Writing Prompts for Kids
It’s usually at this time of the year when many homeschool families start to get a little antsy. Spring is in the air, and if you follow a semi-traditional school calendar, you know you’re somewhere around 2/3 of the way through your school year. And if you school year ’round, well, there are times when you may be sensing a rut coming on or even just feeling the homeschool blahs. Whatever your situation, with younger kids or older….sometimes we just need a little something new and out of the ordinary to help keep us moving along.
One way we absolutely love to change things up a bit is to find those quirky and often unknown holidays that are just waiting to be celebrated. You know, the ones that are really silly, like Crazy Hair Day. But, there are a wealth of other things we can celebrate that also honor inventors and their inventions, laws that have passed, events that changed history, and people who’ve made a difference in this world. We’ve been doing this for a while and it’s always something my boys look forward to.
When they were still really little, we created simple unit studies in honor of whatever holiday we were celebrating. For instance, if we were going to celebrate the birthday of a famous children’s author, I’d find what ever resources I could online: worksheets, coloring pages, games, and activities. And then we’d pick up books from the library by that author and spend the whole day immersed in a fun and simple unit study for the day, all in the name of CELEBRATION!
I always loved those days because I knew without a doubt that my boys were learning and enjoying themselves while doing so. The entire day felt connected and free-flowing. And one of the best parts was that it actually felt like a holiday because we spent the time planning for it. We even had a special lunch and once in a while, and there were balloons and streamers. Yes, we love ourselves a party!
As they’ve gotten older, our school load has increased some, so we don’t always have time for a whole day-long celebration. Although I do try to still have them sprinkled throughout the year because, honestly, both my little boys and my big boys still look forward to them. And so do I.
Now that a couple of my boys are elementary aged and writing more, I’ve adapted our celebrations to include (almost) daily writing prompts. What I love about this is that these prompts are easy to create, really get the kids’ brains thinking, and they’re learning something historical or interesting each day.
Any time of the year is a good time to begin celebrating and learning about these lesser-known holidays, but March is a great time to begin. The history lessons are rich that month, and the wacky holidays are plentiful. There’s something for everyone!
Here is a list of some of the things we have marked on our calendar:
March 3: National Anthem Day
March 6: Dentist’s Day
March 10: Middle Name Pride Day
March 11: Johnny Appleseed Day
March 12: Worship of Tools Day
March 13: Plant a Flower Day! (Yay…Spring is almost here)
March 14: Learn About Butterflies Day, National Pi Day and Popcorn Lover’s Day
March 15: Everything You Think is Wrong Day, Ides of March and Incredible Kid Day
March 16: Freedom of Information Day
March 17: St. Patrick’s Day
March 18: Supreme Sacrifices Day
March 20: Spring Equinox (Spring is here!!)
March 20: International Earth Day
March 22: National Goof Off Day
March 23: Near Miss Day
March 24: Palm Sunday and National Chocolate Covered Raisin Day
March 25: Waffle Day
March 26: Make Up Your Own Holiday-Day
March 28: Something on a Stick Day
March 29: Good Friday and National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day
March 31: Easter
And these are only some of the holidays listed. You can find these and more along with links to more info about each one of these days at Holiday Insights.
Another way for you to include daily historical lessons is to do a search online or even in your App Store that includes the words, “on this day in history”. My boys LOVE to know what exactly was going on on this very day in 1847. They get so excited to learn that on March 6, 1950, Silly Putty was invented. And really, I love this kind of stuff too. The same site I mentioned also includes the more historical days of the year which is so helpful to have all on one site.
As you can see there are a plethora of ideas just waiting to be explored here. You could use holidays and historical events to create a whole unit study or use as a jumping off point for writing prompts as The Teacher’s Corner has done. Here is one of their examples:
On March 6, 1475, artist Michelangelo was born. Using resources in the classroom, learn five (5) facts about the Michelangelo and summarize them in your own words.
Or how about this one:
On March 18, 1837, Grover Cleveland was born. Cleveland later became the 22nd & 24th President of the United States. He was known for his honesty and courage. What two (2) character traits do you feel you are best known for?
The Teacher’s Corner is a great resource for writing prompts, however it’s pretty easy to come up with your own as well. For instance, on National Goof Off Day, you could ask your kids to make a short bucket list of all the things they’d like to do on that day. Or ask your children to write a brief description of the mood among those in the crowd as Jesus entered Jerusalem and why we celebrate Palm Sunday. With writing prompts, you can tailor them for each age level and even include your littlest ones by asking them to draw pictures or act things out.
Many of our best homeschooling days include learning about and celebrating some of the lesser knowns and many of the amazing things that make up our history.
We love to do holiday celebrations. In fact, I create little lessons for DenSchool about holidays. It is great because it is something out of the normal routine that really helps everyone relax and focus on fun
This is SO fabulous Megan. I am absolutely doing this next year with my kids. I always change up each year something “extra” like this and I LOVE this idea a whole lot. Thank you for sharing!