I've spent the majority of the day getting LittleBee interested in writing. This is a task that I really feel like I am out of my depths. It all started with a little NAPLAN style exercise, so I can see if she is inline with what is expected of her at this level, considering all Year 3 students went through the NAPLAN testing last week. She breezed through two math "tests" but when it came to writing, she froze. Solid.
She begrudgingly read through the activity, we discussed and nutted out her arguments together and then she started writing.
And then she started crying when I told her that the things she had written had not persuaded me at all, she'd left out all her arguments, and to be fair, she might need to redo the exercise!
Oh boy! Tears, hugs and lots of reassurance that she CAN indeed do it...
But... "I hate persuasive writing. It's stupid"
The trouble is that she is ridiculously good at Math, and we have her doing a year level above where she is to make sure she is challenged with the work. LittleBee also simply devours her reading times every day and is reading and comprehending stories beyond her age. These are her strengths, and she loves to play to them indeed.
But thankfully with the help Google I was able to locate a persuasive text sample, and after lunch we started on this download from www.blake.com.au.
While she read, and studied, pouted a bit more, and got through the questions... I was able to sit close by and spend some time sewing (yay for me!) But the lights came on for her, one by one, illuminating in her mind what it was that she needed to be learning today. That was a remarkable moment!
An hour later it was all over with. Did I succeed in getting LittleBee to like writing today? Ah, that would be a loud NO! BUT, I did succeed in getting her to understand persuasive text a little better, so hopefully as we look at it further she might start to get a little more excited about the opportunity to make her opinions known.
What I also learned is that we need to focus more on writing, but how to do that without LittleBee screaming for the hills will be the real challenge.