Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

How To Get Boys To The Writing Table In Free Play


Guest
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi to all.

I am an NQT and have been struggling for the past term to try to get boys to access the writing area during child initiated play times.

I would be really greatfull of any ideas and suggestions. i must be blinkered in my ideas as it is always girls who head for the table whatever i put out.

i am desperate for advise as i feel im letting my boys down. especially as some of them would go the whole day without putting pen to paper if it wasnt for whole class sessions when i will encourage them to the front to help me have a go at writing.

 

yours desperately julie :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What is your writing table?

 

We had this problem a while back and we really had to rethink the scenarios that we had for children.

 

i.e. builders activities- childrne will write down if they are measuring etc for building work.

my boys at present love addressing envelopes and putitng stamps on them- they really only want the stamps but they know we have to address them first!!!!

our Nursery boys last year loved to write to Dily the dinosaur

they also loved writing in the archalogical dig.

 

my mind has gone very blank and i have a cold but that kind of thing

 

look at some of the rolep play packs in sparkle box and that kind of gives you ideas on how to pitch it to the boys for the writing side of things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am preschool but recognise your dilemma.

 

Only this week boys accessed our 'play office' because we 'pretended' it was Bob the Builders booking office, telephone and pads.

 

I also noticed 2 boys last week accessing the 'office' area, they normally play at super heroes :o , on closer observation they both had old mobile phones and were talking to each other ( sitting next to , but facing away from each other) on the lines of

"I'll get my laser."

" you can't shoot me now"

"aaah, I'm losing power, quick, get the power"

 

I sat next to them and drew their comments, like a comic sequence, with key words. This encouraged them to continue talking their story.

 

Although pre-writing, this grabbed their attention and it progressed to them drawing a map of where to get the 'power' from, ( with some support). They drew arrows on the map and a sign for power. "P" within a big circle. :D We then went on to follow the map ( based on the room) and find the Power ( a green bead) :D

 

Following on from this we have started to collect more comics for the 'library'

 

Maybe some comic words and phrases ie: POW, WOOSH, BOOM etc with all the graphics may catch your boys interests.

 

Peggy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive found clipboards very successful but perhaps you need to leave them to it a bit more!?

I notice you enquire about CI time and yet you say they do not seem interested in what you put out?

Can you organise an area where resources are freely available and leave them to it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

wow thanks for your fast responses and some good ideas.

 

I do have out sand trays builder spots etc with foam paint water and brushes etc for writing and i do use clipboards:) children do enjoy and use them.

i think my real concern is a core handfull of boys who spend the day dressed up and charging around trying to shoot or karate chop each other if allowed and i am really struggling to get them to focus on anything else.

these are the boys that never access any items i put into the room except for construction and they usually try to make guns with these. grrrrr.

 

i feel totally useless in the classroom when im trying to work with a focus group and they start to behave like this. i spend hours making resources and trying to set up different areas of interest every day to no avail. Should i even be teaching?????

 

will try some of these ideas and hope that my hormonal depressed state passes thanks everyone for your help:)

julie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please dont put yourself down julie it sounds like you are a thoughtful and highly experienced teacher.

Boys will be boys and this will always be a problem in all settings.

I work in a pre-school so the ratio is much higher as i find an adult is needed to steer it away from fighting or just having an adult there to encourage recording/mark making etc

We find space rocket role play,or restuarant,garage a good way to entice the boys.

Also we had 'boys' notepaper on the writing table that went down a treat and stickers to stick on the envelopes.

Will keep thinking :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds like you're doing all the right things, so I'm probably repeating what you already do,

'you can take a horse to water.......'

I work in a pdn, but how about trying to provide lots of opportunities for them to 'make notes', record and make marks for a 'meaningful purpose' outside - possibly set up a 'builders yard'/shop', using your clip boards for them to record measurements, label items for sale. Self carbonating receipt books to record what they've sold. Record how many aeroplanes fly overhead, in which direction, where do they think they are flying to. Perhaps buying a selection of 'super hero' type pens/pencils might encourage their use?

Boys often like larger scale mark making and your foam painting sounds great using painters large brushes, perhaps if you have an area of mud (or put mud/clay in your builders tray) they could 'write' using sticks in the mud (boys always seem to like sticks!) They might like to make maps - buried treasure maps, maps of their classroom, the route to their favourite area etc.

 

Good luck .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think various people have observed that boys prefer to write either on the floor or standing up, and more next to each other rather than opposite (think of men in the pub tend to stand at the bar). We are currently looking at getting writing ledges and we also provide big sheets of paper and markers on the floor and its always the boys that make a beeline.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive found clipboards very successful but perhaps you need to leave them to it a bit more!?

I notice you enquire about CI time and yet you say they do not seem interested in what you put out?

Can you organise an area where resources are freely available and leave them to it?

 

I think this is a very good point giving boys ownership of the activity appeals to them (sometimes we put so much effort into things that they become too 'adult' if you know what I mean :o ) also as Mundia says dont confine writing to the writing table our boys especially love writing outdoors or in the construction area (instructions for other people to build things) We also put those cheap reporter type spiral jotters in all areas which they love to carry around with them making 'notes'

Link to comment
Share on other sites

all good points... yeah being a male... I had the reverse of this problem this year as my classroom unwittingly was set up more to encourage boys writing than girls :o:D

 

... anyhow... I always think rather than trying to encourage the boys to the writing table... make sure there's writing materials situated where they prefer to play i.e. the sand and the water... the outdoors... gravel pit... car mats and garage... then the writing can be linked more to their play and be more incidental rather than planned...

 

... outside on the bikes we had boys being traffic warden dishing out speeding tickets and 'running' carparks etc... all the time they we jotting notes on paper on clipboards...

 

... another one they loved was to have comic strips with the pictures left in, but the speech bubbles blanked out for them fill in themselves... I had the original comic strips displayed to for them to see if they wished...

 

.. i've got a cool picture I'll try and dig out and add later on... I'm off to the cinema so I'll check back later

 

Porl

 

here's the link to the pic I've uploaded... I just love the expression on the face of the boy on the bike, having just been giving two speeding tickets! ha

Edited by Guest
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Things that work for my boys - spiral bound books (as already suggested), paper and pens next to the construction/small role play - have had plans drawn, maps and road signs made, ponds etc, Post it notes (VERY popular!), envelopes and paper, cards for making up.

Also very popular are the small whiteboards and marker pens or small chalkboards and chalk.- again in any area of the classroom.

At the moment mine are into taking telephone messages in the health centre and one boy constantly has a pencil behind his ear and a spiral bound book in his hand!

Something I have done before is put a 'closed' sign on a particular area of the classroom (e.g. construction) for a while so they HAVE to go and find something else to play with.

We have a huge chalkboard on the fence outside and I find it is the boys who make most use of this.

 

As well as modelling the writing oppportunities yourself have a splurge on really making an over the top, loud example of those children who DO use them - usually works wonders in my place!

 

Megsmum

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Great picture - clipboards have been incredibly successful with boys in our class they walk around with them writing and will only do a fcus writing activity if they can use a clipboard!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)