Simple Ways to Encourage Kids to Write

If there is one thing that I have learned as a mom, it’s that each kid is unique. They each have methods and motivators that work best for them from. This is something I felt I always knew, then we started homeschooling and it was even more clear. In the past I have become frustrated when what I think should work just doesn’t. But as I have matured and calmed down (something I am still working on some days)  I’ve realized that I need to be open to exploring and finding options that work the best for my girls. One area Marissa has really struggled with is writing. Today I want to share with you some tips and trick to encourage kids to write as well as a product that we love. Thank you Timberdoodle for sponsoring today’s post and as always, all opinions are my own.

Simple ways to encourage kids to write.

1) Choose topics your child is interested in
If I was to ask Marissa to write me a paper about Henry Ford she likely would give me a squishy face that made her disapproval rather obvious. Getting her to write the paper would be a slow and painful process. But if I asked her to write about dolphins or any other thing she loves her initial attitude about the project will be much better. When kids are learning how to write, let them write about the things they love. 

2) Write letters
Letter writing is not only a skill that will benefit your child for the rest of their lives, it is also a great way teach them how to put sentences together properly. Thank you notes are an excellent place to start or you could sign your kid up for a pen pal. I have been wanting to do this for Marissa for quite some time now.

3) Help them
Sometimes I get so set on wanting her to do things by herself that I forget we all need a little help some times. I was once encouraged by a more experienced home school mom to be willing to help her get started. 9 times out of 10 the kid just needs a gentle nudge or two and once they get going your help will no longer be welcomed. 

4) Celebrate & encourage
When a kid does something that was challenging for them the best possible thing to do is to take notice and speak love in a way that means something to them. A reward system, lots of verbal praise or even taking the time for the whole family to sit down and listen to what they wrote. You can never encourage a child too much. 

5) Equip them to succeed
This last tip is one that really excites me, equipping your child to succeed. Doesn’t that just sound so good?! It is hard to teach a child without giving them a foundation to build on and the resources needed to learn. I believe we found a gem when we discovered Daily 6- Trait Writing.

IMG_9582Daily 6- Trait Writing focuses on the 6 characteristics that shape quality writing and refines them; content, organization, word choice, sentence fluency, voice, and conventions. The lessons are simple to do so they fit right in with our existing language curriculum.

trait 2 Trait 1
And my favorite part is Marissa loves it. With just 15 minutes a day we have greatly improved her writing ability.

She is being challenged to grow and she is thriving.

Sharing 5 simple ways to encourage kids to write in today's blog post. #homeschool #momtips Click To Tweet

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What is your favorite writing tip for kids (or adults)?

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  • My daughter could really benefit from these great suggestions! I am going to online and order the Daily 6-Trait for both of my girls! Thanks!! Have a great day.

    • I hope they do wonders for you guys. Have a great 4th!

  • Love this…one of my goals for Willis this summer is to get him writing more

    • I tried an incentive problem with Marissa trying to get her to write book reports… yeah that’s not working out so well. I need to find the write way to get her going.

  • Wow, I am pinning this to use with my kids one day. I think it is such a treasure to show kids the value of writing. Thank you for sharing this post!

    • Yes, exactly what you said. Thank you so much for your sweet words.

  • I love all of these tips. I have a feeling we’re going to have a time getting Jacob to write. He LOVES to read. LOVES it. But ask him to write, and he’s not remotely interested. He’s never really liked coloring or drawing or anything that he has to do with a writing utensil. Pre-k 4 seems to have made him a little more interested, though, so hopefully Kindergarten this fall will light the fire!

    • I’ve noticed that kids who can easily verbalize their feelings tend to be better at writing too. Does that sound weird? I hope that makes sense. Marissa has always struggled to express herself so I think that contributes to her strugggle. I bet he’ll surprise you. I didn’t realize he was the same age as my Emily?! She just turned 5 in February.

      • Yes, that makes perfect sense! And I didn’t realize that they were the same age either! I can’t believe they will be kindergartners in the fall. Where is the time going… :o(

        • I don’t know, but I don’t like it one little bit!

  • What a great tool, and only 15 minutes a day, totally worth it, especially if it helps.

    • Exactly. That little time investment is ALWAYS worth it.

  • chall1018

    Oh, love this! Mason’s handwriting is all over the place. He writes so big! And he’s not a fan of it either.

    • I didn’t start really riding Marissa to write smaller until second grade, he’ll get there friend. More than the sizer for me I want consistency. That is something we are still working on too. Not sure how I feel about starting cursive this year.

  • I love these tips! I’m going to have to remember this for when Caleb’s older! <3

  • What a great post! My 8 year old and I are in the middle of writing a very epic super hero story about princesses and such. It is so much fun to just sit together and come up with crazy twists and turns for our story.

    • That is so cool Jen. You’ll have to share it with us when your done!

  • Great ideas! To answer your ending question: Journaling is another great way to write. Not the “secret type” of journal, but a daily topic journal you give her. Example: Write one thing you were thankful for today or on a more fun note, if you were a princess……. You get the idea. I once tutored and writing was a struggle for this student and as soon as I purchased a pretty writing tablet, pretty pencils and gave her a topic each day, her imagination smiled.

    • Great tips Michelle. I knew you would have some good one. I did order some blank journals you and Whitney have given me some great ideas on how we can fill them. Thank you!

  • Whitney Jordan

    What a sweet student!! I loved those Daily workbooks for my 2nd/3rd graders. They’ve got a Daily Oral Language and a Daily Math that are wonderful. We’d often do them together as a class and talk through all the options. I LOVED teaching writing and my kids always enjoyed writing prompts that were open ended. For example: 1. I walked downstairs to find a puppy in my living room. 2. ___________ is my favorite day of the week because _______ 3. If you were in charge of planning the BEST day ever. What would the agenda for the day be? or 4. Any how to guides… how to swim, how to pack a lunch, how to learn to run, how to enjoy a car show 🙂 I’d give the prompt and the kids were responsible for finishing the story to match the prompt. We’d share, edit and enhance after that. Happy Writing!!

    • Those are great ideas Whitney. I just knew you would have something helpful to add to this.

  • Jill @ Jill on the Hill

    You’re right- have them write about something they’re interested in! So motivating!! Stopping by from Grammie Time Party link!!

    • It is motivating, right?! I notice that even when it comes to blogging. Righting about things that I love is always SO much easier than things I am “meh” about.

  • Is that her new shirt from Target? Think she might like it a bit? I feel like I’ve seen it all over on her already =)
    I’m sure it is a journey to find how each kid learns the best and then with each different subject as well as evolving from year to year. It sounds like a huge task! eek.

    • Yes! It was actually only the second time she wore it but both times I have taken blog photos so it may look like she lives in it.

      That it is, but a totally doable one too.

  • I love that you mentioned thank you notes because I love giving them. Snail mail is a thing of the past so I love sending someone a bit of snail mail for fun.

    • Yes! She has been writing TONS of thank you notes lately since she just had a birthday. That card making kit that she got for Christmas is being put to good use!

  • My Zachary has a very hard time with writing – he’s actually considered to have a learning disability in that area. It is so hard to get him to do it because it is hard for him! I saw something that I thought he might like but I didn’t buy it – there is this book series he likes called “who was…” and they are biographies of famous people. The one I saw as a journal called “who is..” and it’s about the child! I wonder if that would be interesting for him or not!

    • Marissa did a similar book last year and really enjoyed it. It never hurts to try and see if it get some forward motion going. It is so hard when things are hard for the kid, we’ve been there (especially with math). Just keep working and encouraging as much as you can.

  • Meghan Flinn

    I think adapting to each child must be the hardest part of being a teacher, in a school or at home! I’d love to see your homeschool set up and what a typical day looks like. Are you very scheduled or more laid back? I’m learning there are so many different methods when it comes to home schooling.

    • It is definitely one of the hardest parts, but one of the best parts about homeschooling too. We have the freedom to adapt in ways that classes of 20 kids just can’t. It works both ways too. We can work ahead or behind pace and linger as we need too. I can also customize reviews just for them. I love it.

      Okay, so funny you asked. My post tomorrow actually goes over some of this. As far as my set up I’ll link you a post. This room is actually changing and I’ll probably do another post in about a month. I HAVE to add a desk space for myself so we are getting ready to do a DIY project to make that happen.

      http://ourprettylittlegirls.com/2015/07/school-room-makeover-revea.html/

  • Yes and yes. Every child is different and finding what works for them is really important. We’re not at sentence writing yet as Kinsey is happy just writing her name, but at least she’s found some interest in letters this year. That was not the case last year.

    • Lol! Yes, I know exactly what you mean friend. I didn’t even start pushing sentence writing until first grade. You have time :).