I'm not sure what the weather people are saying in your area but I am absolutely sure that whatever sort of February you are looking at will benefit from a bit of creativity and a nice cup of hot cocoa!
Remember to send your answers and project photos along with any comments, suggestions, or ideas you would like to see in the future (you will be given credit) to the e-mail address found throughout the pages.
Most of all, ENJOY! ~Brittney
p.s. To download your copy of February's newsletter, just click on the pdf file below.
Hello all of you parents, teachers, and caregivers out there!
Some of you may have already taken a look at the first week of the Kickstarts! Writing Workshop. If you haven't I hope you will check it out! I promise, it's full of fun ways to reduce writing stress and get the words flowing again.
For those of you who might find it a little wordy for your little ones (or bigger ones for that matter), I have some helpful hints that should remove any fears you have about using Kickstarts! to help motivate your young (or not so young) writer to participate.
1. Put the lesson in your own words. I tend to rattle on sometimes in the directions. It works as motivation for some but it can also intimidate shaky readers. When you strip all of the extra words that are meant to make the post feel more like an interactive class than directions for a project, the idea can be stated in some pretty simple terms.
2. If attention spans are short, keep the writing time short. If writing for five minutes is a chore, writing for a half an hour is going to be torture. Work with what your writer has to offer and extend the time a little at a time or as they show more interest.
3. Be a part of the process. You are absolutely allowed to write, too. Make this an activity you do together. You may be surprised at your own response to the writing process.
4. This is not the place for grading. Kickstarts! is meant to help relieve anxiety over the creative writing process. Anyone taking it should not have to worry if the story is "good" or "bad", meets any specific criteria for grammar, spelling, story arc, etc. While those things are all important to a writer, none of them mean a thing if the ideas are trapped behind worry that what is on the paper is not good enough.
5. If your child hasn't mastered the skills necessary to write on their own, do it for them. Your three year old will tell you stories all day long if you let them. Keep them in the habit of being creative.
6. And if some of that sounds like work, just remember, the world is really good at forcing creativity into little, well-labelled boxes these days. I can argue that this is a catastrophic practice for the future of humanity. All of the innovations and accomplishments of the past were brought about by people whose imaginations ran a little wild from time to time.
I hope this was helpful for anyone having trouble making the lessons fit their needs. If you are still having problems, please contact me and I will be happy to help you find a way that works for your writer.
Happy adventuring! ~Brittney
Soooo...how's the writing coming along? Is your notebook gathering pieces and starts? Do you find yourself looking at the world around you a little differently? I hope the answer to both is a big, resounding YES!!!
I also hope that you are finding the writing process both a little easier and a lot more fun! That's what we're working toward, after all!
This week has the extra bonus of providing a great excuse for a field trip! Just remember to wear your comfy shoes and biggest smile if you head out to find some inspiration!
Welcome to week two of Kickstarts! Did you have all sorts of fun with last week's mission to bring your everyday objects to life? Did you greet any by name as you passed by? If so, tell them hello for me, too!
This week is all about travel. Everything surrounding you came from someplace else. In other words, it has a built in story or backstory to tell! It's up to you to share the story of how the things around you came to be where they are!
The adventure awaits your writing hand! Let's get going! ~Brittney
Being a homeschooling parent for 13 years and an independent author/illustrator makes a person learn quite a bit about a lot of things. Now it's time to pass it on!