Summer is the time for vacations. It’s a chance to get outside and enjoy nature with your family. Whether you like to camp in a tent, have your own RV, prefer hotels, or are just going on a day trip, vacations are a terrific opportunity to get your kids writing for fun!
When I was homeschooling my children, we were in school year around. I must confess that we took vacations often throughout the year, and by conducting lessons during the entire year, we were able to take off whenever we wanted without falling behind.
Sitting in the sand watching waves rippling across a lake is a terrific place for journaling. I never hand my kids paper and pencil and ask them to start writing without a bit of prep. A blank page can be intimidating. And I always write with them. It’s important for them to realize that writing is a lifelong gift.
We begin by writing the five senses across the top of our page. Then we discuss what they see first. This is usually the easiest, and there will be easy answers.
- each other
- clouds in the sky
There are no wrong answers. Everyone sees things differently, and journals are meant to be safe places to share. Always remember that the point is the writing, not what is written. Each of your kids may have different lists, but it’s okay for them to share too.
We continue with lists of what we see, hear and feel. I always add taste, then give examples of how anger or bitterness or disappointment can sometimes be tasted.
Give examples, especially when the concept is a bit abstract. “The sour taste of disappointment made her scowl deepen.” It’s fun to see how their writing develops and their ideas expand.
After they are finished making lists, they can either share or begin writing. Sometimes they are ready to take off without the lists and that’s alright as well. Keep the goal in mind, which is to improve their writing. Now is not the time to worry about staying on a chosen topic.
If they want to write about what they had for dinner the night before instead, that’s fine. Just give them a minimum goal. A half a page, or two sentences, or five minutes. Whatever your goal is, make it clear. And remind them often.
Give them the opportunity to share what they wrote if they want. Write while they are writing, and share when you ask them to share. They will improve by hearing you read.
I hope this helps you with summer journaling. It’s the journey, not the destination, where we have adventures and enjoy life.
Please feel free to leave any comments or suggestions below, and visit again for more helpful hints.