Think history is a thing of the past? 

Guess again! 

If your kids enjoyed Stranger Things, Little House on the Prairie, or WandaVision, they’ve enjoyed historical fiction!

The pages of the past are ripe for story ideas. This class will help your student mine original sources for story ideas to create their own short work of historical fiction.

Class Overview

Made With You in Mind

Dwell on the past!

Old newspapers, magazines, diaries, recipe books, and photos are bursting with long-lost stories waiting for someone to rediscover them. 

Storytellers have always been enchanted with eras gone by! 

In this class, students will discover how to blend fact and fiction to create fresh, lively, historically accurate stories. 

Activities include:

  • Treasure Hunt: Mining primary source material for story ideas and historical details
  • Character Freewrite: Creating a main character based on a figure from the past
  • Set Building: Bringing that character's world to life with historically accurate detail
  • Drafting, Revision, and Editing: Polish up these treasures into your very own work of historical fiction!

Students will need access to primary source material of some kind. We will provide online sources, but you might take this opportunity to hit up your local library, museum, or historical building for documents. Even old family photos can be a fabulous resource for sparking story ideas!

This is a high school class, but strong middle school fiction writers with special interest in this topic are welcome to join us.

This is the right class for your student if they 

  • Need fresh story ideas
  • Start stories… but never finish them
  • Are fascinated by a time period
  • Want to write fiction but don't know how to begin

It’s the perfect mix of tangible, researchable facts and fiction and fantasy galore! The best of both worlds.

Week by Week

Week One

Students begin with an investigation of primary source material (including old family photos!) as they brainstorm story ideas and research historical details.

Week Two

Attention turns to character development and setting this week. Students explore unique challenges to situating a character in a historically accurate past. 

Week Three

This week, students plan the story arc and then write their short story draft (800-1200 words). Particular focus is on authentic dialogue and narrator point of view.

Week Four

Students take their projects through a guided round of revision (including a focus on fact-checking for historical accuracy) and editing. They emerge with a story worth sharing with family members or a larger audience!

Registration Details

Join Us!

$239.00 per student
Recommended Ages:

12 - 18

Class Size:
25 students
Class Length:
4 weeks
Class Type:
  • High School

There are currently no upcoming sessions scheduled for this class.

Word on the Street

I found that writing down questions and observations for pieces of primary source material really sparked the “coming up with story ideas” part of my brain, and I even briefly considered starting a new short story using at least one of the images from those assignments.

Mia, 15

I'd never really tried writing historical fiction before, but now I think I'd like to keep doing it.

Giammaria, 16

I learned that vocabulary matters a lot in historical fiction. It was challenging not being able to use "ok" and some other words that didn't come till a little later [in history]. On the other hand it was really fun using older words like "dandy."

Edward, 14

[M]y understanding of research and the time and energy it takes to do all of that has changed a lot. I will definitely be putting more research into my future books.

Noa, 11

More Information

Sample class login

Want to see how our classroom works? Test drive a sample class complete with real class readings, assignments, and instructor comments!

Follow these instructions:

  1. Navigate to If you are a current student, you’ll need to log out in the upper right corner before proceeding.
  2. Log in using these credentials:
    Username: [email protected]
    Password: Brave1
  3. Next, you will land on our Family Dashboard. You'll find a Parent icon and a Student icon to represent classes where the parent or the student is the primary participant. Click on Parent to view parent participation classes. To find classes with direct student-instructor interaction, click on Student.
  4. Click on the class name of interest and start reading posts!
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