There is nothing like the imagination of a child and managing it can be a tricky task. Creative tasks like art and music tend to be the go-to areas for outlets for their imaginations, however, sometimes writing is the best way to get exactly what you want onto a page.
A Love of Reading
There is one universal truth when it comes to authors, they were all readers first. Inspiring a love of reading in children is vitally important in inspiring children to write not only as a valuable skill to get them through day-to-day life but as a way to help them find the words they need to express themselves.
Encourage your child to find what books they enjoy. Don’t try and push books on your child based on what you think they should be reading. Spend time sharing stories and having a diverse reading time to give them a chance to experience lots of different genres. Spend time with your child and have them point out words they really like. You can also have them try to guess the next stage in the story. For learning new words, create a list of the words your child doesn’t recognize and look them up together to encourage them to learn and grow.
Create a Culture of Writing
Kids learn by watching and if you tell them one thing but do another you will never inspire your child. Take time to make sure you create a culture of writing by making notes and plans, writing birthday cards for people or even taking time to write your own story or journal as your child also writes.
Seeing someone they look up to write is something that sticks with a child. Get the child involved in some of the day-to-day writing you do. Have them sign birthday cards for family, ask them for messages in letters to relatives etc. Note this does not all have to be a pencil-to-paper exercise. You can do these things digitally with your child if you prefer.
Provide a Writing Space
Inspiring children to write will be much easier when you make a space for writing to happen, even if it’s just a box of supplies and the kitchen table. Having space to write and the tools at hand to write are key in inspiring your child to write. Have scrap paper available to scribble on, notebooks they can create their own stories in, and plenty of pencils, pens, crayons etc. for them to write with.
We highly recommend you check out Nilo activity tables! They’re the perfect place to do all types of writing activities for kids. Keep a children’s dictionary nearby to help them if they are struggling to spell words and work with your child to support them where they are struggling.
Create A Fun Writing Activity
Make writing a fun activity you can do, this is surprisingly easy and a lot of fun. You could
create a family recipe book together, include writing in playtime by having them write up a
menu when playing restaurant or a brochure when playing hotels.
Encourage kids to create their own books and stories, scrapbooks, picture books and even scribble books. These are all great ways to get them writing by having them write captions on the pages. You can also have the kids write journals of what they’ve been up to. Consider encouraging them to write fantasy letters to their favorite characters to help them express their feelings.
Inspiring Children to Write Through Support & Encouragement
The most important step when inspiring your child to write is to be supportive. Don’t criticize them incessantly and make your child feel like their ideas are worthless. Where children make mistakes, be patient and work through them with your child. This is where a list of helpful words can come in handy.
Encourage them to keep trying and guide and teach them instead of trying to fix them. Some children will have issues with reading and grammar. They may have special needs that need to be taken into account so it is important to pay close attention. This does not make your child dumb and you should never make your child feel stupid for making a mistake or being challenged.
Celebrating the writing successes and encouraging them to show off their work is surely a great way in inspiring children to write. Most of all make sure your child knows that you love everything they write even if it’s not perfect.