Scribble Story

We are in the midst of our biography projects in Written Communications. Neck deep. Our first research project is a little trying at times...

So to switch things up this week {and to be completely honest... for all parties involved...students, teachers, and paras to regain their sanity} We did "Squiggle Stories" as seen on What the Teacher Wants. With this burnt-out and weary bunch I wasn't sure what to expect, but these stories turned out GREAT!

We took the idea from this blog post, and tweaked it ever so slightly and it went over great. To start, I couldn't get the file to open. {Does anyone else have internet issues when your on a short notice, rushing around, or maybe just forget to print things off the day before?... Maybe not, but I sure do!} So I quickly took a screen shot of what they had and made it work. You can download (the much cuter original) here
Then, my wonderful teaching partner gets a BRILLIANT idea. {Brilliant in it's creativity, not only for the writing, but also a way to keep the kids engaged and make this activity last for a whole 55 minute period. It worked. So it's worthy of being called brilliant.} Have the students trade their stories and pictures every ten minutes, adding to what was written previously. Simple. It worked wonderfully.

Students had 10 minutes to make their squiggle into something. Anything, as long as it was appropriate for school... no blood, guts, gore, etc. This time included, if so chosen to add some color to the pictures. Then students were given 10 minutes to start their stories. When time was called they had to stop... adding nothing more. If your stopped midsentence you can't finish it. You pass your illustration and start of the story to the next person at your table, they pass theirs to the person next to you and so on. Then the same thing repeats, 10 minutes to write until time is called, until you get your story back. 

The stories were hilarious. Black holes. Magicians. Tornadoes. Pancakes. Clothing. Parrots. Evil trees. These were just a few of the topics that were woven into different stories, and although the stories didn't go exactly like the original author might have intended, all of the kids got a hoot out of what was created. This pass-and-go activity really kept the kids engaged, ideas flowing...more so than their worn out brains might have done if  they could only work on their story the whole hour. I wish I would have saved a few stories to share... but I did snap a few pictures of the kiddos illustrations. To think. They all started with a squiggle. 

A monster destroying a city.

A stylish shirt.

A hand band, not an ordinary head band, but a glow in the dark head band.  

In the student's own words: "This is a Jurassic scene" 

One of my favorites. A "rapping grandpa".  I loved how the student chose to do a side perspective. Blew me away. 

This project could take as little or as much time as you need, depending on how involved you would want it to be. The original post on this suggested this as an activity for substitutes. I'd have to agree, it'd work great for days like that. I think we will pull this out again another time or two throughout the year when we all need a break!


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