Teaching Kids to Love Writing

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Okay, so maybe your kids won’t all love writing, but you can definitely take steps to help kids enjoy writing and the writing process instead of dreading the task. 

As a former homeschool mom (both of my girls are now adults), homeschool co-op creative writing teacher, and multi-published author, I spend a lot of time writing and I absolutely love it. There is nothing I’d rather be doing.

However, what’s even more exciting is fostering a similar love and passion for writing in young students. Over the years I’ve learned a few things that have been helpful in that endeavor. Here are my top five tips for instilling a love of writing in kids of all ages.  

This is a guest post by Christian author Dani Pettrey. Find out more about Dani in her bio at the end of the post!

Teaching Kids to Love Writing - Love these practical and inspiring tips!

Start with Books They Enjoy

Most writing projects involve papers written in response to books they’ve read or as part of literature unit studies. Whether it’s a book report on Little House on the Prairie, a three-sentence summary of The Rainbow Fish, or an in-depth analysis of the thematic elements in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, writing about a story they enjoyed not only great for teaching kids to love writing, but also reading. Let them pick books that excite and interest them and they will be far more interested in sharing about them through writing projects. 

Pick Exciting Topics

When your students are working on research papers or essays, allow them to pick a topic that thoroughly interests them. They will be far more passionate in a persuasive essay if the topic is something they truly care about.

Don’t feel that you must limit your kids to the topics given in your curriculum. Take the writing exercise required, but let them come up with a topic or, better yet, get on the computer or head to the library and let them find a subject they’d like to learn more about and then give them the freedom to complete the given exercise on the topic of their choice. 

Explore a Variety of Writing Formats

To foster a love of learning, it’s helpful to take breaks now and again from the required formats and let your kids explore creative ways of expressing themselves through words. For example, let them write and illustrate a comic book or create a fictional journal written from their favorite character’s point of view. Have them develop a creative world of their own making and let them share it by writing a descriptive paragraph along with a picture of the land—combining art and writing for your younger students.

If your child loves to cook, let her create a small cookbook. If they love science, let them write an instruction booklet for a variety of experiments they’ve enjoyed. I recommend having your kids keep a notebook or journal for creative writing topics and ideas that they are passionate about. Record them as they pop up for later inspiration. You’ll be amazed how often you’ll find them working in their journals. 

Share Passionate Writing Examples

Expose your kids to a variety of literature, speeches, poetry, and song lyrics. Let them see how powerful the expression of words and ideas conveyed through well-written writing projects can be.

Share the Gettysburg address and famous quotes from Kennedy, President Reagan, and Martin Luther King Jr.’s speeches. Show the result and impact these speeches had and how words inspired a nation. Share song lyrics and hymns—play the music and let them see how the music can move them. Share biographies and autobiographies and let them discover how powerful it is to experience life through another’s eyes.

Writing comes in so many formats and, because of the written word, peoples’ lives have been greatly enriched and changed. Show them the power of words and I’ll bet they will develop a far greater appreciation for writing.  

Look at Available Resources

There is an abundance of writing resources available for homeschoolers. Some of our favorites included the following literature unit studies: Further Up and Further In (a wonderful unit study based on the Chronicles of Narnia) and Literary Lessons from Lord of the Rings.

My girls also attended creative writing courses at our homeschool co-op. We have friends who loved online writing courses that fostered guided writing instruction with an encouraging English instructor. As your kids get older they can always attend parallel enrollment classes at your local community college and take writing courses that way. 

Teaching Kids to Love Writing

There are so many approaches to teaching writing, a plethora of exciting topics, a nearly unending supply of fascinating books, and lots of writing formats to help kids come to love the writing process.

Obviously the basics need to be taught, but try thinking outside of the box and give your kids a fair amount of creative choice within those boundaries and I’ll bet you’ll find a lot less complaining and a lot more passion for the love of words.

It’s just a matter of determining what excites your child, discovering what sparks their creativity, and watching their desire to express themselves through the written word grow.  


DaniPettreyHeadshotDani Pettrey is a wife, mom, grandma, and the author of Cold Shot, the first book in the Chesapeake Valor series, and the bestselling Alaskan Courage romantic suspense series. 

She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves—the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters’ faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their two daughters, a son-in-law, and a super adorable grandson.

www.danipettrey.com 
www.facebook.com/DaniPettrey
www.danipettrey.com

 

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