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Exploring creative writing with your child

There are lots of advantages for children when it comes to exploring creative writing, both in an academic sense and also on a personal level. With that said, it might be something you wish to start encouraging within your home, using the advice provided below by a private school in Bristol.

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It’s a chance for them to develop a range of key skills that can support them throughout their childhood and even when they’re adults. What’s more, creative writing can be fun.

Plan with a mind-map when exploring creative writing

If your child is going to be writing their own story from scratch, encourage them to start with a mind-map or other type of planning system. Get them to think about the genre, and what words and phrases might be associated with that theme. For instance, if the genre is sci-fi, they can jot down some words like space, planets, aliens, stars etc. If it’s romance, their words would be things like love, relationships, marriage.

Within their plan, they should also consider their characters and what they might be able to see, hear, smell, taste, or touch. What do they look like and what will they wear? Encourage them to come up with lots of adjectives to describe their characters.

Write book reviews

Starting a story from scratch might be too big a challenge for your child, so you might want to suggest some other activities instead. For instance, if they are a keen reader, you could ask them to pretend to be a journalist and write a review of a recent book they’ve read. Would they recommend the book to other people? Is there anything that could have improved in the book? What did they like and dislike about the book and how did it make them feel? Did they laugh out loud, or cry? Doing this is a great way of exploring creative writing.

Exploring creative writing by children doing book reviews

Rewrite the ending of a book

Another activity you could suggest is your child re-writing the ending of their favourite book. This should be easier than starting from scratch because the characters and plot have already been established. This activity will also get them thinking about how minor changes in a character’s behaviour or actions can heavily influence the way things turn out, which they can relate to real life when they make their own decisions. Essentially, it should help them start to understand cause and effect.

Work as a team when exploring creative writing

Writing doesn’t have to be a solitary activity; it could be something that you do together. You will be able to motivate them and give them your own perspective to help them think outside the box and consider new concepts. You will also be able to help them when they get stuck with spelling or can’t find the right word. Keep a dictionary and thesaurus to hand to help.

These creative writing activities are a fantastic way for your child to become better writers. They will be able to develop their vocabulary and become more proficient with their spelling and grammar. This will also help them with the communication skills on a more general level. These are fundamental skills that will benefit your child throughout their education but also when they are applying for universities or jobs in the future.

Whatever type of creative writing activities your child pursues, make sure it’s something that they are genuinely interested in. If they find the topic boring, they won’t enjoy the task and will probably give up, which won’t allow them to experience that sense of accomplishment that goes along with seeing something through to the end. If you do notice that your child is feeling discouraged with their creative writing activity, try and mix things up and encourage some role playing to bring their story to life.

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