Writing at the Leonardo Museum in Salt Lake City
Hello friends! Did we miss you last month at The Leonardo Museum for our pop up event? We had great fun camping out underneath the big airplane in the World of Flight exhibit and hosting young writers in a hunt around the museum for new stories to tell. In case you're looking for a President's Day weekend adventure with your writers, you'll find the activity sheets we created RIGHT HERE so you can try it yourself!
Here are a few things we learned that day that might be helpful to you:
1. We pointed out that there are lots of ways to see a museum. Today was all about seeing with "writer's eyes."
2. It helped to put the activity sheets on clipboards so they could write from anywhere.The activity sheets have instructions on them, but writers did better with a coach pointing things out and even doing it with them. For example, "As I'm looking at the wall, I see the word 'turbulence.' I'm going to write that down because that might be a good word to add in my airplane story."
3. These activity sheets were effective pre-writing strategies for all ages from teens to 6 year olds. They just approached them in different ways. Every writer had their own "method." Some filled out the entire sheet--some, only a corner. The objective was finding a story they were interested in telling, so it didn't matter how much of it they completed.
4. The Aviator Wall on the west wall ended up being helpful for every story in helping writers find names for their characters. A number of times, writers got up mid story to consult the wall for a new name.
5. Some writers brought notebooks and some wrote their stories on three hole punched lined paper attached to the clipboard. For younger writers, we gave them paper with a space for drawing and encouraged three page beginning, middle and end stories. (That paper template is RIGHT HERE.)
6. There is a bright area next to the windows in the north-west corner of the World of Flight exhibit that can be a great writing area. When we were there, there were also tables set up outside the Curiosity Corner that can be a great writing space.
It really was a fun experience to spend the day in the Leonardo--and, frankly, we only scratched the surface. There's the whole upstairs and the Pompeii Exhibit to explore. Pompeii is a temporary, traveling exhibit and is an additional cost, but the crows assured us it was well worth it. Wouldn't it be a fun challenge to write a piece of historical fiction about the last days of Pompeii?
We feel lucky to get to collaborate with the you as you are raising your writers. We hope that these ideas might add a fun dimension to your family's life this weekend! Best, Carrie and Emily
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