Learning to Write

Read the transcripts:

When people worry that their child isn't going to "learn to write," two different directions surface.

Are you talking about creative writing and written story telling?

Are you talking about the mechanics of physically writing (i.e. handwriting?)

Both matter - although, IMO, one matters much more than the other.


Mechanics of Writing

It's good to remind yourself that good handwriting has NOTHING to do with intelligence. (Case in point: Doctors.) And as we move forward with digital technology, handwriting may be even less and less useful. Still, it's helpful to be able to read those letters from Grandma... unless she's Skyping, or FaceTiming!

But some kids do want to learn to write.


Joyfully Rejoycing | Joyce Fetteroll

I Was His Scribe
Shine | Anne Ohman

Odd to see this here on an unschooling page, but if your child WANTS to write, but can't form letters yet very well, this program can help you create customizable pages they can trace over.

Learning to Write

Learning to write as unschoolers - Unschooling Guide Cover


Are you still wondering how unschoolers learn to write?
This THIRTY page guide will help you explore the possibilities and see writing in a completely different way from how you learned in school!

Some of what's in this Unschooling Guide:
  • Creating a writing-friendly home
  • Ideas for supporting a home full of writers
  • Learning styles and writing
  • Searching for stories in the community
  • Your own relationship to writing
  • Ways YOU can explore and model writing more
  • Deschooling and writing
  • Reasons our kids may want to write
  • What if they don't?
  • My son's path from non-writer to a degree in Journalism
  • Practical suggestions for writing
  • Ideas about publishing kids' writing
  • Extra Resources and Research links
  • Fun and inspiring memes about writing

From the Unschooling Mom2Mom Facebook Group:

When parents come here looking for how to help their child write, we have to differentiate between two specific aspects of writing:


🔸 Handwriting
🔸 Creative Writing
Many kids in school learn to dislike writing - or any other subject, really - if they're exposed and expected to master it before they're ready. And that often happens with writing.


When we pressure them too soon, a variety of negatives are set in motion:
...the child is unsuccessful
...the child feels pressure to perform to keep you happy - instead of having an internal motivation to learn to write
...the child internalizes that something is wrong with them when they're just not ready
...And something many of us can relate to: the child internalizes the idea that "I'm not good at writing." or worse, "I hate writing."


Unschooled kids have a huge advantage here. Delaying formal academic instruction - something recommended by educational research - is easily done in our homes. We can wait until our children show signs of being ready. It's up to parents to resist the urge to compare their child to anyone else's. Everyone is on a different timetable.


✏️ Think about ways to make your home more conducive to writing - what’s available and accessible?
✏️ Lots of developmentally appropriate (and fun!) activities develop the fine motor skills needed for writing.
✏️ Story dictation is a fun way to help with the creative writing side of this.
✏️ Remember that story development is happening all the time with playing make believe!
✏️ NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is in November!
More details for how unschooling kids learn to write...


The Unschooling Mom2Mom Podcast:
Unschooling and Writing
The podcast dives into this in more detail, helping you see some quick ways to reframe it all. This link gives you the podcast but also the transcript to read at the blog:
The Unschooling Guide: Learning to Write
This guide is perfect if you’re really struggling with how this is going to work. We ALL want our kids to be able to communicate in writing - unschoolers are no exception! But there are definitely some things to do and some things NOT to do - and I’ve shared that in this Unschooling Guide