OR…How to Make Your Own Prep Write Journal
The Prep Write Journal is a name I made up to use in place of a “pre-school journal.” I’ve done a little research into the idea and what I found surprised me. Pre-school journaling has gotten a bad rap. The educators that I talked to denounced writing, explaining that the important thing at this stage of development is promoting fine motor skills like the pincher grasp. They don’t concern themselves with actual writing.
And, a lot of the pre-school journals out in the blog-o-sphere are worksheets that kids trace. These are also frowned upon at this stage. That’s ok. I understand what they’re saying, and they are the professionals.
What I disagree with is
the idea that a journal is only about writing. A journal is a log of our daily activities and progress. It can be scribbles, stickers, or just about anything. So, my idea is to put those fine motor skill activity sheets in a binder or a composition notebook or folded over sheets of paper that are stapled.
Prep Write journal is nothing more than a way to showcase your child or grandchild’s progress in developing those fine motor skills.
It’s so easy to make it practically makes itself! Here’s what to do:
1. Make a few little books to keep on hand by folding 4-5 8.5 x 11-inch papers in half and staple on the outside. Done.
2. Print off whatever printables you like from this blog and all the other blogs out there and put them in a binder. Done.
3. Buy a large supply of composition notebooks when they go on sale for Back-to-School, like right now. They are 50 cents at Walmart and Target and sometimes Staples and Office Max, etc.
4. Keep your kids’ journals in a convenient spot with a few supplies handy:
*stickers. The peel and stick action aids that pincher grasp as well.
* crayons. Different sizes and lengths strengthens that pincher grasp.
* colored pencils. Kids have to press harder to get as much color.
* markers, skinny, fat, and dot markers
* One article recommended triangular barreled pencils. I’d never actually seen them before, but look what I found at Walmart:
The extra leads are 1.3 mm which is great so they won’t break leads as often. Regular #2 pencils are 7mm and extra firm is 9mm.
5. Work in your own journal at the same time. This gives you a chance to write while setting a good example and monitoring the mess all at once. We love to multi-task, right?
6. You can set a regular time everyday to establish the habit OR you can work whenever the mood hits.
7. You can use printables OR draw out your own activities by hand.
8. Use Stickers, Cheerios or even race cars of different sizes to trace letters and numbers.
Working with your kids is its own reward. They love to do just about anything if it’s with you! Keeping a little book of progress is so enjoyable for them to look at later and see that they really have made progress.