Updated: Apr 14
Let’s start with the positive news: the sun is shining! (At least in London.)
We can spend lots of time on our balcony and watch food delivery trucks drive by or park outside our building, we can complain about how hot it suddenly is and we can be grateful for the chance to have outdoor time.
Last week, the narrative was quite different – the weather was not exactly spring-like and the clouds felt like they wanted to push us further down. And as much as we love each other, sometimes it is hard to be so close to each other all day, every day, under the current circumstances.
So I thought we should try a few writing exercises where we can all connect as a family within our home and with our family members abroad.
I encouraged the kids to write a few questions for their grandparents. I mostly did this to get some Spanish in, but I realized it might also be a good writing exercise no matter the language. It’s also an exercise in creativity, as they know the people they are interviewing very well, and have to come up with some imaginative questions.
The only rules I set out for them were to write “one of each” (one question with who, one with when, one with where, etc.) and to avoid yes-no questions.
The grandparents have responded with questions of their own, and they are all learning more about each other, talking and writing often online.
Your children can also write a “celebrity profile” on one or more family members. You can use the worksheet provided as a template or create your own.
You can also encourage your children to interview family members and dig up interesting family stories. The children can then retell these stories in writing; it is fascinating to see what sticks with them about a story and what details they forget (or even change!).
Another fun activity you can do as a family is to write stories together, one sentence at a time, going around the table, each person adding one line.
You can add an extra challenge: have everyone write one or more words on a piece of paper before starting, then pass it to the person sitting to the right, who has to use those words in their sentences.
I hope you can all find some time to be creative together and support each other.