It's year-end holidays again and like all stayhome mums, i'm thinking of what to do to keep my 9 year old son, Amir, not glued to the computer & tv all day long. It means bonding time with me. This holiday i'm focusing on giving him a WRITING LIFE. Pam Allyn, the Executive Director and founder, LitWorld and author of What to Read When, has inspired me with her book Your Child's Writing Life.
1. Keep writing tools & a small notebook in a basket/box everywhere in the house.
- in the kitchen: encourage him to write about food that he eats, write recipes(while you cook) & grocery lists before going shopping with you. Who knows this is the beginning of Masterchef in the making!
-in the living/family room: encourage him to write about you(the most important being in his life!), his dad, his siblings, family activities(past & future). Before long you'll be getting 'I love u mum' ( & also 'I hate Kak Long') notes.
- in his bedroom: encourage him to write about his friends, his school, his dreams & his imaginary world.
A reminder to parents: support & encourage your children to write with enthusiasm. Focus less on their spelling errors and sentence structures. We want them to enjoy expressing themselves. We want them to become confident with their writing abilities. By giving them this opportunity you are helping your children grow emotionally & develop critical thinking.
And according to Pam Allyn, the secret of how to raise a writer is for us to be dedicated listeners. So if your child is not comfortable to start writing, let him talk, tell you stories. Then slowly get him to pen his thoughts.