Monday, February 13, 2012

A Dollar's worth of Stories

Jenna does like to fold laundry, do dishes, sweep, mop.  She even likes to clean the bathtub and scrub the toilet.  But it is ever so painful to get her to clean up after herself – usually when her stuff is scattered all over the living room or her own bedroom.  That is the worst. 

I just don’t know what incentive to use to get her motivated.  I’ve tried everything – rewards when she does it, removing items when she doesn’t. We honestly have more of her belongings out in the shed than we do in her room.
Getting her to practice her handwriting has been a big chore as well.  She’ll draw, read, study, tell stories and play learning games.  But getting her to write anything (or print in her case) is on ongoing battle.

She is competitive.  When the school was invited to participate in a handwriting contest, she came home all excited – and I thought “great – incentive” I’m afraid it didn’t last.  It was still a huge struggle.

But this weekend she asked, “Mom, what can I do to earn money?”

She had recently told me a story that I had asked her to write down.  I told her that I would pay her a quarter for each story she could write.  It has to be written.  Yes, you can draw a picture to go WITH the story but not in place of. It was still a struggle.  But finally she gave in.

I have corrected her spelling and inserted missing words [in brackets] and added punctuation.  But here’s what we have so far (minus the story I am still waiting for her to put on paper)


Once upon a time dinosaurs roamed the earth.  One dinosaur loved to play.  His name was Ale.  Ale also loved to explore and one day he got into a fight with his best friend.  But they got along and since then scientists thought dinosaurs were mean.  But they’re not.


          Once upon a time there lived a king.  He was worried about his daughter, Anastasia (but everyone called her Ana) and she had a huge imagination and it continued to grow.  The king was worried because she had to marry soon but she did not know who to choose.
And the queen, well she was not worried.  She was fine.  So they had a ball and she chose her groom and they got married and . . .
Ten years later a daughter was born and they lived happily ever after.


          Once upon a time in a [small town] there lived pleasant folks who used positive words.  Then one [day] a stranger walked in and he used negative words.  The sheriff and the stranger had a conflict.  If the stranger won then he would have the sheriff’s star.  If the sheriff won, the stranger would have to leave town.  Fortunately the sheriff won.  But then the stranger said a positive word and all was peaceful.


          Once upon a time a girl went to mars and met some aliens.  And they treated her like a queen.  All was pleasant until one afternoon* a robot marched in and [said], “I’m hungry.  Feed me.” 
          The queen was startled and made the aliens get food.  He kept* on coming.
One day the queen said, “Why don’t you stay with us instead of making all those trips?”
And since then all was peaceful on Mars.

*original words: p.m. and keeped.  She chose p.m. as it was easier to spell.

 As a bonus, she wrote a poem inside her drawing of a mountain:

A mighty
Girl climed up
A mighty mountain
But she was [brave] and
Didn’t panic. She climbed the
Top.  Hooray! But up on top lived
A witch but she thought up a plan.
Hooray!  It worked.  The witch is dead
and the kids are back to normal

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