Posts Tagged With: children’s writing

Playful Writing Book Now Available!

Playful Writing Cover image

Writing for fun and discovery!

Find 150 playful writing explorations for young children. Activities include a creative start and uses writing as a natural extension of self-expression, and playful encounters. Prompts and guiding questions keep children writing for real purposes children care about. Each activity includes Early Writer ideas for those emergent learners, as well as Ready Writer activities for those ready for more advanced and complete writing projects.

The playful writing activities are organized into 15 chapters. That include a combination of informational and fictional writing experiences. Take a look!

Playful Writing Link

Categories: adventure writing, Animals/ Nature, Early Childhood, Fantasy and Fairy Tales, Holidays, Humor Writing, Poetry, Science Writing, Talking Points, Writing Games | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wordy Wind Wands

Here is a quick and simple writing activity perfect for a windy day. Watching words fly in the wind sure beats the old worksheet, doesn’t it? Even better, this activity uses recycled and found materials.

What You Need: Sticks, newspaper, markers, glue, scissors

Play Time!

photo of wind wand

Writing in Motion

  1. Collect sticks about a foot long.
  2. Cut newspaper into half-inch strips.
  3. Use markers to write on the strips.
  4. Glue strips to the top half of the wand.

Write About It!
The magic involves writing on the strips and watching the words flutter and spin in the wind.
Here are some ideas:

  • Young children use the paper strips to write “w” words and letters.
  • Fill strips with words that describe the wind.
  • Write windy tongue twisters similar to the title of this activity!
  • Write wonder-why questions on the strips. (I wonder why the wind blows? I wonder where the wind goes?)
  • Turn each strip into a line for a poem that can be read anyway the wind flutters.
Categories: Early Childhood, Poetry, Science Writing | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Magical Wand Words

Magical wands add sparkle to play and writing.

Image of girl with magic wandPlay!

Make a magic wand for lots of swishing magical pretend. Use a stick with any type of star attached to the end for a traditional fairy tale wand. Don’t forget to glue lots of glitter to make a sparkle.

Now that you have a wand, what kind of magic do you want to make? Play and pretend then write your magic wand stories to share. Continue reading

Categories: Early Childhood, Fantasy and Fairy Tales | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Blast Off Space Adventure

This play to write activity is out of this world!
Play! Create the setting, characters, and rocket for playing out a space adventure.

Materials:
astronaut:
a clothespin, markers, plastic spray bottle top, foil, pipe cleaner
rocket: cylinder can or tube, construction paper, cardboard
space creature:
clay or any other materials you choose!

Make an astronaut:

  • draw a face on the round top
  • wrap a pipe cleaner around the clothespin for arms
  • dress the clothespin in a foil spacesuit
  • add a plastic top for a helmet

Make a Spaceship: Glue construction paper around a potato chip can or cardboard tube. Add a paper cone top and cardboard fins. Tape a paper cone to the top. Tip: If you want a spaceship that is more sturdy, use a cylinder can like the kind potato chips come in. This makes a good secure place for your astronaut to travel in too!

Make a Space Creature: Space creatures can be made anyway you like. It is up to your imagination! The one in the photo is clay, but you might want to make one that can fit inside the spaceship in case they want to travel together in your story.

Write About It! Continue reading

Categories: adventure writing | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Kids Write! Book

If you like these playful writing activities, checkout….

Kids Write!
Rebecca Olien

Kids Write Cover Want to find more activities using playful learning to encourage young writers?

Take a peek at Kids Write! Fantasy, Science Fiction, Mystery, Autobiography, Adventure and More!

View table of contents, sample pages and reviews at Amazon: http://amzn.to/A6SVmn

Winner of Teachers’ Choice AwardTeachers' Choice Award Seal

Categories: adventure writing, Animals/ Nature, Fantasy and Fairy Tales, Humor Writing, Talking Points, Uncategorized, Writing Games | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Engaging Kids with Questions

The right question is worth a thousand words. Well, maybe not a thousand words, but quite a few sentences! Just like adults, children writers often get stuck even when they are motivated to write through playful activities.
Asking engaging questions makes a world of difference to get those pencils moving (or keys clicking).

Here are some question pointers:

  • Ask open-ended questions that allows the child to answer in complete thoughts rather than one word answers
  • Listen to what the child is telling you about their story, and ask branching questions to help them add details
  • Be engaged with the child to learn about their thinking and imagination, ask questions that you really want to know about- children are masters of knowing when an adult is faking interest
  • Ask questions to help the child add details
  • Use the character names and details from the child’s writing in the question to show your involvement
  • Ask questions to help the child move the story forward- What happens next questions
  • If this is to be the child’s story be careful not to get so involved that you influence the child’s writing with your ideas.
    Continue reading
Categories: Talking Points | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Big Animal Adventures

Create life-size animals to act out amazing adventures, then write a book of favorite animal tales.

What you need:
large cardboard or paper, tempera paints, brushes

Big Animal Baby Elephant and Frog

Play!
Draw a large animal on the paper or cardboard. Make it almost as big as you! Paint the outlines of the animal in dark colors. Let dry. Come back and fill in the spaces with colors you choose. Let dry. Add details like hair, eyelashes, eye color, etc.. Now, have some fun playing with the animals and thinking up amazing adventures.

Write About It!

Continue reading

Categories: adventure writing, Animals/ Nature | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Stick People Adventure

Create fun stick people (or creature) figures and take them on some incredible adventures. What happens when these tiny characters meet find a stapler, a flashlight or your cat! What happens if you take them outdoors?

Play!
Draw, color, and cutout characters on index cards and glue them to craft sticks. Add fun details with colored paper, feathers, pipe cleaners or anything else you like. Leave some of the stick poking from the bottom so you can stick the character in a small glob of clay or in the ground so they stand up and you have your hands free to write their tales of adventure!Stick people photo

Write About It!

Start the Adventure
Decide who your main character will be. Tell the story through this character’s eyes. Find a place to begin your adventure. What does this character need or want to do? Give the character a reason to go on an adventure. Maybe your character is looking is trying to make a new discovery, find a new land, or save a kingdom.

Continue reading

Categories: adventure writing, Fantasy and Fairy Tales | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pyramid Adventure

Pyramid Adventure

Play! Build a cardboard pyramid by cutting 4 triangles the same size and taping them together. To give your pyramid a sandy look of stone, glue sandpaper to each cardboard triangle. Decorate the pyramid with hieroglyphics. Add clay figures, a tomb, treasure, as secret writing inside the pyramid.pyramid model

Here is a link to pyramids made by children to get you started.

http://library.thinkquest.org/CR0210200/ancient_egypt/build_a_pyramid.htm

Explore hieroglyphics

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/pyramid/hieroglyph/

Write About It!
Write a story about an explorer discovering the pyramid.

Start the Adventure: Describe the main character. What is this person’s reason for wanting to find a pyramid, or does he/she stumble on it by mistake?

Add Suspense and Challenges: What dangers, puzzles, or other challenges does the explorer overcome to find the pyramid? What happens when the pyramid is found? What does the explorer hear, see, feel?  Are there any trap doors, codes, or tricks to entering the pyramid? What happens when the explorer goes inside the pyramid? What do the hieroglyphics mean? How does the explorer crack the code? Is there anyone who does not want the explorer to be snooping around? What danger might the explorer be in? What does the explorer do to get out of trouble?

Ending the Story: How does your story end? How does discovering the pyramid change the main character? What will the explorer do with the new knowledge or treasures?

Categories: adventure writing | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Criss-Cross Rhinoceros

What you Need:

Grid paper large enough to easily write letters and see words on the page.

2- 4 players

Criss-Cross Rhinoceros Game Board

Example Game

How to Play!

1.Write the word “RHINOCEROS” in the center of the graph paper across or vertically.
2. Players take turns writing words as in an acrostic poem, using a letter from rhinoceros.
3. Words can also be included in the other words.
4. Play stops when no other words can be made.
5. The player with the most letters placed on the grid is the winner.

Adaptations:
Have children play with a partner to decide what word to place on the game sheet.
Allow dictionaries to help support correct spelling.
Change the beginning word to fit a special interest or topic.
Add double points for words that go with the theme (for this game, animal words)
Allow challenges. If a word is challenged and misspelled, a turn is missed.

Categories: Writing Games | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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