Q: How do you handle a reluctant writer in terms of notebooking?
A: By changing the medium or reducing words.
Whether the reluctance is because of a learning uniqueness or simply because of personality, the tips below should help.
Actually, notebooking has a huge advantage over traditional worksheets and tests in that it is extremely flexible. There are so many different ways a child can express what he learned that there have to be at least a few methods of narration that will fit every learner.
Here are my two main strategies for encouraging reluctant writers to use notebooking.
Change the Medium
What does this reluctant writer like doing? Can he use another medium to relate his lessons?
- drawing or sketching
- role play and short videos
- using the computer
Allow him to narrate with other forms and then try to get those documented into the notebook somehow. Drawings are easy enough. Videos and role play may require photographs.
If the computer motivates him, allow him to make digital notebooking pages. In that case, The Publisher at Notebooking Pages may be an option to consider.
Instead of full fledged paragraphs, require only words and phrases. Try bulletted lists or diagrams to record information without having to assemble the ideas into complete sentences.
Use arrows and other graphic organization to represent the relationships between ideas instead of clearly writing those ideas.
To help with structuring these kinds of notebooking pages, start with a printable graphic organizer. For a long list of them visit A Homeschooler’s Guide to Graphic Organizers.
There is no magic remedy for reluctant writers, only strategies. Keep trying! It may be a maturity issue that will change with time. If not, realize that writing may always be a challenge, but there are techniques to lesson the sting.