Imagination is something that should be nurtured in young people. Encouraging creative writing at home is one way parents can assist their children to improve both their literacy skills and imagination at the same time. Very few children can just sit down and write a story, they need inspiration, prompting and guidance. Here is a step by step method you can use to move your child through the writing process.
2. Sketch a picture.
This exercise is great for visual learners. Again, take a good look at your picture, look at it closely, encourage your child to look at it closely, taking in things they may have missed the first time they looked at it. Turn over the picture so you can't see it. Get your child to draw a picture from their memory. Visualising helps improve and work their memory as well as their imagination - intertwining the two. Allow your child to fully explore their imagination and memory and then draw what they experience. Don't worry about not being the greatest artist. Sketching gives your child a creative outlet for when they are struggling with putting pen to paper to form words.
3. Adjective chart
One of the best ways to really get ideas flowing in all directions is for your child to create an adjective chart. Get your child to look at their sketch and start to list down as many nouns they can about the scene in one column. One the other side, write down the adjective describing nouns. Don't worry about spelling! This is about creativity! Correcting your child's spelling will only make them choose the safe option, the easy word. Allow them to use a online thesaurus if it would help.
Start asking your child to think about writing a story based on their sketch and adjective chart. If they have no idea where they are going with their creative writing, then you may want to do some brainstorming together on what you want to accomplish. Ask your child - Do you want the reader to be moved by the piece because the object is special to you? Do you want the reader to rush out of their house and visit the scene? Do you want to reader to dislike the scene? Should they be afraid, happy, angry, thoughtful?
5. Time to Write and get it right!
Once you and your child have a direction they can begin to write their descriptive piece. Their first copy should be very different from your end result, so encourage them to take the time to write, re-read, edit, revise then write, re-read, edit, revise then write, re-read, edit, revise then write, re-read, edit, revise until they are happy with it.
This process is all about imagination and keeping it fun. Very few people are creative under pressure, so keep things light and try to have fun with it. Planning and writing might be a hobby you and your child can do together - bonding through stories.
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