Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Spirituality and the Arts in Children's Programming: A Resource for Religious Educators

Basic exercise in writing from an image

Cut images from magazines (National Geographic is especially useful). Lay the images on a table. Have each child choose an image that calls to them. Then have the children sit with the images for a few minutes before writing about them. Ask the children why they chose their images, what they like about them, and what makes them curious about the images. Remind them to use their five senses to describe their images. Let them write for ten minutes.

Have the children read their work to themselves and underline key words or phrases or images in their own work then write these special words on another sheet of paper. The children should continue writing for about five minutes, then share their writing with a partner. Sometimes the children will write poetry or prose during this exercise.

Other images you may use for this exercise: a selection of postcards, images on a certain topic such as space or the earth to stimulate writing on a particular topic, a collection of images from a particular book, tarot cards or other sets of cards such as animals, nature images, or images from other religions.