Last Friday was more of a tutoring session than a class as I only have one student. She is nine, and as precocious as you can imagine. I taught her the same material as the two older kids the day before. She also was quick on the draw and understood the concepts for starting a story. She is an adventurous young lady, but really, I expected nothing less from a fellow WIS kid. When given the option for a prompt, she chose the Scrambler option from Story Starters. It was a learning experience for me as well, as I hadn’t chosen the Scrambler option while I researched. So, we did it together. What emerged was so nonsensical, we looked at each other and simultaneously chorused “Next!”. So we spun the wheel again, so to speak, and we are now engaged in an adventure about a girl who sails on a ship with a cheerful captain, who discovers a secret waterfall. A bit complicated, no? But intrepid she is so she decided to stick with it.
For this student, I became more involved in the writing process, as almost immediately, she said “I’m kinda stuck.” So I started by asking her questions about her main character, who it turned out was named Annabeth. My young budding writer has a love of all things Rick Riordan, hence the character name. Since I do as well, we were off to a good start. Through question and answer, we gave her a best friend sidekick, a dad who was sailing for work to Haiti, and set up the problem. It turns out that our heroine is afraid of storms and losing her dad. Kids come up with some very grown up ideas.
The hardest thing about Friday’s class was letting her write the story she wants to write. Not the one that I think she should. I hope I got around this successfully by giving her two or three different ideas for each question she asked. This week’s lesson is rising action, but you’ll just have to wait for my next blogpost to hear what fun I have planned for that class.