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from the Author
“I’d like my child to do more writing.”
“I have a difficult time getting two sentences out of him.”
“I’d like my student to have a greater range of writing experience.”
Perhaps one of these mirrors your personal experience and that’s why this book has caught your eye.
Parents have asked me, “How do I get my child to write?”
“With narration,” I reply. Then, I briefly explain the method of narration. I encourage home teachers to read aloud to their children, and then to request that the children tell, in their own words, what was just read to them. It’s that simple. “At the heart of writing is the ability to tell – the ability to narrate,” I share with them.
“If we would believe it, composition is as natural as jumping and running to children who have been allowed due use of books.” Charlotte Mason
Books of quality will be the main source of a young child’s composition. By putting what is read in his own words through narration, he is learning, from the authors of these books, how to use words. He is developing writing skills naturally, without even being conscious of it.
With all this reading and retelling going on, it isn’t difficult to switch gears to make room for creative telling rather than re-telling. While a child’s “imagination muscles” do develop by narrating from books, these and other intellectual abilities also grow as they are used in a more playful way with creative narration.
Instead of expecting a child to compose “from scratch” by supplying him with only a topic, a task even the average adult finds daunting, we can kindle in him a keenness to write with unfinished story. This draws him into a colorful situation. Some stories plunge him into a predicament that holds him in suspense. Upon the invitation, “What happens next?” the child then springs forth to enhance and embellish the story as much as he wants.
I instruct the student how to improve his rough draft “on second thought.” For instance, where can he add more descriptive vocabulary or sensory language? Can he use a vivid verb in place of a general one? A handful of lessons give students practice with the basic elements of short story writing.
Story Starters is a one-book-per-family, non-consumable, lavishly illustrated, supplementary English course. I explain how to use the story starters with four levels of ability, making it useful for grades 4 through 12—but younger siblings can take part, too.
|Charlotte Mason Research
|Softcover, Black and White
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