Journaling with Mom! A Gift for a Lifetime!
When I was seven years old, I wanted to create a book with Christmas cards. I had never made a book before. I loved the beauty of the holiday cards and I wanted to save them for future enjoyment. My mom suggested that I glue the Christmas card pictures in a book filled with blank pages. She would then help me write a Christmas story. This one shared bookmaking experience with my mom stayed with me for life. I soon ventured into jounaling and creating books of writing for school assignments. Later I discovered that I loved writing when taking my first English composition class in college. I created a career in writing training manuals for teachers on parenting topics and family literacy projects. Most recently, my passion for writing and self-discovery helped a group of parent and grandparent teachers create the www.GenParenting.com blog with parenting resources for all who love and care for children.
Journaling Dreams into Actions
I expanded these writing opportunities when my grandchildren asked me to journal with them about our New Year’s resolutions. Nathan wanted to improve his photography skills. Rosie wanted to expand her art experiences. I wanted to increase my writing and blogging website technology skills. This summer, we discussed our successes with each other on achieving our New Year’s resolutions.
We agreed that we have focused on self-growth through our hobbies. My grandson was given a very sophisticated camera that he is learning how to manually adjust to take more complex photos. My granddaughter has explored how to watercolor with overlapping forms and how to draw geometric shapes when using perspective. Rosie has created some very complex watercolor pictures and drawings. I have learned how to self-publish four books that include topics posted on the GenParenting.com website. These journaling experiences taught us that when we write down our aspirations, our ideas become imbedded in our minds. Our ability to embrace our thoughts and apply them into actions increase significantly!
Journaling Supports Thoughtful Conversations
The Beauty of Girls and Their Moms journal created by Tiffany Coleman at Kind Is Beautiful (see http://kindisbeautiful.com/moms-role-daughters-beauty) reminds me of the incredible bookmaking and journaling experiences I shared with my mom and grandchildren. The beautifully illustrated journal provides girls and their mothers the opportunity to discover and share what it really means to be beautiful. Topic explorations include discovering inner beauty, kindness, courage, and self-acceptance.
Typically, when we discuss topics with our daughters, we may only talk about what is currently on our minds. When we journal with our daughters, we are able to reflect our thoughts at a much deeper level and explore our dreams and hopes for the future. Once these thoughts are captured into words, we can reflect and discuss our dreams and thoughts more thoughtfully with our daughters.
Happy journaling in helping your daughters attain their inner beauty through life’s experiences!
Copyright (c) 2017 by GenParenting
Mary Ann Burke, Ed.D., Digital Education Expert, is a substitute distance learning teacher for Oak Grove School District in San Jose, California and the author of STUDENT-ENGAGED ASSESSMENT: Strategies to Empower All Learners (Rowman & Littlefield: 2020). Dr. Burke creates digital language arts and substitute teaching K – 12 activities for teachers and parents. She is the Cofounder of the Genparenting.com blog. Burke is the former Director II of Categorical & Special Projects for the Santa Clara County Office of Education that supports 31 school districts serving 272,321 students in Santa Clara County. She is also a previous Director – State & Federal Compliance for Oakland Unified School District, the former Director – Grantwriter for the Compton Unified School District, and was the initial VISTA Director for the Community Partnership Coalition in southern California. Much of her work focuses on creating innovative digital trainings and partnership programs for teachers and families to support students’ learning. These programs were featured as a best practice at a National Title I Conference, California’s Title I Conferences, AERA Conferences, an ASCD Conference, the NASSP Conference, and statewide educator conferences.