Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sam the Author

Yesterday Sam asked if he could publish a book. I said of course! I've been waiting and waiting for my 6 yr. old son to show any interest in reading or writing of any kind. This seemed to be an interest. I sat at the computer and Sam dictated a story to me. ( I found it very difficult to not edit his words or sentence structure but I stayed true to his words.) He broke it down into chapters, drew pictures to go with each chapter and was very specific about titles of chapters, names of characters etc. It was a great experience. We then printed it out and put it in book form. He's asked his sisters, dad and me to read it to him several times since yesterday morning.

This morning Sam woke up early. He was ready to publish book 2 in his series. We just finished. He was better organized this morning. He would draw a picture for a chapter before we went on and label it with the corresponding chapter number so there would be no confusion later in assembling the book. I was very impressed with his use of appropriate, descriptive language. I can't share that with him so I'm sharing it here.

His books are about war; the China War to be specific. It begins in 2009. Here is a snippet from book 1 (5 chapters) and book 2 (6 chapters). Keep in mind that Sam does not read. We read aloud ALOT in this house and watch great history channel shows and documentaries and lots of other stuff that is just plain entertaining.
Book 1 The China War
Chapter 1
Ready for Battle

It all started when we were in Germany. While fighting the Germans a new Air Force arrived in the skies. It was China! We were surprised and shocked by the attack coming from the air. The Chinese attack was vicious and they were after our leader, Sergeant Daniel.

Daniel barely avoided destruction by jumping out of his airplane using his trusty parachute. Co-Captain Jackie also jumped to safety. Once on the ground they avoided capture by Chinese officers. They got low in the grass. They were quick to shoot and quickly ran to the woods to find cover.

Once in the woods, Daniel and Jackie called base camp. Their instructions were to sit tight! And stay put! A rescue team was on its way.

Two hours and twenty minutes later Daniel and Jackie could hear the thump, thwump, thump of the tank. With the tank came 20 men, including their long time friends, Jackson, Cody and Zack. They were rescued.
Book 2 The Revenge of China
Chapter 5
Support Arrives

We got help with 1,000,000 men. From the British we got 8080. We were ready to strike the enemy dead.

We charged the enemy with our bayonets. They were surprised and responded. Their 19 tanks fired. Our 18 tanks fired back. We destroyed them. We destroyed their hope.

We entered the enemy camp. It was surrounded by enemy soldiers. We weren’t afraid. We were going to take back our ground.

We lost 101 men. They lost 888 men. Finally, the Air Force came and bombed, bombed, bombed the enemy. We were winning!

Chapter 6
China Retreats Again

It was Friday. We won the war. We smashed our enemies. We crushed them with our heart. We fought with our bravery. Many comrades fell but we did win. I was happy about it all.

We were very sad we lost so many of our friends in the first war. We faced the consequences. We knew what would happen in the war. I lived in this war also. I stayed with the Air Force. My new friends and some of my old friends served with me in the Air Force. Some of my new friends served in the Navy. I love my friends. This was the day we fought together in bravery with all of our soldiers.

The End!
I think his use of descriptive words is quite amazing. The numbers he uses cracks me up. It shows his experience in the world of numbers and his age well.
This is a good day for us. I've had to be very patient with Sam and his interests and be okay letting go of 'traditional' learning. It has been hard every day to let him be. These last couple of days are a payoff for that patience. He is loving this. He is already thinking out the plot of book 3 in the continuing saga of The China War. I'm so pleased.

1 comment:

Kristin said...

You may be familiar with it, but there is a website started by some people in my parent's ward called Mighty Authors It's specifically designed for students to publish their own books.