If you have ever come across this beautiful book, “The Diary of a Young Girl” by Anne Frank, I’m sure even you wanted to write a diary. Moreover, if you are someone who gets new diaries every year, writes down new year’s resolutions and fail to write after that, then fret not. You are at the right place.
In this article, I am going to take you through the classic, widely accepted format of Diary Writing.
A diary entry is a very personal kind of writing where the writer writes about his/her feelings and records significant events of the day.
There is no set rule, but usually, a diary is written either at the end of the day, or the beginning of one. Writing a diary during sunrise will help you plan your day out and what you expect to do throughout your day.
Diary Writing Format
• Salutation ‘Dear Diary’
• Heading of the entry
• Contents of the diary entry
Here are a few ideas that you can write about in your diary
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
- Few things you would like to do more. Keep track of the progress.
- Write about your favorite book that influenced your life.
- Events of the week.
- Share your dreams and nightmares.
- Favorite fictional character you would like to meet or be some day.
- Your ways to relax.
- What makes you happy?
- Your list “Books-to-be-read” for the year. Share a little review after finishing.
- Write about someone you admire.
- Right now, what are your priorities?
- Jot down five weird things you like
- What do you regret not doing the most?
Why should I write a diary?
Many educationalists and teachers believe that although diary entries are quite personal, they help students in quite a few ways.
- They enable students to identify what problems they have, both intellectual and emotional,
- Describe how they address these problems,
- Consider whether their strategies work for them
- State why they work or don’t work.
A look at a few diaries can illustrate how diaries can illuminate the learning process.
Here is a short passage from a diary written by an American student studying Hebrew who
reports on the strategies she uses to study:
While driving in the car on a long trip, I repeated the past tense using the root I knew well and then began using other roots with which I wasn’t so familiar. It helped me get used to the sound
of those words. When I had a question about anything (i.e. the spelling of the root), I consulted
In this short passage, this student reveals five strategies (or ways) that she used to learn grammar
(a) she started with something familiar,
(b) she repeated the familiar root out loud,
(c) she tried to expand her knowledge by trying out less familiar roots,
(d) she asked for help when she needed clarification,
(e) she considered why the strategy worked for her ―It helped me get used to
the sound of those words.
What is missing in this excerpt is a discussion of whether there might be other strategies that work as well or better for her. By writing the diary, the learner can become aware of what she/he does, consider why it works or not, and then make that process available to a teacher or a peer for more suggestions.
In another diary, a learner reveals how her emotions interfere with her learning:
I need to find a better way to retain information that I receive orally. I don’t hear well, so I tend
to tune out often. To further the problem, once I get frustrated, I have gotten into the habit of
letting that take over; I tune out even more.
This learner is focusing on a problem she has–learning through oral presentations. She further
notes that she has not found a good solution and that her emotional reactions compound the
problem. In writing the diary, the learner can become aware of what is hampering her learning.
By sharing these problems with the teacher, the teacher can suggest possible solutions such as
other ways the learner can get the information besides orally or can help the learner address her
frustration and habit of tuning out by suggesting some relaxation or focusing techniques.