October 28, 2021– I usually write a whole whack of blog posts all at once, but for some reason, today, I had no idea what I wanted to write about. Sometimes we struggle as authors to find inspiration, but we have to keep looking. Finally, I found a photo that inspired me for today’s challenge!
Instructions: Using the photo above, write an 850-word children’s book. Remember to have a beginning, middle, and end as well as rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution. Start where the action is!
My take on this is that the little girl opens the door to the playhouse and is transported to a magical world. Maybe there are toys inside, and they come to life to and help her on an adventure, or perhaps there’s some mission she has to accept to save the other toys from a bully; wherever your imagination takes you, follow it! Have fun with this exercise, and remember to make everything larger than life!
December 29, 2020-Let’s talk about reluctant readers! What are they and what can we do about it? Reluctant readers are defined as any child who does not show an interest in reading. They may actively resist reading, mask their dislike by clowning around or misbehaving when asked to read, become easily frustrated during reading, or need to be coaxed into picking up a book.
We know that literacy matters and that it’s the key to success; that’s why we need to encourage children to enjoy reading at a young age, the sooner they learn to love books, the better! Illiteracy impacts 12 million Canadians, here’s how to ensure that your child does not become a statistic:
Start early-One of the most critical time frames for brain development in children is 6-12 months old. Read with your child. Although they may not understand what you’re saying or the words on the page, you’re setting them up for success! You’re introducing them to sounds, words, visual stimulation, and spending valuable time with them bonding over books.
Start small-If your reluctant reader is a bit older, start small-start by reading the back of the cereal box, street signs, grocery items, and other daily use items. Label the items in your home and make a game of it!
Focus on their interests– Whatever your kid wants to read, let them! Whether it’s short stories, Manga, poetry, comic books, or graphic novels, let them read! Do they love sports? Maybe they love fashion, adventures, or animals! Whatever they want to read about that interests them, encourage it!
Go graphic-Graphic novels are still novels! Yes, they have pictures, but if your child enjoys reading these types of books, allow them. Any reading is better than none.
Read together-Spending time reading together as a family makes magical memories that will last a lifetime! Take turns reading to each other and carve out some time each day to read. Treat it as a ritual, something sacred and special!
Make it fun– Pair interactive activities to encourage reading. Have your kids read the book before seeing the movie and have a discussion afterward of which was better and why. Host a scavenger hunt with themed items from the book e.g. An acorn, bird’s nest, a daisy, a blue car, etc. Set up a reading chart with stickers for each book completed and see how many books can be read by the end of the year for an epic prize (maybe a new book, bookmark, or digital book download).
Reading is power! Books are portable magic that expand our minds and imaginations! You cannot be a good writer if you don’t read-remember that. If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the tools to write, it’s that simple.
Here are some of our favourite options for the reluctant reader in your life:
January 9, 2018- We haven’t done one of these for a long time and we’re way overdue to have some fun; I love photo writing prompts! They certainly help me break out of writing ruts when the ideas just aren’t flowing. The picture prompt below has unlimited opportunities to write about; this photo can break into multiple genres. Your imagination is the only limit! Have fun with this and happy writing. X LLB
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