Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Best Homeschool Lessons: Short Story Solidarity

Sometimes, despite the Ritalin, Eric has trouble concentrating. Especially on a non-preferred activity, like writing. (I call him my bi-polar attention boy.)

On such occasions, I have discovered it can be helpful to foster a bit of competition. If we both do the math problems and compare notes, there's a chance he'll have a better solution than mine.

Last week, I extended this principle to a writing assignment. I suggested fun prompts such as "Write a silly version of a scripture story from the perspective of our stuffed animals. Like Veggie Tales with our own cast."

None of my suggestions interested Eric, but he eventually chose one from a book of journal prompts: "Write a short story that ends with the line 'From now on, I'm keeping that door locked.' "

As motivation, I suggested we could have a competition.

"Who would judge it?" Eric asked, suspiciously.

"Well," I said, "We could post them on my blog, like the yearly cake contest, and solicit comments."

"Yes," Eric answered. "I like that idea. Only we should not put our names on them so that my Grandmas will not be influenced."

Accordingly, I have now posted both stories, without attribution or titles. I don't really expect votes, but we welcome comments!

And, a final note: neither story is Great Literature, but Eric did succeed in finishing a short work of fiction. Yay!

P.S. Any similarity between these highly fictional characters, and any real person, living or dead, is purely a function of your own tortured imagination.


Gregory said...

Can we guess as to who wrote which story?

Gail said...

Greg -- feel free. In fact, if you can't guess, I'll...do something drastic. Eat my toner cartridge? Swear off Plants vs. Zombies for a week?

Anyway, it should be pretty obvious. I went through the Correct Forms of Submitting Anonymously, though, to appease Mr. Aspie Eric.

Gregory said...

ONE cannot help but notice a bit of 'bi-polar attention' within the stories but it is all TWO evident that English majors just cannot help themselves from eloquent flourish.

Krenn said...

Yeah. with high doses of ADHD medicine, I HAVE to concentrate on SOMETHING, but it doesn't really matter what. forcing myself to focus on something i don't want to when there's something fare more interesting next to it doesn't really work.

And it still doesn't help with purely boring situations where there's NOTHING to concentrate on.

Jon said...

Why don't you ever post your math problem notes?