Slice of Life: Learning the Power of Being a Writer #SOL19 #TWTBlog
I felt sad when my baby brother came home. I thought my mom would cry a lot.
I felt scared when I fell down the stairs.
I was jealous when my dad told me it was my sister’s turn.
I was worried when I walked up the stairs of the bus.
I was happy when I picked up my new puppy.
I was excited when I saw my friends at school.
I was mad when a seagull ate my sandwich.
I was disappointed when I was too short to go on the ride and my friends could go on.
I was curious when I went into the cave.
I was sad when my friend moved away.
Launching Kindergarten writers into the world of personal narrative is one of my favorite things to do. The illustrations might not be grounded on the page, the spelling may be very invented, the story they tell might not match the story they draw, and the grips you see with newly sharpened pencils may make you fear for your life.
There is a much to worry about when we launch writing workshop on the first days of school. It all goes away once you hear their stories. All the “what-ifs” melt away and are replaced by a community of young friends who are learning:
I can do something by myself.
My life matters to someone else.
I have a story to tell.
I can share my story by drawing and writing.
I listen to my partner’s story.
I help my partner.
I ask my partner for help.
I talk about my feelings.
I am a writer and a reader.
Once I hear their stories, once I back up to observe the agency in the air, once I feel the community beginning to develop, I wonder what-if we didn’t start writing workshop on the first day. I think the benefits of starting far to outweigh the risks. If nothing else you will laugh, cry, gasp, sigh, and connect with your students. If you haven’t started writing workshop yet, in the words of Lucy … Off you go! You won’t regret it – I promise!
Thanks to all the Kindergarten teachers who invited me in and threw caution to the wind these past few weeks of school. I learned so much from you and your young writers. Happy Writing!
Thank you, Betsy, Beth, Deb, Kathleen, Kelsey, Lanny, Melanie, and Stacey for this weekly forum from Two Writing Teachers. Check out the writers, readers, and teachers here.