Regular practice creates better writers: Summer is a hot time to practice writing skills

March 17, 2011 12:08:40 PM PDT
With summer just around the corner, children are enjoying the warm weather, fun activities with friends and vacation time. But, summer can also be an enjoyable learning experience. The summer break provides many memorable moments, and writing about them is a good way to record those memories and practice writing skills at the same time. Parents tend to focus on their children's reading and math skills, overlooking that writing is an education fundamental. It's fast becoming the forgotten 'R'. This is unfortunate, as writing is an important part of every facet of education, not just in English class. Writing proficiency can have a major impact on other subject areas, too.

Summer vacation provides an excellent opportunity for children to explore their creative writing skills. Dr. Richard E. Bavaria, Ph.D. and senior vice president for education outreach fro Sylvan Learning, has developed the following tips to help parents encourage their children to write over the summer:

Pick an Engaging Topic
Persuading your child to write over the summer break may be easier if you help them identify fun and engaging topics. Suggest some timely subjects.

  • For example, Independence Day on July 4 or Canada Day on July 1 are good opportunities for your children to explore their own patriotism.
  • Ask them if they know what patriotism is, and what it means to them. Encourage your children by helping them with some research about America, its history, people and places.

Give Story Starters
Sometimes the most difficult part of writing can be getting started. Help your children write their patriotic essays by giving them topic ideas, such as:

  • I am proud to be American/Canadian because…
  • On the Fourth of July/July 1, my family and I usually…
  • If someone asked me what my country means to me, I would say…