I love using books as a springboard for encouraging kids to write their own stories. The Ready, Set, Go series is a favorite of mine. I bought levels 1-3 and these are kindergarten and early first grade reading level. These are very simple, four page books, with repetitive text. It’s a great model for kids who don’t know where to begin. They see these books and say, “Hey, I can do that!”
Once you have a writer at your house, you need to have blank books ready to go! My favorite books are simple, four page books, (just like the Ready, Set, Go books). I use scrapbook paper and staple four blank pages inside. (The kids can always add more pages if needed.) My kindergartners like to create their own covers, so another sheet of white paper on top leaves room for a title and illustration. I always put a little smiley face in the upper left hand corner of my pre-made books. The kids know if the book is smiling at them, then it’s facing the right direction. I always put it in the upper left because it draws the eye to that spot first. If your kids are just learning that we write from left to right, this is a helpful little trick.
Don’t forget to create an area in your home specifically designated to hold writing supplies for the kids. This is my FAVORITE tip! I love having a writing center in my house and it’s SUPER easy to make. I made this out of pegboard and a few pegboard accessories. I have another, more portable, writing center in a cute little craft bag. Blank books, envelopes, cards, papers, sticky notes, and maybe even a list of sight words is all you need! It’s great when kids have everything they need at their fingertips. Let the writing begin!
I’ve posted some tips for creating a home writing center, here in this post.