I’m always on the look out for opportunities I can offer the children to get them interested in writing. Sitting rather reluctant writers down with a blank piece of paper and a pencil and saying ‘let’s write a story’ doesn’t work for us – but adding writing in to play or setting up a invitation which sparks their interest does.
Create your own opening crawl
This idea for creating a story on a roll popped into my head when I was thinking about a different way for us to use our easel. Adding a long roll of paper to the easel made me think of the opening credits to Star Wars, when the text crawls up the screen and I thought we could use it all summer long to create a story.
The basic idea is to start off a story at the top of the paper roll and have everyone add to it, unrolling the paper as you go.
You could start the children off using Star Wars own iconic beginning ‘A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…’ or use a different prompt to get your story going. Everyone can join in, adding a new sentence or illustration each day, in a collaborative way. Who knows where your story will end up by the end of the summer?
Locate your scroll somewhere everyone will see it often, so they are encouraged to plan the next twist to the tale and add a few lines. You could place it up the side of the fridge, or even on the bathroom door. Ours is in the hall so even visitors can add to our story.
The children might take the original prompt and run with it, but you could always add in a few surprise sentences or pictures overnight as a prompt for them to discover the next morning.
May the (story telling) force be with you, all summer long.