Saturday, August 14, 2010

Helping Reluctant Writers

The man who can make hard things easy is the educator.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson
How do you help your child with a school subject
that is particularly difficult for him or her?

I won't go into the sordid details, but let's just say that for two
of my children, writing is not a pleasant experience. 
For anyone within a 1 mile radius. 

So what do I do?
Trick them, of course.
Make it a game.
Make it fun.

Here is a game we played the other day:
It's called Let's Argue.
Basically, it's a debate on paper.
Pick a topic, and each person argues why their choice is better.
The topic could be the best reptile, favorite holiday, swimming or tennis, whatever.
My son and his friend wrote 5 arguments in favor of their favorite reptile.
You can have a judge declare a winner or forget the judge
(no judges at my house when 2 children are debating ...
only when it's adult-child debate in which case the adult loses).
My son had his started and finished within a grand total of 5 minutes
with no crying.
I must confess that his was the less wordy of the two examples I have here.
If you know my son, this is truly and utterly miraculous.

Now listen up, Mom (or Dad):
Don't get picky, don't criticize, don't correct spelling,
don't feel like you have to teach them everything about writing in one activity.

Just let it be fun. 
Kids who write and read a lot, eventually become better spellers.
I Promise.

I found this game in a book called Games for Writing by Peggy Kaye
 It is one of my favorite teaching books of ALL TIME.
There are others versions for learning, reading and math.


Kristen, The Pajama Mama said...

thanks for sharing! that sounds like a great trick. i mean game.

Donna said...

Great idea. I'm lucky on the writing front, but math homework causes tears with my youngest. Do you know of any games to help with that?

Le Chateau des fleurs said...

Thank you so much! I will do this! My son doesn't like writing...Super idea!
Following you back :)
Big hugs

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