Developing creative little writers

Top Tips on Developing Creative Little Writers

Written by Charles Lea
Top Tips on Developing Creative Little Writers

Encouraging your children to write will help their imaginations to flourish, handwriting and spelling to develop, and hopefully help to build their confidence.

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” – Stephen King

But how do you do this?

One of the most important things is to inspire a love for reading.

encourage kids to read, read together

Now for the writing bit and a bit of story structure. There are three main parts to every story:

  1. An interesting character
  2. A wonderful plot
  3. A special setting where all the action can take place.

Coming up with one of the above is a great starting point. As this will help your young writer to think of all the elements to their story.

Often, if the main character is themselves this is a good starting point (but not always). Let them think what they would do in their story.  Friends will often make an appearance too.

Explore different plot ideas. Some examples include: overcoming a baddie who is up to something naughty, or having to go on a journey to find something thats leads to an adventure or perhaps a mixture of both.

In terms of setting, try and get their imaginations flowing. As well as having adventures in the usual places such as at home or in school. Think about places they have visited recently: maybe a museum; a castle; a beach; a forest or maybe even think about creating magical worlds. What things could happen in those places? Trigger their imaginations by asking them questions.

create magical worlds

Here are some tips to help them write superb stories.
  • Reading lots of books can inspire their ideas for a story. Do they have a favourite genre or an amazing role model of a character they look up to?
  • Ideas can flow from visiting interesting places and events such as a castle or museum, or from a particular time of the year e.g. leading up to Halloween or the magic of Christmas can be a great basis for a story.
  • Spark their imaginations by asking them questions e.g. what could happen if they had to spend a night in the museum?
  • Give them time and let them think. Day dreaming is a big thing for writers. It looks like we aren’t doing much but we are actually constructing great worlds in our imagination.
  • Buy a special pad and pens for writing story ideas down.
  • Let them also draw their ideas down if they want to.
  • Help them plan their story so they know how it ends before they write it. Often stories are not finished because we cannot think what will happen at the end which is a waste. E.g. do they escape from the museum or do they beat all the baddies and save the day.

Let their imagination flow

  • Have patience, sometimes seeking ideas for what happens next can be difficult. Everyone can suffer from writer’s block, even little ones.
  • Try not to tell them what to write but help them with ideas if they get stuck. Suggest what other people might do in the same situation or refer to a book or  film that they like.
  • Encourage them to finish their story and ask them to read it out. Boost their confidence by saying how good you felt the story was.
  • Help them type it up and possibly submit to a writing competition such as Radio Two’s 500 words.

Happy writing!

“You can make anything by writing.” – C.S. Lewis

Charlie runs Read Now Write Now, a literacy organisation which runs many projects to inspire people to read and write including creative writing workshops for both children and adults. He has just finished writing his first book, Great Grisly Hall.

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