How to Encourage Creative Writing in Kids

Last Updated on August 30, 2016 by Diane Hoffmaster

This post about creative writing in kids isn’t going to automatically turn your child into the next best selling author a few years down the road.  However, creative writing is a skill that schools are pushing like crazy right now because it helps get them into college.  If you remember back a few years to those dreaded college essays you had to write, you will understand why creative writing in kids is so important.  So, how do you get your child to sit down with pen and paper to create something in written word? I will share a few tips that I have followed over the years that might help.  Keep in mind that my children are now teenagers.  One of them finds creative writing to be the best thing since sliced bread and lives with her many journals stacked up by her bed.  The other scores amazingly well on creative writing assignments but it is strictly WORK for him.  He can do it, he just has little desire to do it for fun.  Depending on your child’s personality, they may or may not end up loving their next creative writing assignment but at least you can say you did everything in your power to encourage them!

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How to Encourage Creative Writing in Kids

How to Encourage Creative Writing in Kids

Stop over scheduling them:  Creativity cannot be rushed.  Kids today are way over scheduled with school, sports, chores, work, and other after school activities.  Sometimes, creative writing in kids needs to be nurtured by doing absolutely nothing at all.  Give them time to be bored and see what pops into their minds.

Give them the tools to succeed:  A special journal and a few nice pens go along way towards encouraging creative writing.  Who wants to just jot stuff down on boring old notebook paper, right?  Let your child pick out a new journal and a few other supplies and they will WANT to write in it.

Make it a game:  Sometimes, kids just don’t know where to start on their creative writing journey.  Turn a large mason jar into a jar full of inspirational and creative topics.  When it’s time to work on creative writing skills, tell them to pick a topic from the jar. Here are 365 creative writing prompts to get you started!

Be encouraging:  When working on creative writing in kids, it’s very easy to want to pick apart their grammar and sentence structure.  Don’t worry so much about the technicalities of writing.  Praise their creativity in the use of descriptive words or unique scenarios.  Give gentle encouragement and maybe a few suggestions but your overall message should be positive if you want them to keep working on it.

Slowly introduce more structure:  When you think your kids have finally caught the creative writing bug, it’s time to start teaching a few things like how to build a story and creating engaging content.  Teach them to write first and edit later to let creative juices flow but you do need to do a bit of editing.  Here are a few resources that might come in handy for teaching kids to write creatively.

Creative Writing Techniques for Kids: a Step-by-Step Guide to Writing a Story Easy step-by-step instructions to help your child create a story.
Printable Summer Writing Practice Worksheets This is good for fairly young kids.  Print writing sheets to let your kids write a story based on a picture and prompt.
Ten Summertime Writing Activities to Create Memories This is perfect to help your child turn their love of writing in a diary into actual creative writing.  Here are some writing activities that will help your kids preserve special memories.
If you set aside a time and place for writing, your child may surprise you with how often they put pen to paper.  Encourage them to keep a journal (and respect it’s privacy!).  Give them gentle but honest feedback and if they are okay with it, share their work with others.  Showing their latest story to grandma may be just the boost they need to really get them excited about the printed word.

Do you have any other tips for improving creative writing in kids?

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  1. That can definitely be a challenge. Neither of my kids really enjoyed creative writing but my son had a harder time than my daughter.
  2. My daughter is only 4, but I encourage her in her journey towards writing to make up stories. Soon she will be able to write her stories down!
  3. These are all great ideas! I enjoy seeing the creative words my children can put on paper. It is so much fun.
  4. Great tips!! Kids writing creatively is so important!! It seems to be a skill that not many are excited to learn any more.

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