When it comes to giving kids a love for writing it all starts with making it fun. If you do not make it fun then kids will not want to do anything. The most important part is keeping a positive attitude and making sure the children have a chance to really express themselves. Here are some tips on how to help kids to keep a journal and really enjoy writing it:

1.     Have great topics – The first thing that I have found to encourage children with journal writing is to give them a good idea to write about. Most people would have trouble just sitting down and writing on command, even adults, and children are no different. If they have something they want to write about then that is fine, but if you can give them a good topic to write on it can encourage even timid writers to explore the topic. Fun things like pets, vacations, and families are all popular subjects for children to write on and ones that they are usually very familiar with.

2.     Keep it short –Another point that I want to make when it comes to children’s writing is not to expect too much length from them. Most children are good at getting right to the point. Some kids can write several sentences or even pages while others have trouble writing more than a sentence or two. Instead of insisting on a length requirement, try to encourage them to write full ideas and make sure that anyone else who reads their journal will be able to follow what is going on. That can be a good way for them to reread their writing and improve on it without resentment.

3.     Let them express themselves –Another sore subject with me is the lack of expression that many children journal writers are subject to. Because they are instructed to write only on this subject or only on certain areas and in certain ways they are not really allowed to express themselves. Some kids write poetry, others non-fiction, others fiction. It is up to them to decide what best fits their needs. Some children can even treat the journal as a sort of self-discovery, which is very beneficial for them and can encourage a life time of productive writing.

4.     Encourage illustrations –Some children are just not writers. Instead of forcing them to go through the motions, why not encourage their other areas of interest. A captioned illustration can be just as revealing as a page of writing. Allowing non-writers the ability to illustrate their writing can encourage them to write more in the long term and not be frustrated and bored with the writing journal.

5.     Allow fiction –As I mentioned earlier, journals do not have to be non-fiction only accounts. Some children love fairy tales and other stories and would much rather write in that format then in a true to life fashion. Allow them to do that and they will enjoy the writing much more and even learn to express themselves better in nonfiction writing in the process.

6.     Use images –beyond just a good writing topic idea, you can also help children to write more creatively by using an image. It can be a landscape that they are supposed to set their story in, or a picture of relationships and discuss who is doing what and why, or even a fantasy image and what they would do in that situation. All these things help to encourage self-exploration and awareness.

7.     Decorate the journal –Another way to give children a sense that they should love journal writing is to allow them to decorate the journal. Cover the cover with images and words that mean something to them. Once they personalize the journal it will become less about work and more about completing something they have started and put a lot of work into.

8.     Share their writing –Many children thrive on positive recognition. If a child wishes to share their writing then they should be allowed to. Not only will it encourage connection between others, but it will also bolster their confidence and teach them skills like talking in front of a group and reading out loud.

9.     Peer review – Many times children dismiss the red pen of the teacher. However peer reviews are another story. If children can share their writing with the class or other children and get a response back then they can learn more about what it means to be a good writer. Many times children come up with questions that adults would have never thought of asking. Not only will this help the writer, but the other children will also learn listing skills and how to give a positive critique.

10. Collaborative stories –If you have a large group that you are trying to help write in journals then collaborative stories may be just the thing you need. By grouping children together and allowing them to create a story as a group they can lean teamwork and leadership skills as well as story plotting, organizing and collaboration. This can be a valuable experience for everyone involved.

These are just a few of the ways to encourage children to love journal writing. From independent exploration to team work and helping others, journal writing is a multifaceted way for kids to get involved and enjoy their work.

Author Bio:

Paul and his wife Julie both spend quite a bit of time coming up with ideas, blogging, and researching all things related to childcare. They take care of all the necessary information related to “www.babysittingjobs.com”. He personally thinks his blog will help with finding information on all things related to a babysitter. 

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