One of the fascinating parts of homeschooling, for me, is discovering just how uniquely each child learns. Just as any parent will tell you, you can have it all figured out with child #1, only to be thrown completely off guard with the behavior of child #2 or 3. Homeschooling is no different. Kids learn at varied paces, and in completely different ways.
My oldest loves to write and draw. Any time he has a free moment, he will be sketching and writing, often creating “board” games with just a pen, paper and scissors. He has written numerous comic books and “choose your own adventure” stories in the last 4 years that we’ve been homeschooling, but not once have I asked him to sit down and “write”.
Child #3 is a different story. He’s now 7 (almost 8) and I have to beg for even an occasional sentence, even copywork. As I’ve always loved writing, I have hundreds of manuscripts from my elementary years and I don’t understand this lack of interest.
When I attended the Brave Writer convention in Austin last September, I remember Julie Bogart telling us that in order to get our kids to write, we simply need to let them know they have a voice and supply them with the tools or methods they would most naturally gravitate to. This has stuck with me more than any other wisdom she imported that weekend. So this is what I’m doing with the kids, starting next week. I bought 4 of these three-year journals off Amazon. Each page has just one question, with room for a single sentence answer. I showed it to S today, and – although it took a little explaining for him to understand that all I expected was one sentence each day – he was pretty enthused about it! I bought the Q&A a Day for Kids: A Three-Year Journal for S and E (ages 7 and 5), and Q&A a Day for Me: A 3-Year Journal for Teens for B (14) and N (12). I will keep you posted on how this adventure goes but I’m really looking forward to it… And more than a little tempted to buy another for myself!
We got a start yesterday and I love that he begged to keep going!
What are some creative ways you get your reluctant writers to share their voice? Please share in the comments!
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