Writing, whether with traditional pen and paper or typing on a device, can be an outlet for creativity and a way to connect with family or even strangers.

The Attic Institute Writing Prompt

Since we have been thrown into this new reality, The Attic Institute has been sending out weekly writing prompts.

One recent prompt, suitable for adults or children, makes the suggestion to “Take a walk around the block near your home or work and note the pieces of litter and discarded items you find along the way. Write a piece based on the items you see lying around.”

Consider making this a project for whoever you are living with or even extending the suggestion to other people that you communicate remotely with. Set an end time for everyone to have their piece done and then share what you’ve written.

Letter Exchange Project

Oregon Humanities has been facilitating the Dear Stranger Letter Exchange Project since 2014. The project seeks to connect Oregonians through the mail to share experiences, beliefs and ideas.

Due to the social distancing currently mandated, many people are looking for ways to create and maintain social connections. Now might be the perfect time to take part in the project.

The process is simple. Visit the Oregon Humanities’ website, oregonhumanities.org. Then read the instructions, access writing prompts and fill out the signed release form.

Write a letter, addressing it to “Dear Stranger” and submit it to Oregon Humanities along with the release form by Saturday, May 30. Youth 18 and under are welcome to participate with a release form signed by their parent or guardian.

Oregon Humanities will pair letters up randomly, ideally with a letter from a different ZIP code.

Documenting Family Memories

From the PBS Kids Daily Newsletter comes the idea to create “Our Family Memories.” It encourages the documentation of everyday moments, special activities and traditions using the headings “remember the day when we…”, “these are the things we like to do together” and “this is how our family celebrates…”

Younger children can participate by drawing pictures and older children/adults can write about family memories.

Keep these family memories or think about a family member that doesn’t live with you that might enjoy receiving them.