In my previous post I shared some practical ways to be your child’s narration scribe.
In this post I would like to give some tips on typing and printing out your child’s narrations.
Just Type it ~
- Sit at the computer, open a new Word page and start to type as they narrate.
- As. Is.
- Your aim to capture your child’s flow of thought.
- Don’t worry about any technicalities … yet.
- Resist the temptation to correct/ prompt/ re-word anything.
- Don’t worry about mistakes. (I almost never talk about grammar or language use while doing narrations.)
- If the child stalls or is taking too long to start, you could ask a simple question, “What is the most exciting part?” or “How did …?” or “If you look at the illustration tell me about the story …”
- Paragraph where necessary.
- When they have finished, add their story title, and under that, their name and the date.
- Read it back. If you read it as they dictated. If there is some issue such as each. and. every sentence starting, “And then …” “And then …” they will pick up the repetition and you can encourage them to leave out the “And then …” and start the sentence directly.
- Ask them if they would like to add, or change, or remove anything.
- If they are happy, save it.
Now for some computer stuff ~
- Once the narration is ‘captured’ save it. Create a folder for each child with their name. Add sub-folders for specific subjects in their folder, (e.g.: Nadene — History)
- Select the page layout ~ Portrait (standing up tall and narrow) or landscape (lying wide and flat)
- Enlarge the title and underline or bold it.
- Let them choose an interesting or suitable font and font color.
- Enlarge the font to about 26 (large) so that they can “read” their own narration once it is printed. Most young children merely ‘retell’ their original story, but this becomes an excellent early reading exercise!
- Insert photos, clipart or images into the narration where necessary.
- If the story is long enough, add page numbers.
- Print out the page. Punch holes and put it in a binder or cut it out and paste it in their jotter, or on the notebook page, or above or below their illustration.
Print the story out as a A5 booklet~
- Save the story.
- Now you will need to make a few layout changes to create a booklet:
- Select suitable sections (usually after each paragraph) and click ‘insert’ – select ‘page breaks‘ to separate the writing on to a new page. Now there will be a large blank space under the sentence/ paragraph for the child’s illustrations. I try to have an even number of pages, but this is not necessary.
- ‘Insert -page number’ – select ‘page number‘ and choose if you want the number at the top or bottom of the page, left, right or in the middle of each page.
- Select all and change to a large font size (about 22 – 26) because you will print 2 pages on a page and it will ‘shrink’ the writing
- Save the new layout.
Now to print ~
- Select ‘print’ and on the print page menu look for ‘print 1 page per sheet’ and change it to ‘print 2 pages per sheet‘.
- See how it looks on the ‘print preview’.
- Make sure that the font is large enough. If it is too small, cancel the print job and go back and select all and increase the font size.
- If you are satisfied – print it out.
- Fold the pages in half or cut them out to make a booklet. Staple.
- Let the child illustrate on the blank pages/ spaces.
- Ask the child to make and/or decorate a cover.
My children loved their own story books and proudly showed and ‘read’ their stories to family and friends!
How have you printed and saved your children’s narrations? Share with us in the comments.