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Slache

Encouraging A Young Writer

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I have a second grade boy that absolutely loves to write and has been writing short stories for over a year. When my husband and I were discussing NaNoWriMo he overheard me say that I wanted to drop all language arts curriculum and have him write for a month and he thought that was just the neatest thing since sliced bread so we did it. He wrote between 40 and 200 words per day about these dinosaurs studying biology who adopted an orphaned boy. I had no intention of doing it now and I know that's not how NaNoWriMo works but he was so excited about the idea I figured why not.

Currently we do IEW Monday through Wednesday, spelling on Thursday and a freewrite on Friday. We take a week off every so often to do Brave Writer projects and if we have a short week we skip IEW for a few Brave Writer games. I read out loud a ton and he has an hour of audio books in the evening. He's also learning how to type so he won't be limited to his handwriting ability.

So, my question is, what do I do with this kid? I don't want to say "Here is more school work for you, this is how we're fitting it into our already busy schedule," but if I just hand over resources he won't utilize them. He has not written in the journal I bought him.

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5 hours ago, Slache said:

I have a second grade boy that absolutely loves to write and has been writing short stories for over a year. When my husband and I were discussing NaNoWriMo he overheard me say that I wanted to drop all language arts curriculum and have him write for a month and he thought that was just the neatest thing since sliced bread so we did it. He wrote between 40 and 200 words per day about these dinosaurs studying biology who adopted an orphaned boy. I had no intention of doing it now and I know that's not how NaNoWriMo works but he was so excited about the idea I figured why not.

Currently we do IEW Monday through Wednesday, spelling on Thursday and a freewrite on Friday. We take a week off every so often to do Brave Writer projects and if we have a short week we skip IEW for a few Brave Writer games. I read out loud a ton and he has an hour of audio books in the evening. He's also learning how to type so he won't be limited to his handwriting ability.

So, my question is, what do I do with this kid? I don't want to say "Here is more school work for you, this is how we're fitting it into our already busy schedule," but if I just hand over resources he won't utilize them. He has not written in the journal I bought him.

Depending on the child and their personality, I might consider 1 of 2 approaches.  Just letting him right b/c he is little and that is all he needs to do. Or, if he likes sharing his stories and is open to talking about their development, I try to create a natural conversational environment where just through talking about ideas and words help him to see how he might make different word choices or add details, etc.  I would not take the 2nd approach with a child who would take that as a criticism, though.  Some kids love to think like that and banter back and forth and accept the challenge and run with it.  Others would put their pencil down.  You need to know your child.  He is in 2nd grade and doing absolutely nothing else but letting him write for pure pleasure is 100% acceptable.

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Writing is a subject I struggle to teach. I think what you guys have going now sounds really great. If I had a natural writer like that I would probably be looking into doing author spotlights each month and delving into what authors have said about their particular writing process. Did they have to research new information for their story? Do they have a favorite spot they like to write and think? How many times did they have to submit their first manuscript? Do they find writing easy or hard?

I'm reading a book right now (for personal pleasure) with essays on writing by science fiction authors. Its illuminating how they each think so differently about the process, criticisms of their work, what good writing even is. Learning stuff like that might be interesting for a kid who seems to be an eager storyteller.

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I did that thing where I post and then figure out what to do on my own. I've decided to keep doing what we're doing and do the 3rd grade workbook for NaNoWriMo next year. I think this will be the structure he needs with the craziness he wants.

3 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

Depending on the child and their personality, I might consider 1 of 2 approaches.  Just letting him right b/c he is little and that is all he needs to do. Or, if he likes sharing his stories and is open to talking about their development, I try to create a natural conversational environment where just through talking about ideas and words help him to see how he might make different word choices or add details, etc.  I would not take the 2nd approach with a child who would take that as a criticism, though.  Some kids love to think like that and banter back and forth and accept the challenge and run with it.  Others would put their pencil down.  You need to know your child.  He is in 2nd grade and doing absolutely nothing else but letting him write for pure pleasure is 100% acceptable.

We do talk about his stories. I can see what to add next from BW or IEW from his reading and our talks.

37 minutes ago, Sarah0000 said:

Writing is a subject I struggle to teach. I think what you guys have going now sounds really great. If I had a natural writer like that I would probably be looking into doing author spotlights each month and delving into what authors have said about their particular writing process. Did they have to research new information for their story? Do they have a favorite spot they like to write and think? How many times did they have to submit their first manuscript? Do they find writing easy or hard?

I'm reading a book right now (for personal pleasure) with essays on writing by science fiction authors. Its illuminating how they each think so differently about the process, criticisms of their work, what good writing even is. Learning stuff like that might be interesting for a kid who seems to be an eager storyteller.

These are good ideas and will go in my notes. Thank you.

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