Topic | written narration and. boys

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  • LindseyS

    Can we talk about boys and writing for a minute?  I have two girls and one boy and writting with boys is a whole lot different then writing with girls.  Any tips on getting consistent handwriting, spelling, capitalization would be much appreciated!

    That aside, how about some recommendations on books that led to good narrations from your boys?  My son is 12, and loves science, especially technology.  Some books that I had good luck with so far this year : The American Story, The Giver,  Inventions that Çould have Change the. World but Didn’t.  Book that were not successful for narrations: Tuck Everlasting and Pagoo. Any suggestions?




    Boys and girls are different creatures, that is for sure.  I have so many boys (7) but only my oldest boy is up to written narration.  However the next oldest boy is 8 and with him, especially, I have seen that the material we choose to read really affects his narration ability.  He thrives on non-fiction and biographies are second best. Fiction, story driven narrative, isn’t as memorable to him.  He’s a facts and figures guy.  (This may just be him though, he’s my gifted learner and so he’s been a bit different all around so far.)

    For getting consistent handwriting, really my only advice is to keep copywork going a few days per week.  Other things that have helped my oldest boy (he’s 11) is to remind him before we begin that I want to be able to read what he wrote (and he has to read it aloud to me if I can’t, which he really doesn’t like doing).  If I’m wanting him to remember capitalization we’ll go over when we capitalize before a writing assignment and I’ll not worry about anything else in it.  Honestly, with written narration, I’m not worrying about spelling and capitalization, etc.  We try to choose ONE writing piece each month to take all the way through the editing process, and that is the only one where we pay attention to those things.  And not on the original written narration when he first writes it, just when we are ready to edit.


    My son’s narrations were always the best when he was reading action packed books.  2 of his favorite books were the Diary of Sargeant York and the Great War and Little Britches. He also really enjoyed Landmark books for history at that age.

    I can’t help you with handwriting except to say just be consistent in requiring written work every day. My son is 20 now and his handwriting is far from pretty but it’s decent and legible. A child must want nice handwriting before they will put in the effort to have nice handwriting. Boys often just don’t care.



    Melanie, thanks for the book recommendations. I think your right, action is critical. And Tristan thanks for the reminder that not every narration need to be edited.  I was doing that earlier in the year (in fact for those two book I said he did well with) and then, more recently, started trying a more IEW style (outline, rough draft, add style techniques, final draft). Hmmmm, thanks for stimulating some introspection! I think that might be the root of the problem!

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