Parents and teachers often confuse the terms good writing and good writers.
The current educational system focuses more on improving the writing process but doesn’t work on building writing skills in the child on an interpersonal level early on.
This leads to kids following a rulebook for writing but not perfecting the process of effective writing. This is exactly where the line between writing well and being a good writer becomes obvious.
While the idea of good writing is as simple as using the right words and creating perfect sentences, there’s much more to improving the writer in your child.
What makes one a good writer?
A good writer is one who goes beyond getting A’s on essay writing. A good writer is one who:
- Can use imagination and build ideas effectively while writing
- Knows how to structure thoughts into short and long pieces of writing
- Uses idioms, phrases, and other literary tools to enhance their writing without being mechanical about it
- Can build a flow that keeps the reader hooked
- Has an inherent, almost natural-seeming ability for putting ideas clearly into meaningful sentences
Though this list is much longer, we’ll spare you further details and get right into what can make your child a good writer.
How to foster the “Writer” within your child?
Here’s how you can improve the writer in your child, with just these 5 easy, intuitive steps:
Teach them how to research thoroughly and smartly
This is the most important trait of a good writer – they are a good researcher! And, research is more than just googling key terms, free pdfs, or white papers. It’s about finding the right facts to solve a problem or to substantiate an opinion in a systematic way.
Here is how you can help your child explore a whole new way of thorough researching before writing:
- Encourage them to read up as many contrasting opinions as possible before building out their own opinion
- Introduce them to various verified sources of information. For example, for demographic facts about the USA one must prefer to use official sources like www.usa.gov over Wikipedia
- Encourage your child to read up books offline at the school or public library apart from using the Internet
- The habit of citing the sources of information can add credibility and is a trait of good writers
- Ask your child to also use primary research like surveys, polls, group discussions, etc. to further enhance their researching skills while having some fun and meeting new people!
2. Encourage imagination and creative visualization
Being able to imagine and visualize vividly is one of the key traits of a good writer. This is also critical to being able to use idioms, phrases, and analogies effectively to make writing more compelling and engaging.
Consider the following examples and note how the two pieces look different:
- The leadership doesn’t want to invest in producing a new range of Mexican food citing low demand. The marketing team of the leading French restaurant chain however feels that having Mexican on the menu will make customers explore Mexican food and will ultimately build demand.
- The leading French restaurant chain is facing the classic chicken & egg problem! The leadership team feels that there is no demand for Mexican food at their restaurants, while the marketing team feels that the demand will start building once the new Mexican menu is introduced to customers.
Which one is more interesting to read? Option B, isn’t it?
3. Hone the supporting skills to remove any writing blocks
A relatively ignored aspect of building a good writer in a child is honing supporting skills. Having a good vocabulary, a strong command of grammar, familiarity with common literary devices, are some of the skills that make a writer confident. When they don’t have to worry about checking grammar rules over and over again or browsing through a thesaurus for synonyms, children write freely and creatively. Here’s a simple (non-exhaustive) checklist of these skills for you to get started:
- Use of mnemonics to remember facts or a large amount of useful information
- Functional vocabulary in geography, science, world politics, etc.
- Literary devices like personification, alliteration, etc. make a piece of writing much more engaging
- Grammar and punctuation rules
- Quotations or famous sayings useful in illustrating ideas better
If you need support with any of the above, read on our next point.
4. Get them a coach/ tutor who can make things fun
Getting a tutor for your child can make the process of becoming a good writer fun. A writing tutor can help your child in more ways than you can imagine. A tutor can:
- Ensure discipline and make sure your child sticks to a routine – critical for developing any habit that becomes a part of them eventually
- Give structured and constructive feedback to continuous improvement.
- Help your child appreciate different writing techniques, use figurative language to enhance their writing, and help them discover their own writing style.
Quick fact: Did you know that there are four main types of writing: expository, descriptive, persuasive, and narrative? A tutor can help with all such nuanced writing styles!
Explore the Talentnook Writing Academy to help your child develop these writing skills
5. Help your child develop critical thinking skills
Lastly, critical thinking skills and observation power are the two most underrated and yet most important of all qualities in a good writer. There are 7 commonly known critical thinking skills – observation, analysis, interpretation, reflection, evaluation, inference, explanation, problem-solving, and decision making.
A good writer is not the one who just jots down facts and laces them with an opinion or two. They go deeper and analyze the facts, reflect on them, read existing opinions and then present their recommendations or ideas.
Are you now all set to improve the writer in your child? Talentnook is here to help, always! Visit the Talentnook Writing Academy and explore our specialized writing programs for kids of grades 2-9. Explore Writing tutors for individual focussed classes in writing, reading comprehension, essay writing and so much more!
If you’re not sure how to find a good writing tutor for your kid, don’t forget to check out our detailed guide “Finding the best writing tutor“