Genre Worksheets

What Are the Genres of Literature?

Ever had a movie suggested by a friend? The next question you ask is, ‘what kind of movie is it? Is it scary? Is it funny? Or is it romantic?’ Genre is a broad term that refers to a kind of art, music, literature revolving around specific content, characters, and style. When there are enough characteristics that align together in a genre, they are said to be of the same genre. The genres in literature have distinct features that help readers to differentiate between the book. Hence, the readers must know the book genre they choose to read because they might have certain expectations attached to the book prior to reading. The following are the five types of genres in literature: Poetry: This primary literary genre is written in stanzas and lines instead of long paragraphs. Some poems follow strict rules, while others follow a free-flowing style. Fiction: It is any work that is written in prose and is not real. This genre is more structured and written in paragraphs with proper punctuation and grammar. Non-fiction: The third broad category of the genre is non-fiction. It is the exact opposite of fiction, i.e., it comes from real-life. Most of the non-fiction works are based on real-world experiences and examples. Drama: The fourth genre is more like a play. It has dialogues, directions, and scene settings. It is usually performed in front of an audience, and it is further categorized as: comedy, tragic, sci-fi, tragic-comedy, etc.

Elements of Genres

Match each genre with the element it is likely to contain.

This Is Probably...

Match each story description to the correct genre.

Primary Characteristics

Match each genre to its primary characteristics.


Fiction is generally divided into four broad categories. Read the description of each category below. Then write the name of each category on the line.


A series of reading questions that are aimed at specific well known fables.


Some great reading sheets that go hand-in-hand with well known legendary tales.

Literary Genres

Match each genre with its characteristics.

What Is Genre?

What are the four main genres of literature? Briefly describe each.

Research It!

List the primary characteristics of each genre. Provide an example of each. If you are not familiar with any works of a genre, use the internet as a reference tool, or visit the library.


Summarize a fantasy story that you have read or seen (in a movie or on TV). Describe how you know the story belongs to the fantasy genre.

Fiction or Nonfiction?

Identify whether each genre is fiction or non-fiction.


Which picture could be on the front cover of a mystery novel?

Satire: Babbitt

Satire is a genre that holds the vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings of individuals or societies up to ridicule. Writers sometimes use satire to try to shame or embarrass people, organizations, governments, or society into improving.

Dystopia: Fahrenheit 451

Dystopias are a sub-genre of science fiction. Dystopia is similar to satire in that both are essentially works of social criticism, but a dystopia doe not typically include the element of humor.

Science Fiction

Which of the following is characteristic of a science fiction story?

Understanding Genre Differences

Write one paragraph that could go into a story of the genre that you chose. Include elements of that genre so that it is clear to the reader what genre you are writing in.

Adventure: Hatchet

Choose an adventure story. Read the book. Write a short persuasive paper that argues why the book belongs in the adventure genre. Use the questions below as a guide.