Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Attention Young Scribes: The Summer Journal

This week, since we celebrated a holiday and since the Queen was on a mini-get-a-way vacation, she has decided to not post a new book, but rather discuss with you a very important activity she thinks young princes and princesses and dragons and trolls and even the toads should engage in. Read on, dear subjects about starting your own Summer Journal Fun Book.

The Summer Journal:
This can be a simple spiral notebook, or a homemade journal they’ve created themselves. The homemade journal is more personal, but kids can personalize notebooks and bound journals as well. 

Here's some samples of ones I use for taking story notes, writing out short stories or ideas, and for art. The top one is my theory on how Puppets "really" work. It's quiet magical. Maybe I'll share the ancient secret some day. Maybe.

What Goes Into The Summer Journal?
Every experience, token, and keepsake of the places you go and the things you do during the summer months. Even if you had a watermelon eating party, glue some seeds into the book. Then tell about the party. 

Did you take a trip? Perfect. Lots to write about there. But don’t stick with the mundane “We flew to Greece then took an ocean liner to Rome.” 

Instead, encourage young scribes to write about the scariest or most unusual statue or building they saw. What was the most interesting thing did they learn in one day of touring the sights. 
What did they eat that was totally delish? Or totally gag-a-maggot? 

Look for the unusual and write about it. Parent’s, you can do this too! You should. Really. 
Besides, it's fun once you get into it. Really. 

Maybe you stayed home and had a very boring summer! I don’t believe it! 
Something, sometime, somehow, someway happened that can be written about. Did little brother flush is Spiderman undies down the toilet? (It’s happened at the Castle before; let me tell you- what an ordeal!)

Did you have a slumber party at your house? What games did your friends play? What kinds of dares did they talk you into? So much to write about, so little time. Oh my!

Swimming? Tell about it. 
Visiting relatives? Many a books have been written about such experiences. 

The possibilities are endless.

How To Make it FUN!

Got colored writing tools? Glue? Scotch Tape? Then you are set to make your Summer Fun Journal loads of fun, fun, fun. 

  • Talk about what you learned about Greek statues from the statues’ point of view. You can draw the statue, or  take a picture from a brochure or one you took. Cut it out and let it narrate the story of your adventures. 
  •  Draw the yummy or gross food you had to eat. Draw your face when you ate it. Write dialogue bubbles like in comic strips of what you were thinking.
  •  Write your story out in different colored ink, crayons, pencils or markers.
  •  Add cut-outs to a page and draw or color a scene around the cut out. It could be the hotel you stayed at. A place you visited. Or pictures of people you were with. Write your story around the cut-outs, in spirals, or other fun shapes.

For Young Beginning Writers:
The key is helping them to recognize letters and words, then making the connection that letters make up word which make up sentences.

  • Find the letters in their name at the places you go. If visiting Alabama, take the A if your child’s name is Angela, or Abigail.  Mix and match letters you find to spell their name.
  • Let them draw what they saw and then dictate what they thought about it while you write. Your modeling will help them see how important writing is.
  • Encourage them to trace, or copy the words you encounter each day. Let them copy the word, Zoo, and then they can draw or cut out pictures of the animals they saw there. You can also write out the names of those animals in dashes or dots and let him/her trace out the word.

Making sure your preschooler recognizes letters give them a big headstart when they enter kindergarten. 

Come back on Friday for some Writing Prompts and Games you can play that will encourage those young scribes and keep them scribbling away! 

Happy Reading... and Writing!
The Queen

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