This was also how my passion for the written word started - I realized how well I could express myself and how I enjoyed crafting with words. Since then I went on to write many short stories (in Portuguese, published in a collection), blog posts, a novella and a book.
That was journaling in the most popular sense of the word.
Now throughout my teaching practice I've discovered that children can journal too - in many different ways! And what they have to gain from it is just as rich:
- They can learn to sit with their emotions, think about and express them.
- They can follow an interest, have a hobby and enjoy recording it.
- They can become more fluent, confident writers.
- They can become better communicators.
- They can learn that writing doesn’t have to be a chore, that it can be cozy and creative.
- And they can see how powerful a tool the written word can be.
In a multilingual home, journaling can be a compelling and effective way to make writing a habit and to support literacy in your family languages. Good reading and writing skills are a sum of consistent, small, daily efforts. So if literacy in the minority language is one of your goals, you will need to be persistent, patient and have a variety of activities under your sleeve.
If you'd like to DIY, here are some prompts you can translate to your language(s) and adapt to your family. You can write them on strips of paper and put them in a jar, box or tin; you can print them and glue them on popsicle sticks; you can make a little booklet and gift it this holiday season!
52 Journal Prompts for Kids to Record Their Lives and Thoughts
300 Creative Writing Prompts for Kids
(If you search for 'Journal Prompts for Kids' in your language you will find lots of great ideas!)
I have also researched and selected a few journals for your inspiration. Some are available in different languages, others aren't. I would love to know if you have a recommendation of a journal in your language!
A Pandemic Journal: Free Printable in Multiple Languages
The Happy Self Journal (English, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Dutch, German, French, Italian)
Big Life Journals
I Love the Earth: A Journal for Celebrating and Protecting our Planet
I Love Science: A Journal for Self-Discovery and Big Ideas
Journals by Wee Society
Me and My Big Move
Over Ons, Van Ons (Dutch)
Journaling is one of the tips for Writing Motivation you can find in The Toolbox for Multilingual Families. Add this book to your multilingual parenting arsenal!
Happy Writing! :)