3 Ways to Make Writing Fun for your Preschooler
Preschool-aged children are often ready to start learning how to write out their ABC’s and basic words, so we encourage that at Bright Scholars Early Learning Academy. As a parent, you want to encourage that in the home as well. For at home practice, some children may be content with sitting down at a table and trace letters in a workbook, while others may be absolutely miserable if made to do this. So how can you best help your child with writing? There are many creative ways to encourage writing skills with your little ones. At Bright Scholars in St Cloud, FL, writing is one of the things we focus on with our preschoolers, and we want to share a few ways you can help your child enjoy learning to write.
1. Start with their name
When introducing writing to your kids, you want to start with something familiar and relevant. You can start by pointing out the individual letters in their name when you see them in everyday scenarios- like pointing out letters on food labels or words in books they’re reading. For example, say “This cereal starts with the letter C, and your name starts with the letter C too!” Help them practice writing their name whenever and wherever, not just at a designated writing practice time. If they’re coloring, have them write it out in crayons on the page. If they’re in the bathtub, try writing the letters on their back for a fun (and possibly ticklish) activity or let them “write” on the wall of the tub with their finger. Kids of all ages love writing their own name, so it’s a good place to start that can get them excited about writing. If your child can’t write their name, or write it well yet, it’s ok. It’s not a skill that has to be mastered for a while and may not even happen until kindergarten.
2. Let them use their fingers
Writing doesn’t have to start off with (or end with) pencils or crayons. Lots of young children love using their hands and fingers to create and write. Finger paints on construction paper is a great place to start. Trays filled with paint or sand are fun for tracing letters or small words. Not only is using fingers to write in messy stuff fun (for most), it also helps to develop the strength and dexterity that is needed to be able to grasp a pencil or crayon later on.
3. Be creative and use different tools
The more your child has fun with it, the more they’ll be willing to practice it, which can help him or her begin to write words. If you have students that do not enjoy finger painting (like we mentioned previously) or having messy hands, then there are a wide variety of other tools for them to use in their paint or sand for practicing. Cotton swabs work well for writing in paint or using paint to write on paper. An unsharpened pencil or even a stick they picked up from the yard works well in sand.
If you are working specifically on the formation of certain letters, consider forming them out of scraps of paper cut into strips and then glued on to a piece of paper or allow your child to trace letters in glue and then sprinkle them with colored sand or glitter. You can also use play dough for forming out letters with him or her. The possibilities are endless- we recommend checking out Pinterest ideas if you need a new and creative method to try out.
At the end of the day, don’t push your preschool-aged child too hard about writing or criticize how they’re doing. It’s not an essential skill yet and you don’t want to deter them. Each child learns at their own pace. Some 3-year-olds learn to write their name, while others can’t effectively do that until they’re 5-years-old and in Kindergarten. We can teach, encourage, support, and lead, but we can’t force things.
Writing is one of the skills that we work on in our preschool programs at Bright Scholars Early Learning Academy in St Cloud, FL. The goal is to make learning fun, enjoyable, and challenging. We accomplish that through hands-on activities and intentional, set aside time for skill-building. If you’re looking for a preschool for your child to grow, learn, and socialize in a safe environment, you’re looking for Bright Scholars. Contact us to request enrollment or to ask for more information.