Age range: 14-16. Resource type: Worksheet/Activity. File previews. pdf, 179.6 KB. Attached is a June 2018 Paper 1 Question 5 writing task followed by a grade 9 exemplar that would achieve 24/24 on Content and Organisation as well as 16/16 on technical accuracy. Can be used as practice for any exam board creative writing task.