What Is Creative Writing For Children?
Creative writing is a style of writing that is used to express and provoke thoughts, feelings and emotions rather than simply providing information. It’s an opportunity for children to explore their imagination, often through telling a story, and practicing their literacy skills and sentence structures.
What Are The Benefits Of Creative Writing For Children?
Creative writing can benefit your child and their learning in a number of ways, including:
- Through regular practice and checking for mistakes, it can vastly improve your child’s ability to spell correctly.
- Writing on a regular basis can also help their understanding of grammar and the types of words used to create exciting sentences that flow well, including verbs, adjectives and connective words.
- Writing is largely associated with your child’s reading ability and their enthusiasm for it, helping to broaden their vocabulary and improving their skills in a more rounded way.
- It’s a brilliant way for your child to express themselves and feel more confident in their own opinions on topics, whilst helping to clarify their thoughts and emotions.
- The skills learnt from creative writing, such as developing your imagination and thinking outside of the box can be applied to real-life situations, allowing your child to discover alternative solutions to potential problems or obstacles.
- Creative writing for children can also be beneficial in developing their ability to empathise with others who are different from them. Each character will have their own situation, thoughts and feelings, allowing your child to explore different points of view and gain a better understanding of alternative experiences and walks of life.
- If they find particular aspects of writing difficult, overcoming these through regular practice will result in a sense of achievement and boost their confidence in their ability.
- Writing can incorporate other activities that your child likes to do, including illustration.
- Expressing themselves through creative writing can also help to alleviate any stress they may be carrying.
How To Start Creative Writing For Children
Reading on a regular basis, either by themselves or with a parent can help develop a child’s vocabulary, stimulate their imagination and also improve their communication skills if reading aloud. Reading a variety of genres will allow your child to explore different styles of writing, eliciting a range of ideas and helping to build the foundations of creativity, grammar and techniques needed to tell a good story.
Write About What They Love
It can often be difficult to simply start a story, with no forward planning or creative ideas. The best way to start is by focusing on a topic, person or belonging, such as a toy, that they love. This will make it easier for your child to engage and think creatively because they already have developed positive emotions and thoughts towards this topic.
You and your child could create a bank of creative ideas to form the basis and topics they want to include within their story. To make the experience more immersive, you could ‘hunt for ideas’ by visiting local places or engage in hobbies that interest them.
To further this, encourage your child to draw from their own experiences to flesh out the setting, background and characters of their story. This will make it a more meaningful piece, creating a story from what they know and are comfortable with.
How To Write Creatively
Structuring how their story is going to unfold and thinking about the sections involved in a piece of creative writing will help your child to organise their thoughts logically, and plan how and when they are going to address what they intend to include.
Let’s start with the introduction. Where is the story going to take place and in what time frame? The present, past or future? This will act as the base of their setting and should be the most compelling part, gripping the reader and encouraging them to read further. This is the first opportunity for your child to be creative, allowing them to set the scene in any way they want, whether that be in a different country or an entirely new planet altogether!
The body of the piece is where the real action happens and the story develops further. Your child should think about how the story unfolds, what happens and how to keep the reader engaged. Is there an obstacle to overcome or a challenge that must be faced? The ending is the perfect opportunity to tie everything together in a neat little bow, leaving the reader wanting more with a thrilling cliffhanger or a hint of mystery with a question unanswered. What is their intention with their story?
The characters and the way they interact with each other throughout usually forms the main bulk of a story and so they should be planned out carefully. A great way for your child to incorporate characters of all shapes, sizes and personalities is to create a table that defines their characteristics. This will help encourage your child to think about inclusivity and how to make things a little more interesting for the reader.
- Who are they? What is their name?
- What do they look like?
- How do they act? What is their behaviour and personality like?
- What is their relationship to the other characters in the story?
- How do they want the readers to feel about each character?
The language used helps to shape the mood and the tone of the piece, presenting a brilliant opportunity for your child to practice their sentence structure and incorporate a range of vocabulary. It is also a great way to ease them into more advanced writing techniques that they are likely to learn in the future, such as pathetic fallacy, where the weather reflects or forebodes the mood or events to come.
If your child is particularly excited to use larger and more difficult words within their piece, create a list of these and when the opportunity presents itself, insert them to make the writing more sophisticated. This will also help your child to better understand the meaning of these words. Emphasise how different types of words convey actions, descriptions, and meanings and how these enhance the story in a more impactful and exciting way. The use of synonyms allows your child to swap out words that are used regularly with other variants, to express their meaning in an alternative way.
The use of dialogue adds to the tone of voice of the piece and encourages the reader to form a connection with the characters. What are they thinking and feeling? This also enables your child to act out a character and put themselves in another’s shoes. How would they deal with or react to a given situation?
How Can Achieving Success Help You?
For more information on creative writing for children please contact a member of our friendly today. Alternatively, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 0121 769 2795. We also provide a creative writing programme for children in Year 6 who are practicing for their SATS exams. Enhance your child’s creative writing ability with Achieving Success.