Free Parent Involvement Activity – "Better Than…" – Grades 1-3

Expressing Ideas, Critical Thinking, Persuasion Skills, Sentence Structure

Debate Team — Ask your child for input as you select a topic of debate (speedboat vs. sailboat, cat vs. dog, pancakes vs. waffles, etc.) and let him choose which side of the “debate” he wants to take.

You and your child will each write down five points that support your individual position and then compare them. Talk about the relative merits of the written statements and decide whether or not either of you was able to sway the other’s opinion.

Some examples of arguments to use in a debate about speedboats vs. sailboats might include the following: “Seppedboats go fast.” “Sailboats are quiet and peaceful.” “Speedboats can pull a water skier.” “Sailboats don’t pollute.”

Braggart — In this game you and your child take turns one-upping each other with more and more far-fetching claims (going father, higher, faster, etc.)

You can begin by writing a statement such as, “I rode my bike to the middle of downtown!” Your child can counter with, “I rode my bike to Montana!” You might then boast, “I rode my bike across the Atlantic Ocean and back!” etc. Before long, one of you will be claiming to have ridden your bike around the universe while standing on your head with your eyes closed!

Source: Smart & Simple Writing Activities to do with your Child, Grades Kindergarten to 3rd Grade, Ages 5-9. Available at
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