Diaries and Journals
It’s good to see you here. I can’t believe it’s been a week already. How is that possible? I blink and then the days go by and I can’t always remember what I had for dinner the day before or if we worked out, and did we vacuum yesterday or was it Monday?
This is life – we get caught up in a succession of small moments that make up our day, our week, a month, a year.
Sometimes I look at the calendar and I feel like there is no way we could be halfway through the year. There are days that feel like weeks and weeks that feel likes months, but then I look back and feel like it was only yesterday that we were leaving the house to go to work, to school, to meet with friends…
I don’t want to get too philosophical about the passage of time, but I think there is a writing tool you and your children can use to pause and look at what you’ve done over a period of time, or they can reflect on what has been remarkable for them.
Sometimes at dinnertime I ask the kids what their favorite part of their day was and why. There is no right or wrong answer, I just want to hear their voices as they get excited about something they remember.
It’s good to reflect on what we have done – the good, the bad and the memorable.
Back in November I posted about writing in the first person. One of the options for non-fiction was to write a diary entry. Journals and diaries are great for describing events or ideas from the point of view of the writer. What happened and how do you feel about it?
While sometimes they are used interchangeably, and you can use these tools to write about what you have done on a particular day or week, journals can be slightly different in that you can use them to describe what you have done or you can use them to reflect on general ideas, thoughts or feelings.
Diaries are written in the first person, but of course children can write diary entries as fiction for characters they have created (I can think of Bridget Jones, but many children may be thinking of a certain wimpy kid).
Whichever way they choose to write (autobiographically or not), I have included a worksheet where they can draw a picture of a particular highlight of the week and write something about it. I have included some sentence starters if your child needs a prompt, but here’s a blank option if they already know what they’d like to write. The worksheets have more/less lines to accommodate different handwriting sizes.
A note about journals: some children will choose not to show you what they’ve written and that’s okay, diaries and journals are very personal and not all children will want to share this with you, so don’t take it as just a writing exercise, as to many children this can be much more. That being said, when they show your work to you, you can find out more about how they feel and what was meaningful to them at that particular time.
I hope your children enjoy reflecting on their week.