Brainstorming Ideas: Turning a boring topic into exciting nonfiction

by  Authors on Call, iNK Think Tank

Program image

In this interactive presentation, I will introduce students to one of the most important tools in a writer's tool box - the ability to find a fresh slant or angle to even the most boring topic. We will discuss where ideas come from, and what to do when confronted with that dreaded assignment.  Together we will brainstorm a number of topics with my simple technique to create dozens of unique writing opportunities.

Program Rating

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About This Program


Multipoint: $300.00
Multipoint Premium: $270.00

The price is per site. iNK Think Tank will invoice and collect the fee.


45 minutes

Target Audience

Education: Grade(s) 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, Parent, Adult Learners

Minimum participants:

no minimum

Maximum participants:

No maximum, but for optimum participation 40.

Primary Disciplines

Language Arts/English, Literacy, Problem Solving, Writing

Program Delivery Mode

Field Trip Zoom

Booking Information

Sorry, this program is not currently available. To inquire about future availability, please contact Authors on Call, iNK Think Tank

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Provider's Cancellation Policy

I will make every effort to re-book. However, a cancellation with less than 2 weeks notice will incur a $100.00 kill fee.

About This Provider

Content Provider logo


Authors on Call, iNK Think Tank

White Plains, NY
United States

The Common Core State Standards have focused attention on process and using nonfiction in the classroom. Our Authors on Call from iNK Think Tank embody the CCSS. This team uses their extraordinary breadth of knowledge to transform today's classrooms into vital centers of learning. These authors are experts in processing enormous amounts of information, sifting through it and synthesizing it into works with added value. So why not talk to these masters of 21st century skillsand let them unpack their process for your students? They are eager to share their knowledge with you and to help you inspire your students with books kids love to read about subjects you're required to teach. So far our authors include Jan Adkins, Vicki Cobb,  Roxie Munro, Dorothy Hinshaw Patent,Carla Killough McClafferty, Kerrie Hollihan, Aline Alexander Newman, David M. Schwartz, Alexandra Siy,  Peggy Thomas, Marissa Moss, Jan Adkins, and Andrea Warren. Keep coming back as we add more authors and new programs.

Vicki Cobb

Program Details


1. After a brief introduction to my books, I will discuss where ideas come from, and the importance of developing an idea into a workable writing project.

2. We will discuss what happens when writers are assigned a topic, and I will demonstrate my brainstorming technique that helps me discover new ways to approach an tired subject.

3. I will lead the class in brainstorming their own ideas.

4. Q and A


Participants will learn how writers get their ideas.
Participants will gain insight into the importance of a fresh slant.
Participants will acquire a new strategy to create their own ideas.
Participants will practice their critical thinking skills as they assess what is a good idea.

Standards Alignment

National Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.1.W.2 -- Write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.3.RL.6 -- Distinguish their own point of view from that of the narrator or those of the characters.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.3.W.5 -- With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, and editing. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1–3 up to and including grade 3.)
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.3.W.6 -- With guidance and support from adults, use technology to produce and publish writing (using keyboarding skills) as well as to interact and collaborate with others.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.RI.8 -- Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.SL.1 -- Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 4 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.SL.1d -- Review the key ideas expressed and explain their own ideas and understanding in light of the discussion.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.W.1a -- Introduce a topic or text clearly, state an opinion, and create an organizational structure in which related ideas are grouped to support the writer’s purpose.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.W.2d -- Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.4.W.7 -- Conduct short research projects that build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.5.W.1 -- Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons and information.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.6-8.RST.2 -- Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; provide an accurate summary of the text distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.Author can adjust to meet specific needs

State Standards

Author can adjust to meet specific needs.