Help Children Learn Creative Writing Of Stories At Home

How parents can help their children of preschool or kindergarten age to learn writing to create personal stories at home using the skills or drawing and/or writing they already have.

Every parent wants to help their child read, and most parents are well aware of the importance of reading to children at home long before they enter school. Literature for parents, though, often ignores other skills that young children can become involved with at home. When your child reaches the preschool or kindergarten years, it is equally important to develop all areas of literacy, including writing skills.

These writing skills are linked with reading skills, and like reading skills, they develop at an individual pace. Although you may think your child is not ready to create writing yet, you may be surprised by what your child can create with your support. Depending on your child's skills, you can focus on scripting, drawing, or inventive writing as a means of creating stories, but all stories created at home have common elements.

Perhaps you can create a writing center for your child in his or her bedroom or playroom, or in just a corner of your living room. Your child will need a surface, such as a small table, and an appropriately-sized chair. Gather up a selection of crayons, markers, pencil crayons or other fun writing materials. You will also need paper. This paper can be scrap paper, with one side already used, but try to keep all your paper for one story a uniform size. Use exciting colors and textures, or just unlined white paper. A stapler is also useful to finish your child's story in a format that he or she can read back to him or herself again and again.

If your child is not a spontaneous drawer, and does yet have any letter-making skills, but enjoys telling you stories, you can script your child's story.

Simply have your child tell you a story, writing one sentence per page. Keep your printing style large and uniform, using letter such as "a" in place of the less familiar "a". The key to having your child enjoy this story independently is ensuring that you guide your child in drawing pictures related to each sentence.

If your child loves to draw and create pictures independently, but does not yet have any letter creating skills, have your child draw a series of pictures, one per page. Your child may or may not wish to tell you a story while he or she is creating. Praise your child's work. When you feel that enough pages are completed to make a simple story, or the drawing session naturally ends, encourage your child to continue to the next step. Now, you can return to each picture and encourage your child to tell or re-tell a story to go with the pictures, scripting as you go.

If your child has shown that he or she is able to write some letters, let your child have a try at some inventive writing. After your child has drawn a series of pictures for you, or after you have drawn a series of pictures for your child, have your child listen to some of the beginning sounds in one of the key words in a sentence. For example, if your child has drawn "˜Batman', talk about the "˜b' sound and what letter it makes. If your child comes up with "˜b', have him or write even that letter on the page. Do not consider where on the page or how these letters or words are written, just that they are recorded as your child is able.

After your have continued through the length of your picture or sentence series, be sure to encourage your child to create a colorful title page, writing his or her name on it, if possible. Think of a fun title together. Be sure to staple or glue your child's story together in the form of a book. Be equally sure to have your child share this story, perhaps with another parent or adult. Let your child re-read this special story in the way he or she remembers it. This story will be a source of great joy for your child, and as well as developing reading, writing, phonics and drawing skills, will provide him or her with a memory of a time spent together.

© High Speed Ventures 2011