Ah, writing. A love after my own heart, and, like reading, I strongly believe it’s a love your children will naturally pick up on when they see you engaging in it. We don’t need studies conducted to know that children observe what their parents value and spend time on and follow suit.
Whether it’s making grocery lists, To-do lists, writing to a friend, writing a story, or just writing for the fun of it, let your kids see you writing (not typing) on a regular basis. If you force it or “make” it a lesson it may not be as fun (unless your child loves to play school) but incorporate writing into your daily life, and they are sure to follow the interest.
My kindergartner already knows how to write all her letters and can spell some words independently and for the rest she asks me how to spell the words she wants to write as she goes. People ask me “how” she is advanced, but it’s nothing I’ve done, she naturally excells in this area because she thoroughly enjoys spending her time writing. Every day she is writing letters to friends, making grocery lists and making up stories. A lot of time with the stories she dictates them to me and I write them, but this too, stimulates her love for creating stories, writing and reading! Often she’ll draw the pictures and have me write the story she makes up underneath it. Then when dad gets home from work, he reads the story to her before bed, delighting her in the fact that the story she made up really can be read, letters make words, etc. When a third person who wasn’t present for her telling it can know what it says… the magic of the written word is an adventure that, if lovingly encouraged, will hopefully never leave your children.
Here are a few more tips I can offer in the way of encouraging, depending on the age of your kids.
Find them a pen-pal or two, or three… kids love getting and sending mail, and you can teach how to address an envelope and stamp it while you’re at it. This also begins opportunity to teach them grammar and how to properly start and end a letter. You can even decorate a special box for them to keep their (more…)