When your child is about three or four years old, it’s time he began learning to write. If he’s reluctant, it means he needs a little support and encouragement from you. With your support and help, your little fellow can develop strong writing skills that will help him communicate well with time. Now that it’s time to teach your child to write, do with lots of love and encouragement so that the experience is positive and worth repeating.
However, he may be extremely excited to learn something new from you, his parent. At this stage, learning to write is an important skill as schools will ask if he knows how to do this. They now grow their vocabulary and understand letters of the alphabet, numbers and symbols as much as they notice individuals in their lives. So, it’s not surprising to see your little one scribbling on sheets of paper and trying to write.
Tips to Encourage Your Kid to Write
Here are a few ways by which you can teach your child to write:
Strengthen your child’s motor skills: With good motor skills, he will be able to hold a pencil in his hand and form letters with a good grip. To strengthen his motor skills, give him the habit of doing finger painting, playing with modelling compound and stringing beads.
Set the writing surface for him: When your child begins to write, he may find it difficult to use both his hands for writing and to hold the page simultaneously. To help him along, provide a slanting surface so that he can have greater wrist support and hold the pencil better before writing.
Begin by allowing him to scribble away: The moment he’s old enough to walk or hold things, give him a pencil and paper and let him scribble on it just for fun.Once he does this for some time and you feel he’s ready to use pencils and paper, teach him to make shapes like straight lines, squares or circles. When he does this, match the shape he draws with the name for it.
Write out a word for him: Write out a word for him to see and ask him to copy it. You might like to write it out using dots or dashes so that he only goes over it to form the word. This is a small measure of success for the child, which will encourage him to do more. This will teach him to get the right direction of strokes.
Correct him immediately: If his rendition of the word shows letters wrongly written, correct him immediately so that the learning is complete.
Point out the link between printed words and individual letters:If your child already knows certain letters, ask him to recognize them. By recognizing them early, it becomes a good foundation to begin writing.
Introduce him to capital letters: If children are shown large-sized letters, they learn faster as the letters get imprinted on their memories much faster. Besides, capital letters require one to start writing from the top and make the pencil move down. By printing capital letters on a card, he will recognize each one of them along with their individual and uniform strokes.
Spell out his name: Now, teach him to write his name in block letters. As you write each letter, call it out and show it to him. This makes the connection absolutely clear to him. Now, ask him to do it. With practice, he will learn to write his name.
Move on to lower case letters: After he shows proficiency in writing words in capital letters, you can teach him to write words in lower case. With daily writing sessions, he can master writing skills.
Praise his efforts: This is extremely important at this stage for without encouragement, he will not want to take his learning forward. Praise him for the effort he makes and the result he achieves.
Tips to teach your child to write:
Read books suited to his age: Select books with several pictures and words and ask your kid to point out select letters. Now, together match the letter with its sound, such as A for apple.
Read the same books over and over again: Repetition plays a great role in reinforcing a lesson with children. He will become familiar with short and everyday words like apple, dog or cat. Though he may not be able to read sentences through, he can point to pictures and capital letters and match the sound of the concerned letter.
Explain why your child is given a specific writing task: If your child knows what he’s going to get out of a particular writing task, learning it will be that much easier.
Create areas of your home where he can scribble: Set aside crayons, pencils and paper in some parts of your home where your little one can sit and scribble all he wants.
Does your child like bright colours? Let your child choose between bright markers and light crayons—whichever he finds a better grip. The stationary they use should be non-toxic and safe to use, in case they put it in their mouths.
Keep him enthused: Praise his work and drawings every time. It shows you care for his effort. You should also hang up his creations on the fridge door or frame it in your bedroom.
Lead by example: If you want your child to learn to write, do all your writing work in his presence, such as writing out checks, making shopping lists or writing short notes. Once he sees you doing this, he’ll want to mimic you.
Give him dry writing surfaces: Give him dry writing surfaces like a chalkboard or erase boards. These will help him wipe and re-write on the same spot.
Make it interesting: Make his learning experience interesting by using fridge magnets and alphabet blocks.
The learning process for your toddler should never be strenuous. It should be pleasantly paced so he doesn’t feel the pressure, yet he learns something every so often. Let him move at his pace and learn in a fun and interesting way.