How to Teach Your Child to Write a Story

By April Lee
You can teach your child how to write a story.
You can teach your child how to write a story.

Children who learn to express their thoughts in writing often display better organizational and communication skills as a result. Teaching a child to write a story improves his organizational and communication skills, as well as encourages creativity, critical thinking and problem solving. Writing stories helps him be more prepared for the professional world, where good writing skills are often critical to success.

Read with and to your child so that he becomes familiar with the process of storytelling. Set a routine and read at least once a day. Picture books help younger children visually follow the story.

Suggest alternate endings to the stories you read to your child. After your child has become more familiar with storytelling, ask him to tell you different ways a story could have ended or how the story could have been better. This allows your child to exercise his imagination and begin to understand the components that go into writing a story.

Encourage storytelling by making a game of taking turns telling different parts of a made-up story with your youngster, or simply asking her to tell you a story. Learning story creation by first telling stories will help her make an easier transition from talking about ideas to writing them down.

Provide materials for your child such as pens, pencils, crayons, markers and paper so she can draw and color pictures to accompany her story.

Ask questions about the story you and your youngster are reading. Questions about who the characters are, where they are going and what they want will help your child flesh out the details of the story. If he is stuck on a particular point, ask him questions to guide him through the rough part, so he can continue the story.

Provide your child with a word bank to use while writing her story. A word bank is a list of interesting words written on index cards or displayed on a poster to use as a reference. Sometimes a child can have difficulty finding a variety of words to use in her story. Providing a word bank with different nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs will encourage creativity and keep your young one from repeating the same words.

Provide helpful suggestions on ways your child can improve each story. The first few times a child writes a story, it might not make sense or it may not be grammatically correct. Avoid being overly critical. If your child believes his stories aren't any good, he may not want to write anymore.

Tip

Never write the story for your child. While you should provide direction, your child should come up with his own ideas and write the story himself.

Give plenty of time to complete a story. Avoid rushing your child, as this can make him feel pressured or overwhelmed.

About the Author

April Lee started writing professionally in 2009. She is the marketing writer for an independently owned cheese business. She attended the University of North Texas and majored in English.