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Preschool Writing:

My First Story Notebook


Today's Snack: It's amazing how creative young children are. Try this: give the child a few crackers, some squares of cheese, and maybe some round cookie-cutouts of bologna. Now ask the child to tell you a story involving these food shapes. Be sure to serve apple juice to wash down the "characters" after the child has invented a tale about them.






Buy a wide-ruled spiral notebook with a pretty cover,

and let each child write his or her name on the cover

Blank printer paper | crayons, colored pencils or markers | No. 2 pencil



Young children can have fun stretching their imaginations, practicing their story creating skills, and collecting some of the wild and crazy stories that pour out of their churning young minds. All the adults have to do is be there with a pencil, ready to record.


Of course you don't expect a preschool child to be able to write more than his or her name, and maybe, as kindergarten approaches, a few short words, usually in all-capital letters.


But experienced parents know that truly creative and unique stories come pouring out of the youngest children almost every day. So it's a wonderful habit now, and will become a treasure in the future, if you "capture" those stories for your child.


Keep the spiral notebook and pencil handy and try to ask the child every day if she or she can tell any stories. Sometimes, the child will just look outside, and poof! A long, drawn-out, detailed, funny or poignant story will come pouring out. So be ready to "catch" it.


You can show the child how you indent paragraphs, write neatly, start every sentence with a capital and end every sentence with a period, but that won't be as important to the child as the art work that brings the story alive.


So always have a supply of blank paper on hand, too, with some colored markers, crayons or colored pencils, and let the child make at least one illustration to go with each story.


You can tape the illustration on the left-facing page of the "spread," and write the story on the right-side page.


Be sure to date each creation!


Someday - maybe a high school graduation party, or a wedding display? - that first "Story Notebook" is going to be a treasured and cherished piece of memorabilia, not only for the child, but for you, too.


By Susan Darst Williams Writing 2010


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