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Let Him Write

“How do you spell bunches?” he asked. I lifted my head from my pillow to see him situated quietly at my feet.

He twirled the end of the red magic marker in between the corner ofย  his lips. His eyes darted around the room as if they were searching for inspiration – a seed to plant so words could grow and flourish into such a splendid tale that whoever stumbles upon this very first sentence in his book, would be immediately hooked.

Oh yes. My darling boy, he’s writing.

His journal and mine – and a little rock and roll while we write. Him and I are a lot alike. We need some background noise when we write. Little dude loves his AC/DC.

He began writing in a journal at night when school was particularly rough last year. His teacher was a real jerk and made him feel less than his peers and in an attempt to build his confidence up, we talked about the things that made him unique and wonderful.

What are the things you’re good at?

Now when I’m unwell those pesky, nagging, no good, terrible, stinky thoughts tell me I’m awful at everything so this was a challenge. Instead, we tried to focus on what things made him feel good in his day.

I thought that the things he found joy in were absolutely remarkable like being able to have the last bowl of cereal in the box because the powder is the best part.

The way our dog sneezes and follows him around the house.

How he has the same best friends since JK/SK, snacks, sunny days, hockey, and the friendly crossing guard who asks him about how tall he’s getting.

But it’s his stories though.

On parent teacher interview night, she showed us Chunky Monkey’s story about his Monster.

Hands down it was brilliant and I’m not saying that just because I’m his mom.

The story starts out with kids chasing this awful sound into the basement and finding bloody prints on the wall.

The kids vanished.

Their Papa was scared when he couldn’t find them and when he was lured into the basement by the same sound…

…the monster came out and ate him too.

Shawn and I almost flipped the teeny tiny table as we stood to give a standing ovation.

But his teacher was f***en mortified.

“This is disturbing,” she said, “He’s eight years old. He’s talking about blood. The other kids wrote about their monsters being cookie eaters and candy eaters and being way too smelly.”

Shawn and I looked around the room at the other children’s one lined robotic reading stories with their accompanied super cutesyย  illustrated rainbow-coloured-glitter-speckled monsters.

“Shit.”

“I mean, we will talk to him.”

His teacher him re-write a different story – one that was “very super stupid” very cute. You could tell by the angry pencil strokes that our son hated every word of it.

That night we told Chunky Monkey that we read his original monster piece. He immediately apologized for writing something “wrong”.

“Why are you sorry?! It was fantastic! Keep writing just like that.”

And he smirked, “Really?”

“Maybe a little less scary for your Catholic teacher.”

At home, we allow him to bleed his thoughts and feelings as words on the pages.

We encourage it.

Sometimes he reads them out loud to us or sometimes he tucks them far behind his dresser.

I love this side of him and not just because I write.

I love this because writing is a fantastic outlet for anyone and you don’t have to be good at it.

Just write.

“Mom today I wrote about what made me happy and I liked that my socks didn’t bunch up in my shoes while I was at school.”

Then he climbed up to me, pulled my blanked back, and I shimmed over.

“When I grow up, I want to be a hockey player, a scientist, a teacher and I am going to write about my life. Are those good jobs Momma?”

“Those sound like wonderful things buddy. Will you still visit me when you’re old and super cool?”

“Yeeeessssss Mom! I’ll even buy you a coffee and a sprinkle donut.”

 

And dear teachers out there, if you have a child like mine who thinks out of the box, please don’t put the lid on their imagination.

These children are the dreamers, the movers and the shakers.

Be apart of something exciting and encourage these minds to grow and thrive .

 

Do your children write in journals or diaries?

Do you write in a journal?

23 Comments

  1. This right here; “These children are the dreamers, the movers and the shakers.

    Be apart of something exciting and encourage these minds to grow and thrive .”

    is absolutely beautiful and exemplifies so much goodness! Thank you. (*Also, HI! So fun to “see” you again!!)

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      Well hello gorgeous ๐Ÿ™‚
      They really are. My kid is not an inside the box thinker and I wish that people would stop trying to squeeze him into one. He’s Chunky Monkey ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Wow! Amazing little man you have there. You are good parents for encouraging his imagination and allowing him to be himself.
    Awesome job Mama!!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      Thank you so much Kim xo

  3. I love that you encourage his imagination and I love how vivid his storytelling is at such a young age! It’s a shame his teacher isn’t recognizing that, but the most important thing is that it’s being supported in the home and that he knows those thoughts and stories aren’t wrong ๐Ÿ™‚

    What a magical sweet mind he has… and he’s going to bring you coffee and sprinkle donuts in old age. I mean, really!!! *SNIFFS* so sweet.

    XOXO

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      I need to get the donut and coffee in writing. I am just kidding. I always take him out for a donut if I have to drag him out for errands. We told him that whatever he wants to do in life, that we would support him. Teachers are really driving me bananas I tell you. Big bag of dicks for all of them at my child’s school…
      xoxo

  4. I love that you are encouraging him to be himself and express his creativity any way he wants! I wish that his teacher was a little more open, but I’m glad he has support at home! And I love that he wants to bring you donuts and coffee, that definitely made me tear up. I sure hope my son will do that too! <3 <3

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      The donuts and coffee get me every time. I always take him out for a donut if I have to drag him out grocery shopping or to appointments ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. I guess I can see why the teacher had him write something different if it was going on the wall, but my first reaction was, darn teacher, let the kid have personality and imagination.

    I do not journal, except I guess my blog. My husband says it is just a journal on-line. That kind of makes me mad, but whatever. I’d love to see my girls write. I just added creative writing to our school subjects. I love you…my kids might be unsure when they see that subject added, but I LOVE YOU!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      She could have approached it differently in my opinion. Like instead of making him feel like his story was disturbing, help edit it with him.
      Husbands or people in general who don’t blog don’t get blogging – PFT with a side of giant EYE ROLL
      Love you too

  6. Scarlet definitely writes in a journal. I always did too.
    When I was in 5th grade I wrote a story about a man in the moon who literally moons people. My teachers told the other teachers and it raised eyebrows but my English teacher said to me, “I get you. You write weird and sad things, so that you don’t have to be weird and sad all the time. I dig that. I hope you grow up to be a writer.”

    I did!

  7. Love that your boy is writing and taking after his mama! ๐Ÿ™‚ Don’t love how the teacher handled his story, but it’s great you can help him navigate her reaction. โค

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      We didn’t love her reaction either. She could have helped him edit the story perhaps instead of re-writing the entire thing. She made him feel like what he did was wrong and that it wasn’t good enough. That seems to be the theme of the year “I am not good enough” – and that breaks me into pieces. We have to keep reassuring him that the things he does at school is more than good enough but when his teacher makes him re-write it because she feels that it’s unacceptable or disturbing….ugh…It’s hard.

  8. I love this! I used to write in a journal all the time, but not in awhile. I’m glad that you encourage your son to be creative though and his story sounds AWESOME.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      It really was an awesome story. He takes out his journal at night and he scribbles away for a few minutes or so. It’s a great outlet for him!

  9. Aww your son sounds awesome! I am so happy that he is finding his own creative outlets. It is so important to let him do his thing. It’s so sad that teachers get so panties in a bunch when kids do different kids than others.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      I’m so glad that he has an outlet too!
      All kids need something to pour their feelings into.

  10. I love this! He sounds like such a creative and awesome writer…and son! My son just got a journal, and I’m excited for the stories he will write too. Right now, he’s just drawing some awesome pictures.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      That’s fantastic! It’s fun seeing what they come up with. We let him have his privacy and don’t ask him what he’s writing. Most of the time though, he will be too excited and he’ll share what he’s wrote. He does have a stash of pages though that’s hidden – probably about the times I made him eat all the vegetables ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. It is wonderful that you encourage that imagination of his! It’s a shame that his teacher made him re-write that story. I’m so glad you were able to encourage him not to squash his creative side just because of one teacher!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      I love his wild brain. His school has been a problem for the last 2 years but we are working hard on building his confidence again. Sometimes I don’t think that teachers realize the impact the have on these little minds.

  12. Now it’s my turn to get choked up, Kim (Bish)! Yes, let his imagination run wild. What is with these teachers? Why does everything have to be rainbow and sprinkles? You and Shaun are amazing parents! I love that he journals with you, Kim. That is so sweet and therapeutic, too. Love this!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      My child is a “red flag” student because of what happened last year.
      For the most part, his teacher is really good but if he goes out of box, he will know it. It’s hard to explain to him why this is happening – why he’s the problem.
      Let me tell you though, his teacher….it’s all in his journals ๐Ÿ˜‰

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