Wednesday, August 10, 2016

A Variety of Journals

I am a big believer in beginning to introduce Kinder students to a variety of different journaling practices. We have our regular Writing Journals where we do mostly freestyle-creative writing, not necessarily from a prompt. In addition to that I use:

Poetry Journals-we read the same poem together during whole group instruction for the week and then on Fridays we add the poem to our journals and draw an illustration of what it means. I use funny poems like Shel Silverstein and Jack Prelutsky and then classics like Robert Frost and Langston Hughes.

Inquiry Journals-this is going to be new for me this year. I am going to start having the kiddos keep a journal where they can write maybe once or twice per week, recording what they wonder about. I wonder.... Maybe a jump start for some project-based learning or genius hour type activities.

Quote Journals-I think interpreting quotes really tests our critical thinking abilities. I give the students a quote to glue in and they illustrate in the beginning with just a picture and then as the year progresses with a sentence to describe the poem.

Gratitude Journals-I started doing this myself a few years ago and find it to be really soul-nourishing. I ask the kids to write about things they are grateful for. Sometimes I give them direction-something you are grateful for that you can't see (past answers included freedom, the wind, the Tooth Fairy, God). Things you are grateful for that are small, at school, etc. I just LOVE reading the things they come up with.

Data Journals-yes, I know many Kinder teachers cringe when they talk about kids tracking their own data. However, I have found that it helps show the kiddos the growth they have made over the year and I love doing Student-Led Conferences in the Spring where they go through that data with their parents like experts.

Do you have any creative journals in your class to share?


  1. Look at all the ways your kids are using writing as a thinking tool. :)

  2. I am trying to get them ready for 1st Grade Tammy! :)