Give your child the gift of freedom to write in 2017:
Approaching the new year, it is always a great time to reflect on accomplishments and goals. Regardless of whether you have a child who adores reading and writing or whether you have a child who shies away from both subjects, this is the perfect time to set the tone for moving forward. One of the most practical methods to employ when trying to budget in more reading and writing time, is to gift your child a journal. When students have their own writing space that is just for them, they will be more inclined to sit down and create. For the extremely hesitant writer (since this would be a journal for home and not school), you can give them the option of sharing when they are ready to. Otherwise, weekly check ins and setting goals for what to include in the journal each week would be a reasonable approach.
Allow the student to determine how they want to use the journal:
Do they want to free write about their day, or pick specific prompts to write about? Kids that like to write stories often want to use the journal to create adventures. Others often prefer to write poetry or song lyrics. Some might want to split the journal in half and use part of the journal for writing and part of the journal for thoughts on what they are reading. This is a perfectly marvelous idea. Help them set a goal for how many books they want to read in 2017 or select a reading challenge that is age appropriate. For each book they read, have them write a review on it or select an element of the story that piqued their interest. This will combine literary analysis, grammar, and organizational skills without them having to think too much about it!
How to get started:
With writing, they might need help at first. Either work together to come up with a variety of writing prompts or provide some for your children. Let them know that they are free to write about whatever they choose, but the list of prompts is there for them to utilize if they get writer’s block. It is important that they are writing something at least twice a week. Encourage them to share their writings with you or a tutor and gradually build up to peer editing and grammatical lessons where and when it is necessary. This journal is also an excellent tool to assess where your child is at and what areas they might be struggling with. It can be used as a tool in tutoring sessions, but it’s also important to have your child view it as something that is entirely of their own creation.
For additional help, check out our tutoring services page. Our tutors can help ensure your child gets the extra boost they need for both reading and writing.
For those who are looking for some writing prompts to get kids started, here are just a few:
- Write about your favorite/most special holiday moment.
- Write about how you would spend your time on a snow day.
- What are your hopes and dreams for 2017? Why?
- Write about your favorite book or movie.
- If you could pick one thing to do in the new year that you haven’t done before what would it be? Why?
From all of us here at Avery Learning Lab we wish you a very Happy New Year!