With the lazy days of summer almost upon us, it’s time (at least at our house) to think of ways to keep up those writing skills and maybe even foster a little LOVE for writing! Here, then, are TEN ideas inspired by the interests of my kids. Use the ideas as presented, or adapt them to the interests of your kiddos. Either way, enjoy!
- Keep a summer scrapbook/ journal of all the fun things you have done. Entries can be as short or as long as your child is able/willing. Include drawings, photos and clippings from brochures, postcards etc. No matter how reluctant they are, if they are at all like my daughter, they will enjoy seeing the “book” that emerges over the summer – little bitty writing steps that over time turn into a treasured keepsake!
- Bake a batch of tasty words! Kids love cooking with mom or dad, so why not sweeten the writing process by writing some original recipes! Make this a weekly project and you could have a lovely recipe booklet by the end of summer. (Now wouldn’t that make a precious holiday gift for the special people in your life?)
- Write a letter of appreciation to your favorite author, athlete, or artist. My daughter recently wrote one to a ballerina at the London Royal Ballet. Not only did she have fun writing the letter, it also was a great lesson in addressing an envelope.
- Pretend to be a sportscaster. Head to the little league field or watch a baseball game on tv. Keep a running narrative of what’s happening in the game. Use sporty verbs and phrases like “up to bat” “he rounds second” “and it’s out of the ball park” etc. This was a big hit with my son when he was younger. (He filled page after page covering, not just baseball, but hockey and football too!)
- Have a party! Have your child make and send their own invitations for a summer sprinkler party (or the fun event of your child’s choosing). Writing invitations is a great way to practice organizing and sharing important information – who, what, where, when, etc. Don’t forget to include a catchy description of the party theme!
- Read, read, write! Reading good books provides provides great modeling for good writing. Why not challenge your child to a weekly writing prompt based on the book they are reading. One week they could retell a scene from a different point of view. The next week, the could design their own book jacket for a book. They could also write a mini-sequel, or a skit based on the book.
- Be poets! Poems are short, fun and perfect for summer. Check out this recent post for specific suggestions on how to infuse a little poetry reading and writing into your summer.
- Knock, knock, who’s there? Over the course of the summer, create a lift-the flap joke book. For each spread, write the joke on left hand page. Write the answer on the write hand page. Then cover the answer with a square paper flap. Illustrate the flap to match the joke.
- You’ve got mail! Enlist an eager long-distance relative to be a summer pen pal. Choose snail mail, email or text messages. Then write, write,write!
- Blog it! We haven’t tried this yet, but my daughter is begging me to set up a private blog for her to share fun things on such as crafts, funny stories, travel posts and more. For my comfort level, this will be a private blog with access via password to long-distance family members and friends. What a great way to combine writing with technology!
How will you spread writerly love with your kiddos this summer? I’d LOVE to hear!