The month of August typically signifies the last few weeks of summer before students and teachers return to school. Encourage family relationship building by participating in family activities throughout the month of August. Here are some suggestions!
Wild and Crazy Words
Make writing a little “wild and crazy” by ditching the pen and paper and using unique materials that will make your kids really smile while they’re having fun.
Explore and Write About Nature
In this activity, children look closely at living things in their natural environments and then make books about what they see.
Follow the Word Trail: Organize a Treasure Hunt
Create a treasure hunt out of word-puzzle clues hidden around the home or yard.
Creating Family Timelines
Children can interview family members and make an illustrated timeline of the most important family events and memories.
What else can you do as a family before school starts back up?
As educators, we understand the shifts we are making in our own practices. It’s important to think about how these changes are being communicated to families. What is essential to share? It seems best to keep it simple. Better yet, our challenge is to show not tell as we involve families in the literacy learning happenings within our schools on an ongoing basis.
Here’s a group of educators that didn’t need to tell families about the importance of reading and writing more complex texts across the disciplines because they are showing it:
- Meet third-grade teacher, Bev Gallagher. She made notebooking a regular part of her instructional practices. These notebooks will become a treasured part of each child’s school career long after third grade.
- Julie Wollman, a ReadWriteThink.org and NCTE author, shows us how to get started with family message journals as a means for students to write to an authentic audience about their learning.
- Because the ways we teach writing are often quite different from the ways most of our students’ parents learned to write, it is important to think about productive ways to get families involved as strong allies for excellent writing instruction. The authors of “Inviting Parents In: Expanding Our Community Base to Support Writing” describe workshops and other methods for getting parents productively involved in their children’s literacy development.
- Watch as a parent who is in a Community of Practice with teachers shares what it means to learn, talk, and design activities as a full CoP member with teachers.
Join us over at ReadWriteThink.org on the Parent & Afterschool Resources site for engaging ways to introduce children to reading or to encourage teens to write. Need some age-appropriate book suggestions or rainy day activities? These materials are your answer—all of them created by experts to be fun, educational, and easy to use outside of school.
What role do parents and families play in your school?
The holiday season is here, which usually means spending time with family. Listen in to this podcast episode as host Emily Manning discusses some heartwarming books about families. If you are spending time with family over winter break, in person or virtually, work together on these activities:
Create a Game: Playing board games or card games can be a fun activity, so why not make your own?
Play Bingo! Work together, create a bingo board that can be played while walking around town, going to the zoo or a museum, or traveling on a vacation.
Write Letters to Friends and Family: Invite young adults to write letters to classmates, postcards from travels, and e-mails to family and friends.
Recording Family Stories: Teens can take part in the process of building family histories by recording the stories, or memoirs, of family members.
Creating Family Timelines: Children can interview family members and make an illustrated timeline of the most important family events and memories.
See you in 2017!