My daughter LOVES anime. She loves to watch it, read it, sing Japanese songs, and draw anime characters. Because she loves it so much, I use it as part of her schooling. Surely no Mom has ever tried to sneak a little schooling into fun! You could say this is a little sneaky, because it is. I just say it’s creative. I use it as a portion of her reading and art assignments.
Lately, the two of us have been working on writing skills. It’s not always fun, in fact, she thinks it is down right boring. Though she enjoys writing, she doesn’t like our “writing” lessons all that much. Go figure! The key word here is “*lessons.* In her mind, writing is fun, but learning about writing isn’t.
I decided to introduce her to the idea of starting a blog. So what do a blog and writing lessons have in common. They have my child and your child in common. Whenever a kid writes something, they usually say, “Mom read this.” Most kids want others to read what they have written. A blog is a super way to find an audience and encourage a reluctant writer. My daughter uses her new blog to write anime stories…fan fiction.
Since I use WordPress, she decided to use it as well. Some other choices would be Blogger or Typepad. She had fun setting up her blog, deciding what theme to use and such. Now she is in love with the ability to showcase her anime stories for others to read. I am “in love” with the fact that she lets me use the blog to help teach writing.
Her new blog has given me a fantastic avenue for discussing grammar and writing. She doesn’t mind talking about her writing because it is real, not just an assignment. Since she has “ownership” of the post, she is very interested in making sure it is written correctly. She doesn’t want others to go to her blog and see junk. I think that is awesome…no more begging and bribing just to get her to write a story.
Each time she writes a new chapter in her fan fiction, she and I sit together to edit. We call it co-editing. The more we sit together and edit, the more she learns from her mistakes and the less I see those same mistakes. We also discuss sentence structure, story flow, adjective use…
I encourage her in something she loves, and in return, she gains new skills and strengthens ones she already has.
Does she still make mistakes? Sure she does, but she learns more each time she works on a piece. Blogging has made learning to write much more interesting and fun for her, and for that, I am one thankful Mom!