Post updated June 20, 2023

Here we are getting into the dog days of summer. In fact, learning about the expression “dog days of summer” is one of the July writing prompts. It’s not just about the weather; it’s actually based in astronomy! You can use some of these national days to make learning over the summer fun!

The July Writing Prompts journal develops the teaching tenets of engaging, exploring, explaining, and extending. Plus, it’s a great way to combat the Summer Slide.

Each writing prompt engages students with a question that you can explore with them or send them on a webquest. Then they explain or expound on it in a writing activity. 

Finally, by adding an extension by following up with a related activity or craftivity you’ve got an excellent writing plan for a hot summer day.

Dog sleeping on a beach towel with the title Dog Days of Summer July Writing Prompts

Check out Some of the Writing Prompts for July

On July 1, National Postage Stamp Day, students can learn about the practice of philately. They can learn about stamps and then create one of their own. That sounds like a way to spend an hour or so on a hot afternoon!

On Thurgood Marshall’s Birthday, students can learn who he was, (engage) read an article about him and the Supreme Court, (explore) then write about why he is important, (explain). After that, if you have time, you can guide a deep conversation about the impact he had on the people of the United States, (extend). 

Image of the U. S. Supreme Court and the scales of justice.

July 12 is the birthday of Malala Yousafzai. She’s an important person for students to learn about. Her experience can lead into a discussion of the importance and value of education, and why certain peoples may not want others to be educated.

On Stay Out of the Sun Day, you could begin with a discussion about sun safety, (engage). Next, watch the Minions slip, slap, and slop on sunscreen while they are playing in the sun, and taking a break in the shade, (explore). After that, students can write about the sun safety tips they learned, (explain). Finally, what kid wouldn’t love to apply some sunscreen before heading outside to a shady area to play or eat ice pops? (Extension). 

There are days in July featuring animals: sharks and snakes! There are some days celebrating states such as Alaska and Pennsylvania. National Days always seem to have some about food, such as blueberries and strawberry sundaes. (Perfect for July 4th if you happen to live in the United States.) There are days celebrating many famous people.

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A water background with the words Summer Writing Fun and an image of a July writing journal.
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July is  National Dog Days of Summer Month and National Watermelon Month

In my local area, Farm Fresh to You delivers food and supports the local community. I found this fun video about watermelons on their Youtube channel.  Did you know that pirates used watermelons as canteens? That’s one of the trivia tidbits you’ll find in the video. Click the image to watch it.

July is Watermelon Month
Click the image to watch the video from Farm Fresh to You about watermelon history. Your students might like it too!

A delicious summer treat that’s icy and healthy is a Watermelon Slushy drink. I make mine by cutting watermelon into chunks and freezing them. Then put them in a blender with just a dash of Ocean Spray Cranberry Watermelon juice. I also add some mint from my garden. It’s a real treat when the thermometer hits triple digits!

A dog with red sunglasses on holding a piece of watermelon. A recipe for a watermelon slushy is in a speech bubble.
Click this image to see it and share it on Instagram!

What About Those Dog Days of Summer?

This image of the dog in the hammock links to one of my favorite videos explaining the science and history behind the expression, “Dog days of summer.” This cute dog reminds me of my little girl Dahlila. She won’t get in a hammock, but she loves hanging out by the pool. Just click the image of the dog in a hammock to watch the video from a meteorologist with Storm Shield.

A dog wearing sunglasses sitting in a hammock on the beach.
Click the image to learn more about the saying, “Dog days of summer.”


Make Summer Writing Fun!

Have students create videos about the writing prompts. We need to take every opportunity to engage young learners in an activity that relates to the writing.

One really fun idea is to create a video relating what they learned or want to learn. They can record their ideas on Screencastify, Flipgrid, a phone, or whatever way you like to have them make a video. Then they can share the video with classmates, grandparents, or other family members.

With some creativity you can inject fun and engage, explore, explain, and extend with every one of the July writing prompts. During these long, hot days, the more fun you can make with these prompts, the better.

Whatever you decide to do, as long as you’re providing engaging ways for your children or students to interact with what they read and write, you’ll be giving them the ability to retain what they learned in the past year. Research shows that children who read, visit the library, write letters, and do other literacy related activities don’t suffer as much from summer slide.


Cover of a writing journal for July called Writing Every Day with a Calendar of National Days

P.S. These monthly interactive writing journals are just one part of integrating your curriculum across all the subjects you teach. When you can integrate subjects, and condense the materials, you’ll see benefits in your mindset, your students’ abilities to focus, and your teaching.

Summer Writing Prompts with Pictures

Are you looking for some open-ended narrative writing prompts for summer? These summer-themed picture story prompts are NO PREP. Just print and go, or use it digitally and go! It’s perfect for preventing summer slide by keeping your young ones busy with creative writing. You can have a creative writing jam session and finish it off with a story sharing hour. Don’t forget to include an ice cold slushy beverage! Just click on the image to see a video preview with all the prompts.

Summer writing prompts with an illustrated girl with a surfboard.

There are eight narrative writing topics that start with a picture. The story starter task cards give a situation related to the pictures, so you can combine the writing sheets with the task cards if you want.

Enjoy your summer days!



Have you taken the free video challenge? It’s perfect for summer planning for the upcoming school year.


Plan Your Year in 5 Days or Less

If not, why not try it? When you finish you’ll have your entire year mapped out and linked right to your planbook. I created this system to give myself the breathing space every teacher needs. Check it out! The form to get your workbook and videos is in the link right here.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to stop by the Member’s Vault of freebie goodness while you’re here. If you haven’t signed up, just click the button and I’ll send you the password. 


Members Vault



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