Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Writing in a Daily Journal

Student writing on a braille writer

Daily journals are a wonderful way to encourage students to practice their literacy skills, no matter what level they are on or what format they use.  Journals can be audio, tactile, print, braille or some combination.  They can be used to reinforce basic information, such as practice writing one's name, the date, and days of the week.  They can be used to write about special activities at home or at school, or to record events in the daily routine, such as what was eaten at breakfast or lunch, what the weather is, what clothing one is wearing, who is present in the classroom, or anything of interest to the student.

Materials: 

  • braille writer
  • paper
  • pencil, pen, markers
  • objects or tactual symbols
  • digital recorder
  • book, metal rings or way to hold the journal together

* You will not need all of these, and materials should be selected depending on the needs and abilities of an individual student.

Procedure: 

1.  Create a template for students to follow each day.  A predictable routine is a helpful way for many to practice skills.  The template may include some of the following:

  • Name
  • Date
  • Day of the Week
  • Weather
  • What did you eat for breakfast?
  • What are you wearing?
  • What did you do last night?
  • What is on your schedule for today?

Writing prompts can be given, depending on the needs of specific children.

2.  Provide support as needed.

3. Encourage students to share their journals with others by reading aloud.  This can be done with other students, teachers and staff, or sending it home for the child to share with her family.

4. Create tactile illustrations, if desired and if time allows.

 

Variations: 

  • Have the students compile books each month.Cupcake journal
  • Have the students take turns reading each other's journals.
  • Choose a topic for a journal entry highlighting a special event.
  • After students have read their journal entries outloud, ask listening comprehension questions, e.g. "Who ate pizza last night?" or "Who went to a Red Sox game over the weekend?"

 

 

 


 

Core Standards

Writing: 

W.K.3  Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to narrate a single event or several loosely linked events, tell about the events in the order in which they occurred, and provide a reaction to what happened.
W.K.6 With guidance and support from adults, explore a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers.
W.1.3 Write narratives in which they recount two or more appropriately sequenced events, include some details regarding what happened, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide some sense of closure.
W.2.3 Write narratives in which they recount a well-elaborated event or short sequence of events, include details to describe actions, thoughts, and feelings, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide a sense of closure.
W.3.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.
W.3.3c Use temporal words and phrases to signal event order.

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