June 17, 2024

Writing with Middle Schoolers: My 52 Lists Project

I was provided a copy of this product specifically for review purposes as a member of the Timberdoodle Blog Team. As always, all opinions are my own.

I’ve been homeschooling my kids for nearly 8 years now, and one thing that has been glaringly obvious the duration of that time is that getting kids to write is difficult. They are full of excuses and super hesitant most of the time.


More and more (and I hate to admit this) I think it has something to do with those pesky iPads and tablets we shove in their faces. I’d like to think that we do a pretty good job of limiting screen time, but I’ll be the first to confess, we certainly aren’t perfect when it comes to screen use and video games. Constantly having some sort of technology available can truly limit one’s chance for keeping a journal or drawing. Yes, I realize you can in fact journal and draw on a tablet, but there really is something to those formative years and just picking up a pencil.

You know those things right? An actual, physical #2 that you have to sharpen with (gasp) a pencil sharpener of some sort. (For the record, I am a member of team Ticonderoga.)

I decided that this year, as my oldest starts his middle school years, that I really need to help him find a way to enjoy writing. He’s got such a creative little mind, and I know that if given the chance and perhaps a few nudges, he could absolute crush this whole writing thing, become a published author, and make millions!

Well, at minimum, he can at least learn to form a well-written, grammatically correct paragraph and update his YouTube or Instagram bio. Am I right?

When I saw My 52 Lists Project I 100% knew that THIS was something he not only would and could do, but he would enjoy it. Who doesn’t like making a list?! (Maybe that’s the Type A in me talking.) Not having to worry about proper grammar and spelling and correct sentence formation would most definitely take the stress out of writing for him. I knew it would for me at that age. Heck, it would at age 38 as well. {Do they make one of these for adults? Because sign me up.}

Creating lists that he could later use to develop essays and stories seems like the absolute perfect way to record his own thoughts and ideas without having the pressure of producing perfect paragraphs and fine works of literature. The beautiful thing about the prompts is they serve as the backbone to all those wonderful stories he doesn’t even realize he’s got tucked away in his mind. When HE is ready to write, he can use a list as a starting point for a well crafted story or essay.

The prompts are FUN and relevant. They serve as excellent conversation starters as we begin our school day. Early on when we began to use the journal, I found myself eager to ask my two younger children what would be on their lists as well.

My 52 Lists Project: Journaling Inspiration for Kids is available at Timberdoodle now. If you’re in the market for the entire 2022 6th grade curriculum kit, it’s included there as well. If you’re smack in the middle of all your new curriculum picks and don’t need a kit at this time, I highly recommend grabbing an individual copy. It would be a really great addition to your homeschool days. And because I’m always on the hunt for unique gifts, I think this is a great gift idea as well. Grab a few copies and give them as birthday or Christmas gifts with a set of fun pens. The kid in your life will definitely appreciate the gesture once they dive in!

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