(Teaching) Writing Angst

I’ve heard so many homeschool moms confess that they are terrified to attempt to teach their children how to write. I’m not talking penmanship, but how to form intelligent sentences and paragraphs. Many moms don’t seem to have much confidence in their own writing ability and therefore don’t feel that they can teach their kids anything in that area.

journal by sisterlisa, on Pix-O-Sphere

The wonderful news is that you don’t have to do it all on your own! There are online programs that can help. For most of us, simply getting  our kids to write a few sentences is a huge challenge in itself. That’s when you can turn to online writing ideas.

I happen to have one child who LOVES to write. She may turn out to be one of an elite set of homeschool authors. I just need to work with her on grammar and punctuation. My other kids are a completely different story! Pun intended.  They are boys, so that may have a lot to do with it. Males just don’t seem to be as verbose as females, at least not at this age. Both my sons seem to struggle with putting any of their thoughts into words either spoken or written. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t need to keep trying.

There are tons of ways to get a kid motivated to put their thoughts down in text.

  • You could have them keep a journal. Let them start out doing mostly drawings and have them add captions to them. Eventually you could have them write an entire story about their pictures.
  • Have them try their hand at writing a blog. You could have them take a blog writing course to be sure that they are blogging safely. Don’t forget to monitor their blog even after they take the course!
  • Have a file of writing prompts to spark their imagination.
  • Let them use the computer to write. Often kids even teens, dislike using a pencil to write, but will suddenly open up if allowed to use a keyboard instead.
  • Don’t critique their spelling and punctuation. If your goal is simply to get them writing, then focus on that to begin with. You can teach them spelling and punctuation through other venues.

Try some of these ideas and you just might have the next great homeschool author in your house as well!

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