Our summer camps provide writers with a creative, enriching experience that allows them to explore their imaginations while also building confidence and developing literacy skills.
We spoke with Molly O’Brien, who is teaching Spinning Stories for rising 3rd & 4th graders (July 18 – 22, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Red Bank Borough Schools) to find out more about her and what to expect in this camp.
Read more about Spinning Stories here.
PWN: What is your favorite writing exercise or activity?
MOLLY: My favorite writing exercise is making a heart map! A heart map helps brainstorm ideas to write. You draw a heart on your paper and fill it with memories, people, places, foods, activities, or just about anything that you love. Then, when you need an idea to write about, you can look back on your heart map and it reminds you of so many memories.
PWN: What should campers expect from Spinning Stories?
MOLLY: Campers can expect to brainstorm events from their lives and ‘spin’ them into creative writing pieces. After we gather story ideas using a brainstorming strategy like the heart map, we can change a few details in the story to create something new. If we remember a great day at the beach where we went swimming in the ocean, we can change who we were with, the type of fish we saw, and even add new details about going scuba diving. This helps us bring a new story to life!
PWN: What is a story that you’ve written at any time in your life that you remember and love?
MOLLY: Since I was young, whenever I was on a trip, I wrote travel journals documenting my time in really cool places. It is so fun to read through them again and be transported back to those times. I had the chance to study abroad and live in Italy when I was in college. I kept a journal full of the places I went, the delicious pizza and gelato I ate, and the people I met. It is a great way to document your life. When you need inspiration for creative writing, looking through old journals can spark an idea for a new story.
PWN: Why do you write?
MOLLY: I write to look back on memories and moments and connect to how I was feeling at the time. I write to organize my thoughts. I write to share stories with others. I write to be transported to a new place. I write because it is so fun!