10 ways to improve your child’s writing

Posted on: 02/08/2013

Throughout my teaching career I have often been asked by parents how to help children develop their writing skills and below, in no particular order, are 10 suggestions:

1) Read – Through reading children develop their imagination by visualising the stories they read.

2) Read – Reading teaches children about problem solving, perseverance and morals.

3) Read – Children see words spelt correctly in books and can apply this knowledge to their own writing.

4) Read – Through stories children gain a greater understanding of the world around them.

5) Read – Reading helps children to build their vocabulary by experiencing words used in different situations.

6) Read – A whole world of information opens up once a child can read.  Reading allows them to explore their interests in more detail.

7) Read – Through reading children meet many different characters who can influence how they feel and act.  They can ‘make friends’ with the people in the story developing emotional links and genuinely caring what happens.

8) Read – Books set in the past allow children insight into how life has changed and allows them to appreciate how technology has influenced their lives.

9 )Read – Reading with your child creates a shared bonding experience and allows you to talk with your child about the book and how this relates to their own life.

10) Read – Reading encourages confidence and independence by allowing children to access this amazing world of words.  As they read they begin to ask questions and search for answers which then generates more questions and the cycle continues.  This quest for knowledge and new understanding is an ongoing and motivating journey.

Good writers draw on ideas they have read then mix these up to create their own unique story.  They understand how to use words effectively to create emotions and help their reader picture the scene.

If you want to help your child develop their writing (and reading) then encourage them to read for 10 – 20 minutes each night.  If they are reluctant to read then offer to share the reading with them by taking a page or paragraph each (depending on ability level).  Also encourage them to try a range of different books, some children will happily read non-fiction but not fiction and some like the comic book style.  As long as they are reading on a regular basis they get the benefit and once they find a book they enjoy look for more by that author or in a similar style.  Finally think about setting up a book exchange with some friends so your child has access to different books without constantly having to buy new ones.

Do you agree good readers make good writers?  What do you do to encourage your child to write?




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