Education: The Importance of Creative Writing for Children
Education—The importance of artistic and creative development is something that can be encouraged at a young age. Parents and educators can help nurture and foster creativity in children with some simple games and activities. Creative writing helps to encourage this development and plays an important role in one’s ability to communicate.
Fun Ways to Nurture a Child's Creative Writing Ability
There are some fun ways to nurture this development in your child. By allowing your child’s creative juices to run wild and unhindered, this helps to develop and strengthen their written and verbal skills. Some of the activities that parents can do to stimulate the creative juices in their children include:
Activity 1: Read a favorite story.
Have your child choose a favorite story that either you or they read – depending on their reading ability. Have them change the ending of the story. For example, in the bestseller: LadyBug Girl, does she decide to start her own baseball team because her big brother won’t let her play with him? Who does she include on her team? Her silly dog? Do they play in her backyard or at the school baseball field? Do they use pink bats or brown bats? By asking questions about their story, it helps them to formulate a more thorough idea of where they want to take the story.
Activity 2: Recall a favorite family story.
As most parents can attest, our little ones have amazing memories! They can recall things that we forgot (or never absorbed) quite often. Have them remember a fun or silly family story. What time of year did this event happen? Was it during the warm or cold months? What part of the story did they think was the funniest? Who laughed the hardest? This activity is guaranteed to be a fun one!
Activity 3: Take a tour of their favorite or imagined place.
Have them take you on a tour of their favorite place. This could be at Disneyland, a rainforest, or on the plains of Africa. Have them describe the animals, colors and sights they see. They can even make up new creatures and inventions. Disney’s Phineas and Ferb, is one of our favorite shows because the boys are always coming up with new inventions. This activity can really get your child’s imagination flowing!
Depending on your child’s age, you can have them tell you their stories and you can write them down. For older children, maybe a special journal or notebook with funky paper and cool pens could encourage them to make the connection that writing should be fun and exhilarating.
I hope these ideas helped get your creative juices flowing on how to encourage children to start writing for fun. One way to do this to have your child enter MrsP.com Be-A-Famous Writer’ Contest. MrsP.com is an award-winning and free interactive digital storybook destination. Mrs. P is played by TV actress and author, Kathy Kinney, from the Drew Carey Show.
MrsP.com was founded in 2008 by Hollywood team Clay Graham, Dana Plautz and Kathy Kinney. They were brought together by a love of reading and a desire to help spark that same passion in young people everywhere (Source: MrsP.com). I had a chance to speak to Ms. Kinney about MrsP.com and their upcoming 3rd Annual Be-A-Famous Writer’ Contest. She said the group started the contest to encourage children to celebrate the joy of reading and writing – as well as to inspire them.
The contest is open to children 4 to 13 years of age. There will be two (2) Grand Prize winners’ stories that will be read by Mrs. P and original illustrations will be created. How fun is that! The contest submissions open September 1, 2011. Ms. Kinney encourages children to enter the writing contest by stating “If you can tell a story – you can write a story!” Go here to read more about the Be-A-Famous-Writer Contest: http://www.contest.mrsp.com/Default.aspx.
Melissa Northway is a mom, writer of children’s picture books, and has written a storybook app and book called Penelope the Purple Pirate. She supports the Be-A-Famous-Writer Contest and is donating signed Penelope copies to the first 10 submissions received in the 4 to 8 years of age category. Go here to see the fun prizes the final contestants will win: http://www.contest.mrsp.com/Prizes.aspx. You can read more about Penelope and Melissa at: www.melissanorthway.com.