For Students

July 29, 2013

Do You Have a Reluctant Writer?

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Written by: Shari
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reluctant writer; injoyinc.com/ohjoyDoes your child struggle with spelling?

Do they hold their pencil with a death grip, and force each word tortuously from the end of their pencil?

Is getting them to write a sentence an hour long battle?

Sometimes we try to force them to do something that they’re just not ready for. And although it seems to go against all wisdom, logic, and common sense–sometimes we need to give the poor kid a break, and come back to that skill when they are more mature. Spend that hour teaching them something that they enjoy–after they spend just five minutes working to increase their skill just a little bit. Don’t expect miracles, just expect a little progress!

So, wherever your child is in their gross motor skills, and fine motor skills, and their aural maturity to hear sounds, or their ability to process sounds into words, just encourage them where they are today.

Even if that’s just sounding out a word, or finding the beginning sound, or the vowel sound, or the ending sound, or writing each of the sounds on paper to produce a word, or putting two or three words together to form a sentence–encourage your child where he is today, and realize that with a tiny bit of daily progress–you can make great strides by this time next year!

So, get just five minutes of good effort, and here’s something that might help!

Print out this Creative Story Starter sheet.

Here are some ideas to use this activity with a reluctant writer or speller:

  • Let your child pick a character and write it on a slip of paper (they’ll probably pick the ant–it has only 3 letters!)
  • Let them dictate their story to you, but let them write the title.
  • Save one small sentence for them to write in the story they dictate to you.
  • Leave some fill-in-the-blanks with words they can write.
  • As you are writing the story they dictate, ask them the beginning letters of some words.  Or let them discover the vowel sound.
  • Let them help you spell some of the small words you’re writing.
  • Pick one sentence you have written for them to copy in their copybook. If they don’t have to think about spelling, and can just concentrate on forming their letters, that makes it easier for some reluctant writers.

Small steps will get you where you want to go. Just ask the tortoise! And for more fable fun, join our free Summer Writing Program here.

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About the Author

Shari
Shari Popejoy, wife of twenty-eight years, mother of three, founder of a local co-op for hundreds of homeschool children, author of seven books, and creator of Won Without Words (a blog of encouragement for wives) lives in the quiet country of the Ozarks where she enjoys writing surrounded by nature (and her children, of course). She is currently completing Volume V of the Livingstone Library, an adventure series for 'smart' kids, which features characters with character, and underlying allegorical spiritual truths. She enjoys high places and the road less traveled, and moments when all is well, and peace permeates like a fragrance. . .oh, and chocolate, fresh fruit and veggies, and early morning sunrises. Read her blog at WonWithoutWords.com.




 
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