Teach Your Kids to Write Stories
Teaching a child creative writing without taking all of the creativity out of the equation can be tricky but the results are worth the effort when you get to read a short story that shows how witty and creative your child can be.
Tips for Inspiring Creative Writing for Kids
- Teach the techniques, but encourage free thinking.
- Do not fix every little issue with grammar at first.
- Read often with your child, and encourage them to read on their own. Discuss how certain books made them feel. What would they do different than the main character? Would they have changed the story in any way if they were writing in. Encourage them to occasionally look at great writing as a participate after they enjoy the reading for the sake of it.
Techniques to Cover
- Establish that there is a beginning, middle, and end of a story. Reading short stories out lout and discussing which part fit where is a great informal way of establishing a storyline.
- Identify the characters, and ask your child what makes them appealing, what makes some of them good, bad, scary, funny, and unlikable.
- By reading out loud show examples of how an author shows location of a story and how they build a setting. Point out context clues such as the weather, scents, place names,and landmarks.
- Ask your child about the problem in a story, and ask them to orally tell you the solution giving in the story. Discuss how the story ended, and ask them if the author left and questions unanswered.
How to Start
To keep your child from being nervous about actually putting pen to paper encourage free writing at first just to warm up. Journals are great for this. They need to feel that they can write anything without worrying about judgment on context or grammar to really get creative.
- Once they are comfortable with passing their words from mind to paper, start helping them come up with ideas. You can make an idea box with random words such as blue, soccer, Paris, hot, banana, lizard, and they have to draw three words and make them key elements in their story.
- Grammar matters, but at first you may want to keep it separate from your creative writing sessions so a creative child does not get discouraged from writing.
- When creative writing comes more naturally you can start going over the editing process and work on improving syntax to produce a eventual perfect final copies of the best works.
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