Thursday 15 October 2020

Exploring Creative Writing with Your Child

Creative writing may not seem like an important element of your child’s education, but there are so many learning benefits to it that it’s certainly something worth exploring at home. Parents are always looking for things to do with their kids that are both fun and educational, so a creative writing project might be the answer. Not all children are sporty or outdoorsy; some prefer to stay indoors and read a good book. It is those types of children that would likely feel engaged by a creative writing activity. I have teamed up with a prep school in Surrey to offer you some tips on how to get started.

You should bear in mind that creative writing doesn’t necessarily mean your child needs to write their own story from scratch. This will probably be quite challenging, and they may get bored and give up, which isn’t something that parents want to promote. Instead, why not encourage your child to rewrite the final chapter or last few pages of a book they have already read? That way, they will already have the basis of a plot and full developed characters to explore. Perhaps you could write your own version too and compare with your child to see if you have chosen different paths.

Another way to help your child think about the important elements of a narrative is to encourage them to write a review of a book they have recently read. Ask them to use descriptive language to explore what they thought was good and perhaps what they thought was bad about the story. Encourage them to consider how the book made them feel; did they cry? Were they scared? Did they laugh out loud?

If your child does insist on writing their own story, encourage them to keep it fairly short so that it doesn’t become overwhelming. Ensure that they put a plan in place before they start so that they have a direction in mind. Mind-maps are great because they will help your child come up with words and phrases that they want to include in the story, based on a particular genre.

As you can see, creative writing will help your child build a range of key skills. They will learn to think outside the box, use their imagination and plan effectively; all important in both school and when they grow up and get a job. They will also learn new vocabulary and improve their spelling and grammar, which will help them to become better communicators. 

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