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Working with Kids--Inspiration Galore!

Cheryl's Musings: Working with Kids--Inspiration Galore!

Cheryl's Musings

How to Thrive on the Writer's Road


Working with Kids--Inspiration Galore!

Last week, I began volunteer work in my younger son's 4th grade classroom. I get to meet one-on-one with students and discuss their writing with them. My job is to help them narrow their topics and find areas where they can be more specific, show rather than tell, or add more details to their stories. It's a blast! I love connecting with these kids and, hopefully, helping them to get excited about writing.

It's also incredibly inspiring for my own writing. Each week, I get a first-hand glimpse into these kids' lives through their writing. Here are some of the things 4th-graders write about:

  • Pokemon games (including which Pokemon they've collected, how they've evolved, and which are their favorites)

  • An older brother who pulled someone down the stairs by her legs, and the tickle retaliation that ensued

  • A "best trick" contest that involved jumping off the sofa into a gargantuan pillow pile

  • A lost and found pet mouse

  • A hose-squirting water battle that turned into a fist fight

  • Sneaking down to the beach at a vacation house--and getting caught by parents

  • A little sister who filled her swimsuit full of sand

Sometimes it's easy to forget that things that seem unimportant from our "grownup" viewpoints are big and real to kids. Kids are learning everything for the first time: how to solve problems, deal with lost pets, be best at something. They throw their whole hearts into life. Games, brothers, parents, fights--these are important.

I set out to help, and in return I've received a gift. Maybe that's the way life works.

:) Cheryl

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