I’m Hungry and I Just Don’t Have Enough
by Little Britches (age 7)
My stomach is empty
As empty as a log.
My stomach is empty,
As empty as a hedgehog’s.
I ate ten houses.
I ate ten people.
I didn’t have enough,
I wasn’t full.
Little Britches has fought every traditional approach to schooling. I have not pushed him to participate in school. He has to be in the room while we read. I do often ask him questions, so I can tell he is paying attention. Little Britches has shown no interest in the reading or writing lessons I have tried to give him. He does love books and he loves to be read to. He even included writing in one of his recent lego creations.
Two websites I have been following lately are Catching Foxes and Wonderfarm. Both are great resources for teaching your children to write. Wonderfarm writes in detail about dictation. Catching Foxes writes about using writers’ notebooks. Last week we started notebook time. Thomas Jefferson Education says to “Structure Time not Content” I did not tell the kids what do write, just that they had to write something. The younger two dictated to me.
Little Britches has had difficulty with this structured time. After some encouragement (and the realization he wasn’t getting out of it) he would finally give me a small sentence to write down for him. This morning during notebook time was no different. After some prodding he gave me the sentence, “We moved our TV.” One sentence was all I asked for and that was fine. Later in the afternoon while I was reading and he was just rolling around on the couch he suddenly made the statement, “I made a poem” and he recited the above poem to me. With his permission I wrote the poem in his notebook. He seemed excited about it and dictated another poem and two stories.
I love watching the kids make these leaps and bounds.