All About ME!
Updated: Nov 28, 2019
First person stories
Who is the person you know best? Yourself (hopefully!).
While last week the focus was on wearing a costume, becoming someone else, and writing about it, this week it’s all about YOU!
After all, this is an area we are experts in, the topic we know the most about is our own life. A couple of week ago, I wrote about creating characters, and today we will write about ourselves, as we are the central characters of our life story.
You may remember I spoke about a visible side of a character or a person (what almost anyone can notice, such as your appearance, age, what you do for a living, or your place in the family). But not everybody knows some other details about you, such as what your skills and talents are, what personality you have, what your favorite things are, and what you want to do today.
We’ll be talking about point of view – who is telling the story. The most commonly used points of view are first person (I or we) and third person (they, she, he, it).
Some examples here:
First person: I am so excited today!
Third person: Eugenia is very excited today.
We’ll be focusing on the first person, mainly the I.
Children who sometimes struggle with their imagination and prefer to write about facts can definitely benefit from this exercise. They get to be the star of the show, and you can adjust this exercise depending on your child’s age and writing level.
The first option is to ask children to write a short text to introduce themselves. What’s their name, their age, their favorite sport? Do they have a pet, real or imaginary? Encourage them to talk about themselves, and remind them to talk about what they like and what they don’t, places they would like to go or they have been, people who make them happy… the possibilities are endless.
Very young writers can start by drawing a picture of themselves and writing a few things about them next to it.
Another option to practice writing in the first person is to write a diary entry. Journals and diaries are great for describing specific events of a particular day, from the point of view of the writer. What happened and how do you feel about it? Even if you include other people in your entry, the story will be told from your point of view.
To some of you, this may sound like an easy task, but sometimes children go from I to he or she, switching points of view mid-story, especially when they write fiction. The story is about a character roughly their age, and at some point, the he or she becomes I. It is important to remember who is telling the story, who the narrator is.
For those who would prefer to write fiction, this week they can use the first person point of view for a fictional character. It can also be an introduction or a journal entry (only the I will be someone made-up); or it can be a short story in the first person.
They can pretend to be a child who just moved to a new city and is introducing himself or herself to the children at school, or it can be an adult talking about a long day working at a cinema, picking apples, teaching music. For fictional stories, the I does not even need to be a person. Let them go wherever their imagination takes them!