Writing books can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make it. I think that simpler tends to work better most of the time. The core benefit of writing books with children is developing and practicing literacy skills and imagination. This should happen as often as possible. At my house, simple is most likely to happen often and complicated is most likely to happen on a day that mom is feeling really good about things. This is why my focus here is on writing books instead of making books.
However, sometimes it is important to make a book particularly special for a child. Be sure to always give plenty of encouragement, praise and reinforcement as children engage in the process of creating a book. Don’t focus on the end product as much as you focus on their efforts and growth. Also, look for ways to reduce frustration over the process.
How to encourage writing books:
- Have some pre-made blank books available to your children as part of their art supplies
- Write letters to family members about exciting things that happen in your day or week
- Prompt children to make up a silly or different ending for favorite book or movie
- Prompt children to follow the story patterns of favorite books or movies
- Use story paper
- Be willing to write the words for the books younger children illustrate
- Accept and encourage invented spelling with beginning writers
Here’s a .pdf of a book my son created one morning while I was sleeping in. He was 6 years old when he worked on this and it was one of the first times he did a book alone.
How do you get your kids involved in writing and storytelling?