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Taking flight: Teach children to love writing

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When it comes to educating our kids, many of us focus on instilling them with a love for reading. Reading is great, but what about writing? Why not introduce our children to the joys of putting words to the page?

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Flickr: marakawalv

Read: 5 tips for bringing energy to your writing

As writers, we know the thrill that comes from tapping our imaginations and letting them run wild and unchecked. Writing is a powerful, fulfilling experience that lets us reach deep into the unknown and extract new meaning, new ideas and a new world.

Writing is innovation.

Read: Branch out: Write what you know and beyond

So, how can you inspire your children to write? Here are some ideas for you:

Encourage journaling. Yes, it sounds cliché, but kids learn self-awareness and expression when they journal. Once they have picked up the habit, urge them to move beyond the personal and find themes. Then, look at ways to develop their ideas into something more.

Introduce poetry. Whether rhyming or free form, poetry allows writers of every age to play with language in fun and meaningful ways. Experiment with writing a limerick or haiku. Encourage them to explore their feelings or to just have some silly fun.

Practice storytelling. This can be done orally at first. Treat the storytelling experience as you would sitting around a campfire. Help the kids shape the beginning, middle and end of the narrative. Guide them to the climax of the story. Then help them to commit the words to their journals.

Inspire creativity. We become great writers when we are active in life. Life is the best writing prompt out there, right? Or get the creative juices flowing with an odd assortment of characters and circumstances for a story. There is a firefighter and a ballerina at a wishing well when a raging brawl ensues. What? Now that’s some craziness. Set up prompts like these in order to get your kids writing.

Embrace the web. Yes, that’s right. There are some inventive tools out there for writing hopefuls. One such tool – The Prose App – is a great place for new and veteran writers to float their best stuff and then get some great feedback and support.

Kerri S. Mabee is managing editor at EducatedWriter.com and founder of Breeze Media & Communications. Learn more about her at kerrismabee.com.

Kerri S. Mabee

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