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Since I originally published this post, I’ve also been adding more prompts, along with other ways teachers have been trying to make their assignments “AI resistant.” 


I asked various AI tools this question:

What are your suggestions for writing projects students can do where they can’t be easily helped by AI?

I would characterize Many, if not most, of their suggestions as not very helpful.  But some were decent, though none “that I would write home about.”

Here are the best ones (there is some degree of duplication):

Personal experiences: Write about a unique personal experience or a significant moment in your life. This prompt requires students to draw from their own memories and emotions, which AI cannot access. Example: Describe a time when you faced a difficult decision and explain how you ultimately made your choice.

Unusual perspectives: Write a story from the perspective of an inanimate object, an animal, or even an abstract concept. This prompt challenges students to think from a unique point of view that AI might not be well-versed in. Example: Narrate a day in the life of a streetlight, describing its observations and interactions with the world around it

Introspection and self-analysis: Write an essay reflecting on your own beliefs, values, or personality traits. This prompt requires students to engage in self-reflection, which is an area where AI would struggle to provide assistance. Example: Analyze how your upbringing and personal experiences have shaped your understanding of success and what it means to be successful.

Personal narrative: Write about a significant moment in your life that has shaped who you are today. Focus on describing your thoughts and feelings in detail, and try to convey the emotions you experienced at the time. This type of writing is highly personal and individual, and may be difficult for AI to replicate.

Reflective writing: Write about a significant experience or period of time in your life that has led to personal growth or learning. Focus on reflecting on your own thoughts and actions, and identifying the factors that have contributed to your growth. This type of writing requires introspection and self-reflection, which may be difficult for AI to replicate.

Autobiographical writing: Write about your own life story, focusing on the values, experiences, and people that have shaped who you are today. This type of writing requires authenticity and introspection, which may be difficult for AI to replicate.

Memoir writing: Write a memoir about a specific period of your life, such as your childhood, teenage years, or early adulthood. This type of writing requires a deep understanding of your own experiences and emotions, and may be difficult for AI to replicate.

Interview-based writing: Conduct interviews with people who have interesting stories or perspectives, and write a piece that explores their experiences and insights. This type of writing requires strong interviewing skills, as well as the ability to craft a compelling narrative from the interviewee’s responses.

Nature writing: Write about your experiences in nature, focusing on the ways in which the natural world can inspire awe, wonder, and reflection. This type of writing requires the ability to capture the beauty and complexity of the natural world through language.

Write a letter to your future self: Students can write a letter to their future self, reflecting on their current experiences, goals, and aspirations. This type of writing requires introspection and reflection, which may be difficult for AI to replicate.

Reflect on a significant event in your life: Students can reflect on a significant event in their life, such as a personal achievement, a challenging experience, or a life-changing moment.

Describe a place that is meaningful to you: Students can describe a place that holds special meaning to them, such as a childhood home, a favorite vacation spot, or a place of spiritual significance.

Describe a person who has influenced your life: This writing prompt encourages students to reflect on a person who has had a significant impact on their life, such as a family member, teacher, or mentor.

Write a personal essay about a difficult decision you had to make: This writing prompt challenges students to reflect on a difficult decision they had to make and write a personal essay about their experience.



Here are a few more:

Classroom-specific topics: Choose topics that are specific to the course material or discussions that have taken place in class. This ensures that the students’ responses are more likely to be original and less reliant on AI-generated responses. Example: In the context of our class discussions on environmental conservation, write an argumentative essay supporting or opposing a specific policy discussed in class.

Current events: Choose a recent news event and ask students to provide their own analysis or opinion based on the information available. This will require students to research, synthesize, and form their own thoughts on the topic, which is less suitable for AI-generated responses. Example: Research a recent political event and write an explanatory essay on its causes and implications for the future.

From reader Joy Kirr:

Our last bit of writing before school got out was a “deleted scene” from THE OUTSIDERS. I’d add “deleted scenes” to the list

Also, see Want to Keep Kids From Using ChatGPT to Cheat? Test Them in More Meaningful Ways from Ed Week.

Magic School has a feature to help teachers develop “AI-Resistant” assignments.

10 AI-Resistant Practices for the Classroom is from AJ Juliani.

Latest AI Announcements Mean Another Big Adjustment for Educators is from Ed Surge.

I have heard different versions of the idea in this first tweet. I can see how it would work to identify inappropriate us of AI, but it also makes me uncomfortable. What do you think? I feel better about the Draftback strategy in the following tweet.