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Fun Compare & Contrast Writing Prompts & Activities

Compare and Contrast writing is a hard skill to get our little people to master! But like anything else we teach, the more we expose our students to the concept, the more comfortable they will become with it!

In this post, I’m sharing some ideas that will help your students master Compare and Contrast, including writing prompts, activities, and videos.

By starting with small activities as a group and moving into writing, your students are sure to become masters of Comparing and Contrasting by the time they leave your classroom!

a compare and contrast writing prompt asking students to write about a frog and a rabbit | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

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Introduce the Idea of Compare & Contrast

Kick off your discussion of Compare and Contrast with simple, everyday examples. You may ask your students to compare two fruits, like apples and oranges. What are things that are the same (both are fruits, contain seeds, etc.}? What are the differences between the two fruits {color, taste, size, etc.}?

It may be helpful to use a Venn diagram to visually demonstrate this. This will help your 1st or 2nd graders understand the concept more concretely because they can see all the similarities and differences next to each other.

compare and contrast venn diagram printable for elementary teachers | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Keep scrolling so you can grab this FREE Venn diagram printable.

Use the Venn Diagram to Help Students Visualize

After doing a few examples together, pair up or group your students to do this exercise again together. To get the ball rolling, suggest a topic! Below are just a few to get the juices going!

Here are some simple Venn Diagram ideas for learning Compare & Contrast:

  • Dogs vs. Cats
  • City vs. Country
  • Books vs. Movies
  • Lemon vs. Peach
  • Winter vs. Summer
  • Teacher vs. Student

After completing their own Venn diagrams, they can wander around the room to share their discoveries with each other!

Get Up & Move

Want to show similarities and differences in action? Get your students moving around the classroom! Call out commands and have the students group together.

For Similarities:

  • “Find a friend who has the same color shoes as you.”
  • “Find a friend who has the same color hair as you.”

For Differences:

  • “Find a friend who is taller/shorter than you.”
  • “Find a friend who gets to school a different way than you.”

Like the Venn diagram, this is a visual representation that will stick out in your students’ minds! It’s especially helpful for 1st and 2nd graders!

Simple Books

While there are no trade books that explicitly teach the Compare and Contrast concept, there are lots of books that can lead your discussion!

A crowd favorite is the Who Would Win? Series. Any of these books would be a great jumping off point to start the conversation. You may even be able to find these in your school or local library.

who would win books help students learn about compare and contrast concepts | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

As your students become more comfortable with this idea, it’s fun to take a peek at different stories {such as fairy tales} and compare the different versions.

An easy one to start with is Goldilocks and the Three Bears compared to Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas.

goldilocks and the three bears book cover | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch
goldy luck and the three pandas book cover | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Complete a Venn diagram together for each of the story parts – characters, setting, plot, etc. This is a perfect tie-in with reading so it’s win-win hitting the standards!

Compare & Contrast Posters Freebie

A visual reminder to help your students remember these tricky words can be helpful!

visual posters for elementary classrooms that show the difference between comparing and contrasting | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Hang up these posters as you chat about these ideas.

You can grab the FREE posters below! {This freebie also includes the Venn diagram, too!}

Videos about Compare & Contrast

We know that our students need to hear the same thing over and over again…and sometimes not from us! Here are a couple of short videos that simply Compare & Contrast.

Get Writing! with Prompts

Now that your students are well on their way to being masters of Compare and Contrasting, it’s time to prove it!

I’ve created a pack of compare & contrast writing prompts to guide your students through comparing things.

There are 20 prompts included in three different styles so you can pick what works best for your classroom. The idea is a gradual release. So you can start with the most structured prompt and eventually move into the open-ended prompt.

20 compare and contrast writing prompts in an easy printable solution for teachers | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Most Structure

These writing prompts are kind of like a Mad Libs style. I’ve included “blanks” where students can simply write in words that make sense.

This first prompt provides the most structure to give your students their “sea legs” as they begin this type of writing.

a compare and contrast prompt about a donut and a cookie filled out by a 1st grade student | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Medium Structure

This next prompt gives your students more places to add details about the two objects, but with a little less structure than the first one.

a 2nd graders writing assignment comparing and contrasting donuts and cookies | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Least Structure

This set of prompts simply states the topic and provides lines for students to run with!

open format compare and contrast lined paper prompt about a donut and a cookie | Lucky Learning with Molly Lynch

Compare and Contrast Writing Prompts & Activities Recap

All of these Compare and Contrast writing prompts are great to add to your Writing Center or use as a whole class.

You can easily differentiate the assignment based on the needs of your students.

Teaching young students how to compare and contrast with fun activities can help them more fully understand this vital writing concept!

Get printable Compare and Contrast writing prompts here!

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