Descriptive Writing Questions
IGCSE Descriptive Writing...
Descriptive Writing Questions I. From Past Papers: 1. Write a description of a busy market or a busy shop. 2. Describe the most untidy place you know. 3. A friend comes to stay with you. Describe places you would like her/him to see and people you would want her/him to meet. 4. Describe a time when you were frightened by the place you were in. 5. A song or piece of music comes on the radio. Immediately the tune reminds you of a particularly happy or sad occasion. Describe in detail the scene you remember (real or imaginary) and your feelings at that time. 6. Describe a person (real or imaginary) who immediately appears to be either sinister or kind and trustworthy. Pay particular attention to her/his physical features and mannerisms. 7. ‘The Celebration.’ Describe the sights and sounds of a celebration in detail, and how it affects you. 8. Describe in detail some people you encounter in a library or a museum or a place of worship. 9. ‘The happy couple.’ Paying particular attention to the sights and sounds, describe the scene as two people enjoy a special meal in a restaurant. 10.Describe a place of refuge or a safe retreat. 11.For many years you have heard exciting and humorous tales about an elderly aunt/uncle in your family. Someone gives you a diary that once belonged to this relative, who is now dead. Write two diary entries, each describing a memorable moment in this person’s life. 12.Describe the discovery of your own secret hideaway. It could be an overgrown garden or a deserted shack. Concentrate on the detail and atmosphere of the place. 13.‘By the Waterside’. Describe some of the people and activities that take place there. 14.‘Self-portrait’. Describe yourself. In your description you should try to capture what makes you unique. 15.Describe a time and place, real or imaginary, when you felt trapped. Concentrate on your surroundings and your feelings at the time. 16.You come across a group of people eating and speaking together around a table. Describe how they reveal their personalities, relationships and emotions. 17.‘The Performer’. Describe a performer or entertainer who amazed you or held your interest. 18.‘Time capsule discovered in local field.’ Describe the contents of this sealed box of secrets from the past. 19.Describe a time and place (real or imaginary) when you felt so embarrassed that it still makes you uncomfortable to this day. Describe how you felt and how other people reacted. 20.You are walking home alone when you notice signs of a storm gathering around you. Describe what happens and how you feel as you make your way to shelter. 21.Describe three moments in a race; the start, the middle and the finish.
22.Describe the time when you mastered a skill such as unicycling, skateboarding, skiing, cooking or even plate spinning. Describe what you were trying to do, and your thoughts and feelings at the final moment of success. 23.Describe a fire from the first signs of smoke to the moment when it is out of control. 24.Describe nightfall as you reach camp in the middle of the jungle. 25.You arrive on an island. Write a description of your first impressions of the place and its people. 26.Describe what you see and hear from a hiding place 27.Describe the scene and atmosphere when you visit a theme park or fairground. 28.Describe your surroundings before and after a sudden change in the weather. 29.Describe a restful place. 30.Describe an alien’s first impression of a town centre known to you. 31.You are in a crowd of people waiting to see a total eclipse of the sun. Describe what you witness from the moment the moon starts to move across the sun to the point when it is light again. Include your thoughts and feelings throughout and the reactions of the crowd. 32.Describe the character of someone who has had an effect on your life. 33.Describe children playing with a grandparent. 34.Describe a time when you felt homesick. Where were you at the time, and what were your thoughts and feelings? 35.From your imagination, describe a warrior or a hero at the moment of victory. 36.Describe the last moments before you leave a place forever. Describe a noisy group of people passing by, and your thoughts and feelings about them at the time. 37.Describe a place that is very old and has a powerful atmosphere. 38.Describe a building, and some of the people who enter and leave it, during the short period while you are watching the entrance. 39.‘It was all over in a moment.’ Describe what happened at that time, what you saw and heard, and your feelings. 40. Describe someone’s home where you have always been welcome, and the people who live there. 41.You witness, 50 years in the future, the opening of a time capsule containing objects buried today. Explain your thoughts and feelings as the capsule is opened, and describe some of the items. 42.Describe a small group of people relaxing, and then the moment that destroys the atmosphere of calm. 43.Describe a party in full swing, and then what the place is like when all the visitors have gone home. You are waiting outside a room where you are to undergo an important interview. Describe your surroundings and your feelings as you wait. 44.Describe the scene at a station or airport where arriving passengers are met by friends and relatives. 45. Describe an occasion when you received disappointing news. Include the thoughts and feelings of those involved
46.You are being interviewed. Describe the people conducting the interview, and your thoughts and feelings as it progresses. 47. Imagine you have moved house. Describe your new home and your thoughts and feelings as you enter it for the first time 48.Describe a town or city centre in the early hours of the morning. 49.Imagine you return home after a long period away. Describe your surroundings and your thoughts and feelings as you return. 50.Describe the atmosphere and your thoughts and feelings when you and your team win an important competition. 51. Imagine you enter a crowded train or bus for a short journey. Describe your surroundings and your fellow-travellers during the journey 52.Describe the end of a tiring climb with a companion, and your thoughts and feelings as you get to the top. 53.‘Everywhere they are waiting. In silence. In boredom. Staring into space.’ Using the ideas in these lines of poetry as your starting point, develop your own description of the scene. 54. Write a description of a busy scene outside a stadium before or after a big event 55. Describe what you think it would be like to spend some time on the moon. 1 Describe a time when you felt special. 56. Imagine a film of your life so far. Describe two scenes: the images you would see of yourself and the images of those around you. 57.Young people often have a close relationship with an elderly person. Describe the characteristics of a grandparent (real or imaginary) or any other elderly person whose company you enjoy. 58.It is your birthday. Your friends are playing a trick and have blindfolded you. Describe what your senses of touch, taste, smell and hearing tell you about the place they are now leading you into. 59. ‘The Reunion.’ Describe a moment when two people meet each other after a long time apart. 60. ‘My favourite time of day.’ Describe what you see and/or hear and/or feel that makes you enjoy this time the most. 61. Children often keep a box of special things. Describe the contents of such a ‘treasure box’. 62.You walk into a room and there is an atmosphere of anger and embarrassment. Describe the scene, paying particular attention to the ways in which the atmosphere is made obvious to you. 63.Describe a time when you were waiting for something unpleasant or fearful to happen. Describe the place where you were at the time and your feelings as you waited…and waited. 64.The sounds of laughter and loud voices attract your attention to a room in your house. The door is closed. Describe what you can hear, as well as what you can see, as you gently open the door. 65. Describe the sights and sounds of an enchanted journey. 66.Describe a moment when you were involved in a special event. You should describe the atmosphere and emotions of the time. 67. Describe the features of the landscape or town which would form the setting for your ideal interactive computer game. 68.A ‘Reality’ TV show is looking for families to take part in a new series called ‘Meet My Family’ and you want to take part. Only four members of your
family can be chosen. Describe these family members to the TV production team, making each person sound interesting to the viewers. 69.Imagine that you have shrunk to only a few centimetres high. Describe what you see, hear and feel as you attempt to cross a room. 70.Describe the minutes before and after a person receives some very important news. In your description, you should pay particular attention to the emotions involved and how they are conveyed to you. 71.You come across a shop in a side street which you have never noticed before. You enter, and are amazed at what you see. Describe the interior of the shop and the things on sale there. 72.Describe what you see from the window during a journey by road or rail. 73.Write a descriptive account entitled ‘The Flower Seller’. 74.You have to get to an important event or meeting, but the vehicle you are in is held up in a traffic jam. Describe what is going on around you and your feelings during the delay. 75.Describe the surroundings and your emotions at a time when you felt very alone 76.Imagine that you are up in a hot air balloon. Describe what you see below and how the experience makes you feel. 77. Describe a scene from your childhood. Describe the surroundings and your feelings at that time. 78.A travelling circus or show comes to your area. Describe one or two of the acts and include the reactions of the spectators. 79. Describe the most disappointing gift you have received and your reactions at the time. 80.You are in a place which you feel may be haunted. Describe the place, and your feelings and reactions. Describe a group of people at work. 81.‘Suddenly everything stopped moving and there was complete silence.’ Describe what was before your eyes and the sensations that you experienced. 82. A major cycling race is coming through your town centre. Imagine you are at the front of the crowd waiting for the cyclists to appear. Describe the sense of expectation and the arrival of the competitors. 83.You are accidentally locked in your school after everyone has left. Describe the atmosphere and how this makes you feel. 84.Describe the best meal that you ever had with a group of people, including details of the place and the atmosphere. 85. You arrive at an airport or railway station to discover that there is a long delay. Describe what you see and hear, and your thoughts and feelings while you are waiting. 86. Imagine that after some years you revisit a place you used to know well, only to find that everything has changed. Write a description of the place now and how the changes make you feel. 87.Describe the atmosphere of a quiet street or neighbourhood which is then suddenly disturbed 88.. Describe a scene in which a dream came true. Capture the surroundings and atmosphere, as well as your thoughts and feelings about the moment. 89.Your community is celebrating a historic event in the open air. Describe what is happening around you.
90.You come across an abandoned building you never knew existed. Describe its exterior and surroundings before giving details of how you enter. Describe the atmosphere inside and everything your senses experience as you explore the building. 91.Describe a place called ‘Paradise on Earth’. 92.You come across a puppet show being performed to a crowd of children in the town square. Describe what you see and hear, and the atmosphere around you. 93.Describe a shopping trip through a bazaar, spice market or souk in which you stop, at least twice, to consider buying an item. Describe how this experience excites your senses throughout. 94.You have struggled for some time to acquire a skill. Describe what you are doing at the moment of success, and your thoughts and feelings at this time. 95.Imagine that you are watching a building being destroyed. Describe what you see and hear, and your thoughts and feelings about what used to happen in this place. 96.Describe a classroom of students with no teacher present. End your description as the classroom door suddenly opens. 97.You climb a tree and cannot be seen. Describe what you see and hear happening below. 98. You witness an argument in the street between two people. Describe what you see and hear and how you and other people react. 99.Describe your feelings and reactions when you realise you have lost a very important item. 100. You open the door to a room that you are not supposed to enter. Describe the atmosphere and the setting. 101. Write a descriptive piece called My Birthday Party. In your writing create a sense of setting and atmosphere.