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Invention for Secondary School Students: Introduction


This page provides resources for grades 7-12 instructors and students

Contributors:Lauren Huebsch, Allen Brizee
Last Edited: 2014-10-12 01:19:42

Introduction to Invention (Grades 7-12)

The following Purdue OWL resource has been specifically designed to address various issues of invention that students in secondary school (grades 7-12) may encounter.  

When you're thinking about invention, or what some might call pre-writing, here are some questions for you to consider:

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then this information on writing invention is for you! 


Think of the invention process as a way to create ideas. It’s the “stuff” that happens before you produce the writing that is read by others and/or graded by your teacher.

Every person goes about invention differently. The key is to find what works best for you. Try out the ideas in this section. Use them, blend them, and figure out what you like best.

These web pages are designed to give you the tools to begin the invention process. For additional information, see Introduction to Prewriting (Invention) handout on the Purdue OWL. 

Beginning The Invention Process: General Guidelines and Ideas

Plan to spend time inventing ideas. Writing is not about getting information and ideas down as quickly as you can. Taking time to come up with ideas is the best way to make sure your writing will be unique and interesting, as well as being enjoyable to write. 

Here are some ways to get the ideas flowing for any writing project you might do:

Examples of Invention Strategies

To see examples of these invention strategies, click here. 

Works Consulted

Applegate, Carey. Personal interview. 30 Nov. 2013.

Goldberg, Natalie. Writing Down the Bones. Boston: Shambhala Publications, Inc., 1986. Print.

Johnson-Sheehan, Richard and Charles Paine. Writing Today. Boston: Pearson       Education, Inc., 2013. Print.

National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, Council of Chief State School Officers. Common Core State Standards Initiative. National Governors       Association Center for Best Practices, Council of Chief State School Officers,        Washington D.C., 2010. Web. 18 Aug. 2013.

Ramet, Adèle. Creative Writing. Oxford: How To Books Ltd., 2004. Print.

Spurgin, Timothy. The Art of Reading Course Guidebook. Chantilly: The Teaching Company, 2009. Print. 



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