Getting your child to learn how to write can be daunting and involves hard work and patience. It will involve a wide variety of activities that ranges from targeting muscle strengthening to arousing their interest in writing. The key is of course to help your child associate writing with having fun.
Always remember that the pace of development is different with every child, do not force it on your child if they are blatantly not ready. It is a balancing exercise between encouraging your child to write and giving them enough space to develop at their own pace.
Below are some fun activity ideas to get your child to start writing!
- Drawing! Getting used to holding a thick crayon is the first step to mastering the skill of holding a pencil to write with. This will help with eye-hand coordination as well as muscle strengthening for holding a pencil. Remember to choose a thick crayon instead of a thin one. They are easier to control for a child.
- Playing with clay is also very useful for strengthening the necessary muscles in the hands in preparation of writing. Let their creativity flow and let them play and learn at their own pace. Simple pouring activities can also help with the muscle strengthening in the hands.
- Muscle strengthening aside, you can also start tracing your finger through the words in a story book as you read to your child. This will instill in your child from a young age the idea that words are written from left to right in a sentence.
- Lead by example! Show your child that writing is useful in everyday life. Children love doing “adult things”. They will follow your example, and it will instill in their mind that writing is good, useful and purposeful!
- Make cards! Be it Christmas cards, birthday cards or thank you cards. Giving your child a sense of purpose in writing will encourage them to write more. Plus incorporating writing in art and craft will help your child associate writing with happiness and fun.
Apart from encouraging your child to write with fun activities, you will also need to provide them with the necessary support. Make sure that writing materials are always readily available to your child. Remember to reassure your child that they are always free to use them. Encourage your child to write by giving them positive reinforcements, never negative reinforcements. Confidence is of utmost importance for beginner writers!
Write up! Good luck parents.