Choose Your Own Adventure Project

Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA) books are ideally suited for an integrated skills project that practices reading – spreaking and writing.  Reading these books does not take as much time as reading a regular novel. This makes CYOA books ideal for short but intensive projects that you can fit into the school year at any time.

“Choose Your Own Adventure” books are a form of interactive fiction where the reader takes on the role of the protagonist and makes choices that determine the outcome of the story. These books typically present the reader with a series of options at various points in the narrative, and depending on the choice made, the reader is directed to a specific page to continue the story. Each choice leads to a different branching path, resulting in multiple possible endings.

Reading: The format of “Choose Your Own Adventure” books allows readers to actively engage with the story, making decisions and experiencing the consequences of those decisions. This interactive aspect can make reading more immersive and entertaining, as readers have a degree of control over the direction of the narrative. 

Speaking: In the CYOA project the students work in pairs and choose one of the books that looks interesting to them. They then read the story  in class together with their partner, and  have  short discussions at each of the branches of the story. In these discussions they clarify their understanding of details and argue for or against one of the options that are presented. They have to  give reasons to convince their partner to  follow their chosen path and will use a lot of the new vocabulary from the stories actively and meaningfully.

Writing: Several follow-up tasks can round off a CYOA project. Below you will find three examples for different reading and writing levels. 

You can find CYOA books at different levels and age-groups.

CYOA: Short and easy stories ( year 2)

For weaker learners (end of year 2) I have used the following very basic books. These versions are very short and contain lots of pictures. The reading and discussing of the options will only take about 30 minutes.  

The Lost Dog

Return to the Haunted House


Monsters of the deep

Your Very Own Robot

The Lake Monster Mystery

For the follow-up writing activity we used task 13 in our reading diaries. 

CYOA: Intermediate level (year 3-4)

For learners in year 3 or 4 the books below are perfectly suitable. Even if they do not understand every word, they will follow the plot easily and dive into the story together with their partner. These books typically have between 30 and 40 different endings. It takes about 2-3 lessons for the students to work their way through the maze and find a satisfying solution.

Find the books for this level here.

These books typically have between 30 and 40 endings. In order not to get lost in the maze of decisions the students kept track of their decisions in these  decision trees.  

Copy the instructions for the decision trees on a A3 sheets — you need a lot of space to keep track of all the decisions.

In a second phase the students wrote their own CYOA books.

Instructions for the CYOA writing project.

I printed these pages in the booklet format and stapled them into A5 books. The students wrote their first drafts by hand. Most groups then typed the second draft and decorated their final books nicely.

Have a look at these finished books written by students of 2c: 


Have a look at the instructions booklet here. You can download it as a pdf.






Another, more basic and shorter writing task for this project would be:

You have just returned from a life-threatening adventure. Luckily you have made it home.

Write a letter to your best friend and tell him/her about your adventure.

Start like this:

Dear …..,

You won’t believe what happened to me last week. I ….

In your letter tell your friend lots of details:

Where did you go? What happened there? How did you feel about these things? Did you take any wrong and dangerous decisions that almost got you killed? …