Welcome back! This week we are on the letter “W”! I can’t believe our series is almost finished. It’s gone by way too quickly.
Homeschooling Tip #1: Writing
One of the subjects that I found very transformational for my kids, was with their writing.
Not with their handwriting, but with their creativity and writing their thoughts and information onto paper.
Family Writing Activity
One of the best types of writing activities we did, was a week-long, family, creative writing project. The way it worked was, I would write an introductory paragraph introducing a main character and a setting. I would also begin to introduce a problem for the main character.
For example, one time I began writing about a bear. He had a name, but I forgot what I named him. Let’s just say… Benji the Bear.
Benji, of course, lived in a big forest that was very dark and thick. He would barge through the brush and briars as he walked along. He didn’t care though, because the only thing that was on his mind, was finding something to eat.
As Benji trudged on, he came upon a hollow, fallen log. The log was so thick around that when it fell, it crushed a great big bush of berries. Benji needed to get to those berries. His tummy rumbled louder and longer than his growl did.
Just as Benji reached down to shove that log off of the berries, a……………
Isn’t this exciting? At this point, I would just leave the story hanging and pass my paper to someone else in the family. They would take their time during the day to think about a storyline and continue the story in their own way.
Once they were finished, they would pass on the paper to someone else. Our goal was for everyone in the family to add to the story everyday for one week.
At the end of the week, whoever had the last chance to write, would end the story for us.
These stories were so fun to do together. I’d encourage you to try it with your kids. It’s amazing the things that happened to Benji!
Individual Creative Writing Prompts
We also enjoyed just doing our own creative writing. Sometimes though, the kids would have a hard time thinking of something to write about.
Fortunately, I found a few creative writing spinners at a yard sale. Each spinner was either a type of character or a setting.
So the characters could have been a king, princess, cat, dragon, whatever. And the setting could have been anywhere; a train, space shuttle, a box, castle, etc.
Once the kids spun a character spinner and a setting spinner, we would each create a story using the items that had been spun. I would set a timer, so that the kids didn’t write all day.
When the timer stopped, we would each read our stories out loud for the rest of us to hear.
If you don’t have spinners to spin, you could always just brainstorm with your kids a bunch of different characters and settings and then write them each out on a little piece of paper, and then draw them from a hat.
Creative Writing Games
Another fun creative writing prompt was to use pictures.
I found a stash of colored 8 x 10 pictures showing different settings, objects and characters at a yard sale.
One time, I pulled a picture of two kids at the table eating their breakfast, and mom was there pouring the milk into one of the bowls.
I asked the kids to write a story about the picture, from the perspective of someone or something that you don’t see in the picture.
When they finished we read our story out loud and the rest of us would guess who or what was telling the story.
I remember that I chose to be a spider up high in my spider web, watching the scene down below. The kids didn’t guess it, but I remember that one of them did a mouse and the other a dog. It was really fun.
If you don’t have pre-made pictures, you could collect pictures from magazines or look at online stock photos to give you some inspiration.
There are plenty of different types of journals to keep. You can read more about them in my Homeschooling Tips – The Letter J post.
For some ideas, journal writing can be diary style, or you could give some other type of purpose for the day’s writing assignment.
For example, you could ask the kids to include a vocabulary word from your vocabulary list, or you could have your kids insert different concepts from their grammar lessons that they are learning. In this way, they’d be putting their learning into practice. Win-win!
For more structured writing skills, SchoolhouseTeachers.com offers courses and classes on a large variety of different writing topics.
I am an affiliate for SchoolhouseTeachers.com. If you make a purchase, you will not pay more, but I’ll get a small commission. Thank you!
The course and class titles are:
- Adventures in Writing
- Benjamin Franklin Writing Method
- Classics-Based Writing
- Creating Dynamic Characters
- Creative Compositions
- Creative Writing
- Daily Writing
- Elementary Writing with Structure
- Essay Writing 101
- Expanding Your Writing Skills
- Exploring Creative Writing
- Fundamental Elements of Literature and Composition
- How to Write a Resume
- Paint with Your Words
- Paragraphs, Poetry, and Prose: Elementary Writing
- The Writing Life: Learn to Write Well
- Weekly Writing Challenge
- Words and What to Do with Them
- Writing: Advertising Copy
- Writing: College Admission Essay
- Writing: Compare and Contrast
- Writing: Mechanics
- Writing on This Day in History
Well, I guess that’s it for now. Make sure to come back next week for homeschooling tips that start with the letter X!
If you missed any of last week’s Letter V posts, just click on the title that you missed.
V is for Vacation: Lego ABC’s from Desiree at Our Homeschool Notebook
Discovering the “V” Rabbits of the World from Annette at At Home Pets
Vaughan Williams and Villa-Lobos: Composer ABC’s from Lori at At Home: Where Life Happens
V is for Virus: A Logic Game from Desiree at Our Homeschool Notebook
Value Added Learning from Chareen at Every Bed of Roses
If you would like to read more Homeschooling Tips from A to Z, just click on the alphabet letter below.