First grade has a daily journaling assignment. Yes, first grade. child editor I have nothing against daily writing.  In fact, I wish I wrote that often, BUT my first grader barely reads and prefers NOT to write. So, I have him draw a picture and then dictate to me 3-4 sentences about the picture and we call that journaling.  I also have given him free reign over the journaling topic. There isn’t anything traditional about Rhett’s journal. You won’t learn what he did, ate or thought that day.  What you will learn about is the latest adventures of two fictional spherical characters {one blue and one red} that go by the names of Bully and El Toro. It appears that Bully is good and El Toro is filled with evil. Bully can handle himself in a difficult situation, but El Toro is doomed for failure. Rhett is VERY specific in his dictation.  He speaks slowly so that I can print his words exactly.  He pauses when we are at the end of a sentence.  Occasionally he will look over my shoulder to make sure I am writing the right thing. The other day we were mid-story.  Rhett was trying to increase my writing speed because we were getting to the good part… Write:  El Toro did it again. I wrote El Toro did it again. Write: and I paused waiting for the next word. Write:  AND! What are you going to say next?  I am just waiting for your next sentence. WRITE:  AND!! I am waiting for your next sentence because you won’t need the word “and”.  We can’t START a sentence with “and” and if we add it to the last sentence, it will make the sentence too long. I said to write the word “and”. Trust me.  When we are done, I will read it back and you will see that you don’t need the word “and”. Mom.  I said to write the word “and”! OK, it is YOUR journal. Yes, write “and”. I relented and erased the period at the end of the sentence and wrote the word “and”. Write:  When El Toro did it again, Bully walked away. I wrote the additional words on the journal entry. Now read it back to me. El Toro did it again and when El Toro did it again, Bully walked away. Mom, erase the “and”.

You Might Also Like

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. I love that you work on this together! This is how I learned children should start journaling when I was in college.