Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Five Ways to Celebrate "Encourage a Young Writer Day"

In addition to National Siblings Day, April 10th is also Encourage A Young Writer day. This day is particularly important here at ONCEkids, who is all for the support and encouragement of young readers and writers. Like many other parents, we strongly believe that writing and reading beginning at a young age helps children to acquire and expand skills in self-expression, imagination, vocabulary, and critical thinking- even into and throughout adulthood. 

You can acknowledge this holiday by encouraging your young writer with five different fun and though-provoking games. So whether your child is an avid reader and writer or dreads the thought of even having to pick up a pen, these five games are sure to spark some energy and excitement in your 
child on this special day!

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1. Poetry Puzzler
This fun activity is the perfect way to facilitate critical thinking in both you and your child, not to mention serve as a great way for you two to spend some time together! To play this game, have your child write down five fun words on a piece of paper while you do the same. After you're both finished, exchange lists and write poems using the words you've been given to test imagination and definitely get a few laughs!

2.  Pass It Along
This fun, interactive game requires three or more people. The rules of the game are that each person begins a story on a piece of paper and passes is along to the next person to continue. Sounds easy enough, but there is a twist to the game to make things a little more interesting! Before passing the game, you fold the piece of paper so only the last sentence is written and the person has to attempt to correctly continue the story with only that bit of information. Once the paper has been passed all the way back to you, open it up and read the hilarious twists and turns the story has made to on its journey back to you!

3. Write a Short Story
Encourage writing and imagination in your child by having them create a short story. This will also help them to feel a sense of accomplishment, especially if you collect their stories and put them together in some sort of book or binder. 

4. Free Write 
Often times, a child or even a student will complain that they do not have anything to write about- especially if asked to write a short story. Solve this problem by having your child do a free write. The objective of a free write is to sit down and write solidly for a particular set of time, which may vary depending on your child's age. There is no plot or assigned subject during a free write, the goal is simply to write about anything and everything that comes in to the child's mind. Often times, participants are told to not even think but to just write. This activity helps to promote creative expression and remind children of the joys of writing in a world where often times writing emphasizes grammar and structure, which children find painfully boring. 

5. "If I Were…"
My personal favorite game! Help your child's imagination to run free with this next game! For this activity, have your child write down a list of people, whether they are celebrities, superheroes or their favorite cartoon character, and then have them write detailed descriptions of all of the things they would do if they were that person. This causes a child to dig deep into their imagination and use creativity to dream of a world as superman or a Disney princess. 

This little known day is set aside to celebrate the art of writing. It can sometimes seem like the focus of writing for children is typically on grammar, so this is a unique opportunity to slip in some writing which becomes increasingly important as they get old- finding their voice!

Has your family received a NookKindle or iPad this year?  Find Fujimini Adventure Series award-winning books here.  Great family-friendly gifts

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