This was one of the best mini lessons we’ve had on writing. The kids still talk about how much they enjoyed sharing their memories and writing about them. They’ve asked me when we can do this again. I call that a successful day!
If you’ve missed the previous posts in this series, I would suggest you go back and start with them, though honestly, you can do any of these lessons in any order. They are just topic suggestions.
You’ve set up a good writing space, have your supplies – pencils, journals, resource materials. Now what?!! This is the second in a series of 5 posts with lesson ideas to help young writers get started on their writing journey. Be sure to read the introduction to this series in How Do I Help the Kids to Start Writing?! Day 1. (We have moved to homeschoolden.com)
Here are some of our first mini-lesson topics. I used mentor texts and picked them apart to help the kids see some of the elements that make for good writing.
In this series I’ll go into more detail on each one:
You can use these lessons in any order.
Writing Workshop, Day Five: Exploring Memories; Gathering story ideas from your own life.
Read Aloud with the Kids:
We started this day reading Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge. (This is an affiliate link.) It was about a young boy who befriends an old lady. She has begun to lose her memory. The little boy brings her all kinds of treasures he has gathered to help her find her memory. As she goes through the basket and pulls out the items one-by-one she is reminded of incidents from her own childhood.
I told the kids to go gather 3-5 things that were special to them and had good memories. The kids ran off really excited! DD said, “Oooh this is just like show-and-tell!” I too went off find a few things to share with the kids.
Just like the story, we all had a lot of memories to share! I think the best moment for me was when the kids wanted me to put them in the sling that I had carried them around in when they were babies and toddlers. Even LD (age 9 at the time) wanted a turn! I was surprised to find just how easy it was to hold my 65 pound boy on my hip!
After talking and sharing (for quite a long time I might add!), we all went off to write. I loved LD’s description of his two blue puppies, Thunder and Lightning. “What I like about them is not that I had them in Australia, but all the memories I have because they came with me on so many trips… Nashville, Williamsburg, fossil hunting, California.”
As I said above, the kids were very inspired by this book and mini-lesson! DD has begged me to do this again.
You can download and printout a copy of this mini lesson by printing on the link below.
Do you want to learn more about starting your own Homeschool Writing Workshop? Here are some related posts:
Mini-Lessons to Use in a Writing Workshop (in any order):