My professional journey as a creative writer started at 17. But in retrospect, I feel I always had a flair for creative writing – which got unnoticed for a very long time. I was fortunate enough to discover my passion for writing at the right time and could make a livelihood out of it.
Perhaps I often wondered if starting early and honing this skill in the classroom setup before entering the corporate world could have helped me better contour my personality.
A little research weaved my thoughts in the right direction. A 2019 Study on Creative Writing at School-Level concluded that when introduced in the primary years, Creative Writing as a process can help kids express themselves better, build confidence, and foster imagination.
Making it a part of the daily routine is the best way to inculcate the practice of writing. So what are the 5 ways that you can resort to encouraging your child’s creative writing?
Recommended Reading: 5 Ways to Encourage Your Child’s Creative Writing
Let’s discuss them in detail…
Ways to Encourage Your Child’s Creative Writing
1. Encourage reading habit
If you really want your child to enjoy expressing their emotions and ideas through writing, you must create an environment at home that brings them in direct contact with words and expressions that they can absorb.
Using “skippy frog strategy” would allow the child to keep reading till the end without feeling stuck on decoding new sentences or words. Once done, the child can come back and decode the words with your help. This strategy also helps kids put sentences and words into a proper structure, syntactical paths, and graphophonic sounds.
We used to have a “read 20 pages a day” rule at home while growing up. Initially, it was a forced habit but eventually became a permanent lifestyle change that shaped our personalities in unimaginable ways. Most importantly, books open minds to unexplored paths that pay off in the long run.
Recommended Reading: Creativity for kids: 10 Ways to Nurture Your Child’s Creative Mindset
2. Start with small assignments
The last thing you want to do as a parent makes creative writing a tedious affair for your kids. Every human, big or small, repels anything that requires their undivided attention by force. So start with small assignments and make them fun.
For example, Ask them to write a poem on grocery shopping with their parents.
Or play “Tell me How.” Ask them to describe the steps to accomplish certain tasks, such as feeding the pets, morning routine, buying clothes online, and so on. Ask them to add humor and wit to the steps of instructions. Do not dictate at any given point. You’ll see how their imagination will spark creativity with each new game.
Recommended Reading: 11 Ways to Ignite the Spark of Creative Thinking Among Kids
3. Make journalling a family ritual
Children learn by watching the adults in their lives. Their parents’ habits, daily routines, and conduct around them have a great influence on them. So if you really want them to get to writing, you gotta do it with them.
The best way is to decide a time every night, post-dinner or before bedtime. Make it a daily ritual. Journaling together as a family also helps develop emotional intelligence. Kids can always seek your help with their doubts, and you can clear them with a simple interaction. You can also invest in special kids’ journals preloaded with ideas and prompts to give a head start to their writing feats.
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4. Plan “Everybody Writes” night
Organize special gatherings with friends and family and encourage everyone to write something. Stories, poems, jokes, riddles, comic books, cartoons, plays, and songs – there are a lot of ways to indulge in creative writing. Give everyone a fair space and time to share their creations with everyone. This will help them build confidence, improve fluency, and overcome the fear of public speaking.
You can organize such gatherings fortnightly or once a month at your convenience.
Allow mistakes. Let me tell you, we learn some of the most important lessons for creative writing through mistakes. When children make mistakes in creative writing, they realize the type of ideas and structures that work and those that don’t. This helps them develop their writing skills and gain more knowledge.
Additionally, mistakes can help children become more confident in their writing by increasing their resilience as they learn to take criticism and use it to their advantage. Making mistakes when learning creative writing also encourages children to take risks and express their ideas in their unique ways.
5. Creative writing is a process
Creative writing is a process where individuals are encouraged to pen down their thoughts without worrying about facts, figures, and other prejudiced expectations. It is a free-flowing exercise of thoughts without implementation.
Let’s say a child is going through a development phase; writing their thoughts can help them process the changes positively and productively. Over time, creative writing engages the cognitive elements in kids and develops logical reasoning and analytical skills – two important pillars of success.
In a Nutshell
Allowing children to explore their creative sides and express themselves through writing can help develop their communication, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills. Not only this, but creative writing can also help with stress relief, increase motivation to learn, and help develop empathy.
Encouraging children to write stories, poems, and plays can help them realize their potential and build confidence.
Furthermore, creative outlet helps in expressing thoughts and feelings that children may not be comfortable sharing in other environments. In addition, by fostering a creative writing atmosphere in classrooms, teachers can open up a world of possibilities for their students.
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