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10 ideas to encourage writing – By Cambridge University Press


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Handwriting is something that should be practiced little and often. In this digital age it is often challenging to find opportunities to get children to practice at home rather than in a school setting. Here are 10 ideas from Cambridge University Press, Partners of National Stationery Week, to encourage and inspire your child to write.


1. Shopping Lists

This is a great task that can be adapted depending on the age of the child. The younger children could draw the items, the older children can write down the names or just add one or two items if they can’t manage the whole list. You could also take them to the supermarket and tick the items off the list as they go around the aisles. An activity with a real purpose and they can see that they are being helpful.

2. To do lists

Children like to be helpful so you could ask them to write down your daily “to do” list. This could include making breakfast, pack lunch, going to nursery, school, and work. Alternatively you could ask them to write their own “To Do” list. This promotes independence and also makes them think about their own tasks.
You could get them to write down all the things they have to do in the morning before they go to school or nursery and include pictures. For example get dressed, brush my teeth, have breakfast etc. They can then put this in the bedroom as a reminder!

3. Cards/postcards

You could ask a relative or friend to send your child a card or postcard and then suggest that your child replies. You could buy a postcard of your local town or village and get them to write a few words or just pictures on the back.

4. Holiday Journals

Your child may like to create a holiday journal or scrap book where they record their activities and adventures. They could keep pictures, tickets, leaflets and stick them in their journal, adding notes. It may be too much to write every day, depending on their age, but they could do it at the end of the week and write the best things that happened.

5. Book or film review

Show your child some book or film reviews online and suggest that they write one for their favourite book or film. Ask them to describe what the book or film was about; what they particularly liked about it and what they didn’t like. Finally ask them to score the book or film out of 5.

6. Play date or Party invitations

Encourage your child to write invitations to his or her party. Alternatively to write a card or note to invite a friend to come over and play.

7. Notes to your Mum and Dad

Write a short note to your child and you may be surprised that they write back. Keep the note going back and forth between you, folding it each time so that they have to open it to read the message.

8. Pen pals

If you have any friends or relatives abroad, suggest your child writes them a letter. A younger child could draw pictures and write their address whilst older children could ask about the place that they live and write a description of their own country and include photos. Take them to the post office to buy the stamp and post the letter together. Hopefully they will continue to write to each other and become pen pals.

9. Best Ever Menu

Ask your child to write down a menu of all their favourite foods. What would be their dream lunch or dinner? Encourage them to write it down and decorate their menu. Alternatively they could just write a menu with what they are having for lunch or dinner that day and give one to each member of their family.

10. Handwriting competition

If your child is age 4 or over they could enter our handwriting competition. They have to write out a poem in their neatest handwriting and send it back to Cambridge University Press. Winners will be announced in National Stationery Week and they could win a stationery gift pack if they win.

Click here for all the details.

We love these ideas from Cambridge University Press, let us know on our Facebook or Twitter pages @NuNotebooks if you have tried any out, or if you have any of your own ideas using the hashtags #WritingMatters, #NuNotebooks and #NatStatWeek