Thursday, January 9, 2014

How to Grow a Successful Writer Part 2

If you missed the first half of this blog post, you might want to read How to Grow a Successful Writer Part 1 before continuing. Moving forward, check out tips 6-10 along with updates.

Tip 6: Give Your Garden Time to Grow 
Offer your child a wide variety of opportunities to practice writing well, from journaling to book reviews to letter writing to poetry to lap booking to reports and any other type of writing that comes to mind! The more diverse your child’s writing assignments, the more successful he’ll be in the long run. 

Update Tip: If you find that your child tends to lose interest quickly, start with shorter writing assignments and then add a little as the successes accrue. Be cautious about creative writing assignments. While they sound fun in theory, many children struggle with writing creatively because of the lack of structure. Many children respond better to structured assignments that provide steps to completion rather than an open-ended writing plan.

Tip 7: Don’t Harvest too Early 
Before writing a paragraph, a child should understand how to write a well 
developed sentence. Sometimes parents become concerned that their children 
aren’t progressing fast enough and they decide that a book report should be 
written before a child can competently write a solid paragraph. Most children 
don’t run before they walk and writing development should be viewed the same 
way. Transitioning more slowly in the early years and spending significant time 

on the basics paves the way for greater accomplishments later. 

Update Tip: I often hear from parents about what other families are accomplishing with their children. Homeschooling provides the brilliant opportunity to teach each of our children that they need to learn. Your child has years to learn to write well, so take it easy and build on skills without rushing ahead. The final result will be worth it! 

Tip 8: Weed and Prune 
One of the most common complaints I hear from homeschooled children is that their parents don’t ever grade their writing. They appreciate that I actually return their work with marks for evaluation. If you assign it, then evaluate it. Don’t expect your child to 
complete a writing assignment if you’re not willing to spend time reading and correcting it. Writing evaluation can be truly challenging and it does take time that we often want to spend doing other things (almost any other thing ☺), but it’s important to validate our children’s efforts with evaluation. 

Update Tip: If you don't feel comfortable evaluating your child's written work, consider using the CBB evaluation services. With reasonable fees and turnaround times, you can afford the services and save yourself some time and anxiety.

Tip 9: You’ll Reap What You Sow 
It’s not uncommon for parents to confess to me that they have neglected teaching 
writing. I do understand that it’s easier to teach subjects that are more objective, 
but if writing is instilled as a life skill from an early age, it’s more likely that 
writing will be more easily taught throughout your child’s education. 

Update Tip: The great news is that it's never too late to start! So, if you've neglected writing in the past, today provides another opportunity. If you don't feel confident or simply don't enjoy teaching writing, check out the CBB courses available and register today...then you can relax and teach the subjects what you do enjoy!

Tip 10: Can’t Harvest the Crop Alone? Hire Some Help! 
Often it’s best to turn over skills to another person if you find it challenging to teach and/or evaluate. Learning how to write with other students can also be more motivational, depending on your child’s learning style. 
Writing definitely comes more easily to some students, and parents, than others, but all students greatly benefit from being able to write well. As you homeschool, how will 
your child's writing garden grow?

If you have motivational or creative ideas about teaching your children to write, be sure to post them and share with other moms!

God bless,

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