Many of us grew up with the familiar fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood and the cast of characters: Grandma, The Woodsman and the Big Bad Wolf. This story has been told and retold in many differing versions since before the 17th century. But what if Red Riding Hood was a pencil named Little Red who attends Pencilvania School and the new cast of characters are Principal Granny, Mr. Woodcutter, the janitor and the Wolf 3000 (a ferocious electric pencil sharpener)!
This is the premise behind the charming and beautifully illustrated children's picture book Little Red Writing, authored by Joan Holub and illustrated by Melissa Sweet.
The story starts out with Ms. 2, the teacher, giving all of the different pencils an assignment. They will all write a story. And what happens next is a lovely way to teach children what a story is and how a story develops as Little Red takes her 15 red words in her basket and begins her journey.
Along the way Little Red learns all about what makes a story. She is introduced to action, adjectives, editing, sticking to the story, adverbs, conjunctions, run on sentences, punctuation, sentence structure and being brave when writing.
If you're a fan of anthropomorphic characters you'll find not only pencils but glue, staplers, tape, pencil sharpeners and more ! I loved the colorful and collage inspired illustrations and the abundance of puns. Just one example, one pencil is driving the adverb truck filled with adverbs of course, on the side of the truck, Adverbs "We Deliver Speedily."
I think this is a book that will grow with your young child. They will surely love the fairy tale told with a modern twist and as they get older there are a lot of writing concepts and vocabulary words to learn and explore. This could just be the inspiration your child needs to get excited about writing and telling a story.
Teaching Story to Children
I fell in love with books early on and I was writing stories as soon as I learned how to write. If your children are just starting to learn how to put together a story there are several children's books that will help them understand beginning creative writing concepts and story elements like characters, setting and plot and what makes a story as well as parts of speech. The Plot Chickens illustrates simplistically the process of writing a book, submitting it to publishers and for this chicken rejection. It would be a great starting off place to introduce children to the concept of publishing and what makes a good story.