The Magic Pencil Review
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The Magic Pencil: Teaching Children Creative Writing is full of ideas for getting children to write. Itís split up into two sections: Learning Through Play with Language and A Focus on Skills. Most activities can be adapted for children of all ages. They can also be used with one child or a whole group of children.

The first section has plenty of activities that will help children learn how to put words on paper. It suggests everything from turning a full-length drawing of the child into a story about his or herself, to writing the diary of an imaginary person, to turning a poem into a story.

Part two focuses on skill-building exercises to further develop the childís writing. It has activities involving similes and metaphors, correcting errors, vocabulary building, research, and brainstorming. The activities switch back and forth between academic and creative writing because the author believes that you need to develop both in order to write effectively.

Some of the activities require preparation on the parent or teacherís part, including obtaining supplies or resources. Some activities also build on other activities already completed, so the only drawback is that you canít just flip to a page and try the activity.

Although this book was written for parents and teachers to use with children, I also found it to be a good resource for me. Trying some of the activities opened up my own creativity. So whether itís for yourself, your child, or a group of children, this book is a great resource for writing at any age.

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