July 14, 2012

Making Writing Fun: Journals

Writing. Upon hearing the word, most students let out an audible moan or sigh. But why? [Hey, that rhymed] I want students to have a positive, well at least not a negative, reaction when hearing the word 'writing'. This past school year, I started having the students keep a journal in which we wrote for three minutes at the beginning of every class. Some of the topics were serious, some were funny, some were WAY out there. The students liked it okay, but I want to make it a little more exciting this year.

This year I'm going to be placing jar of the thin colored markers that can be used to write with at each table [we don't have desks, we have tables that fit three students]. These markers were originally going to be used to taking notes [I'll talk about that in a different post], but now I think I'll use them for journals too.

The students are each required to purchase a $.50 composition notebook during the first week of school. These can be found at Target, but I'm sure they might be cheaper at other stores such as Walmart or maybe even Office Depot when they have their Back to School sales. Of course, since we can't legally require students to purchase items for school, I always have a few extra. This year, I'm going to have the students decorate them. They can put anything on it as long as it's school appropriate [no pictures of alcohol, drugs, etc.]. I'll explain to the the idea of Mod Podge & paper for a scrapbooking concept, and/or a lot of kids are into the designer duct tape now.

These are my example notebooks I'm going to show the kids. The left one is paper and Mod Podge,
and the one to the right is Zebra duct tape! The duct tape is a good reinforcer too.
 I am also going to have the students write their three minute journal entries in the colored pens/markers too. I think it will be a fun and different writing experience for them.

Last year I had the trouble of trying to come up with a journal entry idea every morning. I know, it seems like I should have just had some ready...so now I do! I have compiled a list of sixty different journal entry topics [I only have the students for a semester due to our accelerated program], but I can always come up with more down the road. I know that sometimes it's hard to come up with ideas, so hopefully you can use these, or just use them as a jumping off point.

 You can find the Journal Prompt ideas in the Printable Freebies page :)
Check out this freebie on:

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
Let me know if you have any other ideas for making writing fun! I'd love to hear from you!

Ms. W

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