Nucleus of Life Journaling
Nucleus of Life (NOL) is committed to exposing young children to Gospel realities (see http://www.nucleusoflife.com). I utilize any good picture bible book for little ones to introduce them to the Gospel stories. The steps in the process are as follows:
1) Purchase some journal writing paper where there is space to draw a picture and lines for writing beneath it. I purchased Draw and Write Journals from http://www.lakeshorelearning.com/ item #RR630.
2) Read a Gospel story and afterwards, ask your preschooler what they would like to tell others about the story. If this is done repeatedly for each Gospel story you read, your child will begin to form their own good sentences. At first, mom may have to guide the child a little by asking questions like:
- Who are the characters in this story, or
- What happened in this story, or
- If a good friend asked you about this story - what would you tell them?
Mom should begin to pick out Subject Nouns and Verbs their preschooler can use in their sentences.
3) I then have my older daughter or myself draw a picture about the story using shapes. My preschooler colors the picture with minimal help from us. That is because he is slower at drawing than writing his letters. The more we draw pictures for him as he watches us, the better he will become at drawing himself. As we draw, we discuss the shapes we are using at the time. I used this approach with my older children and it worked very well. By the time they were in fourth grade, they were sketching their own pictures from various art books and drawing themselves in their journals without any help by first grade.
4) Next, use letter tiles to build your sentence. I purchased Teaching Tiles Learning System by http://www.educationalinsights.com/. Every small child loves to build. If your preschooler learns that words are built one letter at a time, they master the discipline of taking the time to think about what they need to write. In preschool, we can sound out the letter before it is shown to the child so they have to guess the correct letter before it is put on the display. As time progresses, new phonics rules are applied to more complicated sounds and digraphs. For example, my four year old knows what the silent E does now. He is now starting to read short simple sentences and stories.
5) After building with your Teaching Tiles, your preschooler copies the sentence you created on the display to the journal writing lines under your picture. Once again, letter sounds are spoken out loud so the child is continuously reinforced with proper pronunciation and spelling. If you can not afford the Teaching Tiles, this approach is still appropriate by writing out sentences and having your child 'fill in the blanks.' Be sure to have them copy over the entire sentence themselves into their journal though. This keeps their journal as a precious keepsake of their own work.
6) Please see this link to view pictures of my four year olds work in progress. Notice in the pictures that we are making 'sounds' with the letters we use to make words and form our sentences. I also had to guide Patrick on how to form some letters by having him 'follow my finger.' Now he can form all his letters by himself. http://ordainedpraise-homeschoolmom.blogspot.com/search/label/NOL-Patrick%27s%20Progress
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
This was also an entry made at the beginning of our journaling. Sometimes, Patrick is too tired to finish coloring. Some days it is easier to work harder than others at this age. Mom has to read the cues from their little ones.
If you would like to enter your child's work for the "Cure of a Cripple" enter with Mr. Linky here:
This was also one of Patrick's beginning journal entries. Here you can see the letter tiles are placed right above his paper so he can easily refer to it while he is writing. We often sound out letters - not only when we build with letter tiles - but when we write occasionally too.
If you would like to enter your child's work for "The Visitation" enter with Mr. Linky here:
Yes, Martha was kind to serve others but it was Mary that chose the better part. This is what Patrick wanted to write. Patrick knows that all names begin with a capital letter.
If you would like to enter your child's work for "Mary and Martha" enter with Mr. Linky here:
Patrick's little hand was hurting again. Maybe some day he won't have to use all the colors and press so hard. Therefore, we colored one tree for him. Can you guess which one? Yep - that's it - the natural looking one.
If you would like to share your child's work for "The Good Samaritan" enter with Mr. Linky here:
This was one of the first entries Patrick made. Therefore, you do not see the elaborate coloring yet. These journal entries are not posted in order but were all made in 2010/2011. These posts will eventually be in alphabetical order.
If you would like to share your child's work for "The Annunciation" enter with Mr. Linky here:
Patrick gets so involved in using so many colors that his little hand starts to hurt. Therefore, we colored Jesus and the sky to encourage him to color more of it.
If you would like to share your child's work for "The Transfiguration" enter with Mr. Linky here:
My four year old said, "Jesus stopped the storm." Then I added "sooo." He then finished this sentence on his own.
If you would like to share your child's work for "Calming of the Storm" please enter with Mr. Linky here:
Yes, my four year old chose the word 'MESSIAH!' I asked him, "What did Jesus tell the Samaritan woman?" He replied, "That he was the Messiah." We used it! Key point in the story. I was so happy!
If you would like to share your child's work for "The Samaritan Woman" please enter with Mr. Linky here:
The name 'Jesus' is used often as the subject of the sentence. He is learning that a subject noun can be a person. Later, he will learn that a noun can also be a place or thing. I constantly ask him who the main characters are in the story. I always talk about the story in my own words after we read it together. Sometimes he incorporates part of what I say into his sentence. Not always. Nevertheless, it helps him come up with an idea.
If you would like to share your child's work for "Jesus Walks on Water" please enter with Mr. Linky here:
If you would like to share your child's work for "Feeding the 5000" please enter with Mr. Linky here: