Friday, February 10, 2012

Your Child's Writing Life by Pam Allyn

Pam Allyn, a literacy educator and founder of LitLife and LitWorld, aims to teach parents how to develop their children's writing skills in Your Child's Writing Life.

The focus, she argues, has been on teaching kids to read when, in actuality, reading and writing go together. Writing fosters emotional growth and critical thinking in even very young children but parents often do not actively encourage the very young to write.

She offer practical, inexpensive tips for getting children of all ages to write. She gives, tips, for instance for setting up a "writing corner." While this is not essential, creating a space as well as providing writing tools (a variety of markers, pens, pencils) will encourage writers.

She offers a variety of writing prompts for each age group and lists what's developmentally appropriate for each age level.

Allyn encourage parents not to discourage their children from using "new media" tools such as internet, e-mail and ipads.

Lastly, in chapter 5 she lists 20 great books that can serve as "mentors." Children will often emulate their "mentors" until they find their own writing voice.

Allyn's book will remind parents that all children are "writers." Using her five writing "pillars," parents can help their children develop their writing skills.