Writing is an important part of our life and especially during our school and college years. Even though not all of us become writers, we all had to submit papers that were properly written in order to get a good grade. Sometimes, this could be quite overwhelming for kids, even for those who find writing interesting. Our job as parents and/or teachers is to teach children how to love writing and stimulate those who are fascinated with this. If you have noticed that your kids are scrabbling something every time they have a chance it is a good sign that it is time to teach them writing properly and love it.
How to achieve this? With three simple hacks – be a role model, challenge them or get a professional helper. The best – combine all of them and support your young writer on their journey to perfection.
Set the example
The best way to encourage your kids to write more is to give them personal example. If you model effective writing, then the children will follow you.
- Provide daily time for writing
Recent surveys reveal that unfortunately students don’t have sufficient time for writing at school. Therefore, you need to provide appropriate time for this activity at home. The time for writing practice shared with you, will make your kid feel more confident in their skills and abilities.
You can set the example of how to boost your writing skills by keeping a diary and sharing it with your child. You can decide whether you two will keep different diaries and read it to one another once a week or keep one diary and take turns to write each day or split the days of the week between you two.
Just remember that it is not necessary to be a writer yourself. Giving an example and showing support is of paramount importance to your little writer.
Make it challenging
Kids like to be challenged. They also like to be able to choose what to do. Therefore, if you would like to inspire them to write and love it, you should make it attractive for them. Give them a choice what to write about, what style to choose or how to write and they will feel much more inspired to proceed. Here are a few tricks how to do it:
- Teach them the purpose of each genre – to describe, to narrate, to inform, or to persuade/analyze, so that they can select the genre best suited to their writing tasks. Do this by giving age appropriate examples. You can find sample texts to read and then write a piece in each genre.;
- Daily challenge – you can turn writing into a game. If you have more than one kid the competition can be who writes faster – the one who is using the computer or the one who has to do it by hand. if it is only one child – set a time limit and see what can be written for say half an hour with the keyboard and what with the pen;
- Describe a job or service – set a task that each kid finds an interesting and not very popular job or service and make them research and describe it. For example – take the job of a bankruptcy attorney. Ask the young writers find the different types of bankruptcy – Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 and compare it or list the differences. Another option is with a service that is not quite popular – like e-learning localization, which is a more specific form of translation. Let them find several providers or several industries that can make use of it. Note that this type of tasks is more suitable for older and more experienced writers. It can even be applied to adults;
- Write for different audience – how they will write the story for their teacher, for a friend, for their grandparents. If the task is for university or college students – present your skills to your potential employer or pretend to be the boss addressing employees;
- Open end – give kids a tale that they are familiar with but without the end. Ask them to write how they would want it to end;
- Come up with a grocery shopping list, which is written as a poem or a story;
- Make the story shorter – give them a task to write a 500-word story, for example, and then set a challenge to make it shorter by following Mark Twain’s advice and “kill” every adjective. Or you can make it more fun by asking them to delete every 3rd or 4th word or replace each verb with only one, such as eat or drink and then read it out loud you would have a good laugh, that’s a guarantee.
Never forget that the task you give should be age appropriate. It should be challenging enough to provoke them to be creative, however it should not be too difficult and make them feel not capable of doing it. Discouraging the young writers is the last thing you want.
Get a tutor
If you are not a writing master yourself but you see that your kid clearly has interest in writing, one of the best things you can do ishire a tutor. While home tutoring can be based on the subjects the children study at school, it also gives you the opportunity to focus on more specific opportunities, such as developing writing skills. The best thing you can do is find someone who is a writer himself/herself, since we have already mentioned how important the personal example is. Besides, thus both student and teacher can exchange their written work and assess it. This will teach the child how to deal with criticism effectively, since criticism is a significant part of any writer’s life.
Another important advantage of hiring a tutor is that they will be able to assist your kid with actual school writing assignments and help them get better grades. Eventually, the child will become more confident in their writing and start really enjoying it. A person with the right approach will make your kind love writing without even realizing it.
So, if you believe that you have a writer at home or if you simply want help your kind manage the writing assignments with ease use any of the hacks above. You will find that writing is really fun!