7 Ways AI Art Generators Enhance Creative Writing in the Classroom


7 Ways AI Art Generators Enhance Creative Writing

Recently, there have been many conversations among educators about the benefits and concerns regarding students using AI for creative writing assignments. Most of these focus on the AI doing the WRITING for the student. But why not try using AI ART GENERATORS to inspire and enhance creative writing in the classroom? By leveraging these tools, teachers can ignite students’ imaginations, foster creativity, and deepen their understanding of storytelling. Here are seven ways AI art generators can be used to inspire and enhance creative writing in the classroom.

1. Visual Prompts: AI art generators can provide students with visually stimulating prompts to kickstart their creative writing process. By displaying a variety of generated artworks, teachers can encourage students to explore different themes, settings, and characters, sparking their imagination and inspiring unique story ideas. Teachers might collect interesting AI artwork in a slidedeck that could be projected to give students ideas or could print off the images to be used as story prompts. Here are a few examples of some mysterious and unique visuals that could help students go beyond their typical imagination when writing! 

Visual Prompts

2. Character Development: A few months ago I shared a post showing a variety of ways to use prompts to generate characters. Using AI-generated character images, students can develop detailed descriptions and backstories for characters in their stories. By examining the facial expressions, clothing, and other visual cues in the artwork, students can flesh out their characters’ personalities, motivations, and relationships, adding depth and complexity to their narratives. Students can also enhance their description writing skills by refining and editing the prompts that they use to create their characters. Here are some examples how one simple prompt could be expanded to improve character description. 

Character Development

3. Visualizing Settings: AI art generators can help students visualize and explore various settings for their stories. Teachers can display landscapes, cityscapes, and other scenes generated by AI to inspire students to describe settings in vivid detail, incorporating sensory imagery to bring their stories to life. Students could also copy the setting descriptions from their story into an AI art generator to create a visual, and then add details into the prompt improve their writing.  

4. Genre and Mood Exploration: With AI art generators, teachers can introduce students to a wide range of artistic styles, genres, and moods. Often times these generators include effect settings that can change an image to fantasy, mystery, surrealism, steampunk, abstract, and antique visuals with a click that can shift the time period or location of the story. Students can also experiment with changing the mood by using prompts like dark, misty, beautiful, nostalgic, and psychedelic. 

5. Collaborative Storytelling: AI art generators can facilitate collaborative storytelling activities in the classroom. Teachers can display a series of AI-generated artworks and ask students to work together to create a cohesive story that connects the different images. This collaborative approach encourages students to build on each other’s ideas, fostering teamwork and creativity. Students could also collaborate together to create one prompt and then work individually to create a story. It would be interesting to see the differences in the stories the students create using the same prompt.

Collaborative Storytelling

6. Poetry Writing: AI artwork could help students engage in reflective writing activities like poetry to explore their thoughts, feelings, and interpretations. It always is fascinating to see how the AI will visualize abstract ideas. The image could be the inspiration for the poetry or could be a visual created afterwards that reflects the words of the poem. Prompts of “double exposure” often are quite effective to reflect thoughts and feelings in poetry. Another fun idea would be to write Haiku, then put the words into an art generator to see what kind of visual is produced!

Poetry Writing: a boy double exposed with a video game, a woman with roses in the hair and text "beauty for ashes"

7. Book Creation: It is interesting to see that people are now publishing illustrated children’s books by using AI to generate both the text and the pictures. Although there are valid questions about the ethics and quality of such books showing up for purchase, I do think that AI offers teachers, particularly elementary teachers, a great way to create stories or books that are customized for the interest and reading levels of their students. 

Most AI text tools can be prompted to generate text appropriate for a specific reading level. I especially like Diffit because it is geared specifically to help teachers generate materials on a variety of grade levels. With most AI tools, you are likely need to generate the text and the images separately using different tools. However, check out this video showing an example of using Chat GPT Plus with DALL-E-3 to create both the story and images:


I love how Apple Distinguished Educator Michael Clear used AI to write and illustrate a book for his daughter which he published to the Apple Book Store. He explains more about his process here: https://education.apple.com/resource/250011957

ImageFX AR Art Generator: For this post, I created many of the images using Image FX from Google’s AI Test Kitchen. This was a new AI Art Generator for me and I liked the way you could change the prompt using the pull down tools. It currently is free using Google login (no information on the number of images you can generator or age level terms of use). Here is a good article about how to set up and use Image FX: https://www.zdnet.com/article/how-to-use-imagefx-googles-new-ai-image-generator/

example of interface for ImageFX

Conclusion: Incorporating AI art generators into the classroom can enrich the creative writing process by providing students with new sources of inspiration that can let them explore their imaginations, and become more confident and expressive writers. Note: Parts of this post were written with the help of Chat GPT. (Can you tell which parts?)

Call to Action: Have you used AI Art as a part of creative writing in your classroom? Please share your experiences in the comments. Also, if this post helped you to think of an application for AI Art in your lessons, I’d love to hear about it!

One Best Thing:

This post is a part of my One Best Thing Project "AI Art for Inspiration, Creativity, and Learning." I am collecting my AI Art project ideas and resources at this website:


All Replies

Posted on February 10, 2024

Great ideas!

Posted on February 10, 2024

As always, pretty amazing examples Karen! I appreciate the way you explain how these can be used in the classroom and I love your video example!

Posted on February 11, 2024


You are brilliant! I am always so grateful for everything that you share. It seems like your ideas have a way of making it into my classroom and making my students experience even better. Thank you for sharing!

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