My Bucket List

One word can make a big difference in our attitude and emotions.

For example, some students don’t like the word “essay” because it seems like work. So, I used the word ‘letter’ instead or ‘essay.’ I asked my students to write a letter to describe their ‘bucket list.’ My students’ results were impressive (considering that they are exhausted from studying for grade 7 tests).

Photo by Longhorndave

Writing Lesson

In this writing lesson, write a five-paragraph letter that talks about things you want to do in your life.

‘My bucket list’ is the subject of the letter. ‘Bucket list’ is a slang phrase for your life goals. It’s the things you want to do before you die. Bucket list comes from the English expression – kick the bucket – which means to die.

The letter about your life dreams should tell a story, with a beginning, middle, and conclusion. Your letter should include:

  • details about what you wan to do
  • good paragraph structure
  • an introduction and a conclusion
  • sentences that read smoothly

Writing Prompts

Here is the writing prompt to start your thinking. “Before I go, I want to …”

In this sentence ‘go’ means die.

Choose one (or more) of these ideas for your letter: “Before I go, I want to …”

  1. visit
  2. thank
  3. meet
  4. eat
  5. tell
  6. give
  7. see
  8. know
  9. make sure

Student Writing

Here are two examples of student writing. They are grade 7 students. English is not their first language. This is what they wrote after one edit. I have not changed their writing.

Dear Grandpa,

It’s me. It’s been almost 2 years since you kicked the bucket. I want to do things you couldn’t before I kick the bucket.

Before I go to meet you, first I want to go to an amusement park with my grandma. You always told me your stories about when you were young. Also you told me about when you hoped to get better and go to an amusement park with grandma. So, before I kick the bucket, I would like to visit an amusement park with my grandma.

Second, I want to go into FNC Academy. FNC is a place where FT Island and Oh Won-bi work. When I go to FNC Academy, I will learn very much and go out to the world. You always wanted me to be a talk show host! I will try to become the legend of talk show hosts.

Third, as you wanted, I will make my sister become a famous violinist. When she becomes a famous violinist, I promise to visit you. I think she can be the next famous violinist in the world.

Fourth, I want to become a scientist. I will make a time machine and go back to the time when you were not sick. I will give you the medicine to make you better. And we will live happily ever after.

Lastly, I hope you come back. I hope you come back and have a nice time with me and do everything we couldn’t do when you were sick. This is the thing I have always wanted. Then let’s meet after I kick the bucket.

Have a nice Christmas,


Dear Santa Claus,

Hi Mr. Santa. It’s me. I am a 14 year old girl who has many dreams. There are some things I would like to do before I kick the bucket.

I would like to visit the DMZ. A school teacher said the DMZ is the cleanest place in the world because no one has been there for 60 years. I heard that there are many explosives but I hope to avoid a landmine if I go there.

I would like to see FT Island in concert. Preferably, a front row center seat. Then I can see them easily. Even thinking about it makes me happy. It would be cool to sit in the front seat and scream.

I would like to go to FNC Academy. FNC Academy is where FT Island, Oh Won-bi and CN Blue work. These are my favorite singers. I will like to go there with J and look around inside. Maybe Han Sung -ho will let J go on a comedy show.

These are the things I want to do before I kick the bucket. I hope you help me do these things. Thank you for reading my letter, Santa Claus. I will wait for your present on X-mas. Bye. ASAP.

From G

2 thoughts on “My Bucket List”

  1. Thanks for the super positive comment, Kristen.
    If you try this writing exercise, let me know how it works.


    the brains behind this website

Leave a Comment

IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)

What is 13 + 13 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.