Writing is an essential skill for this generation. Email, texting, written reports … A facility with language can only be a good thing. Since strong writing shares several traits, the good news is that even if writing isn’t your thing, there are still many things you can do to help your child become a strong writer. We’ll take them one at a time over the next several weeks.
One of the most important traits of good writing is VOICE. It’s also the trait that tends to get children the most tangled up. Is voice his personality on the page? Is it the same for everything she writes? Is it the same as Point of View? How can a writer tell if her voice is strong? What can she do if it’s not?
The best way to encourage a strong voice is to use examples. Ask your child to tell you what it’s like to walk to the bus stop or the mailbox in the rain or snow. Then read her this wonderful book, Straight to the Pole, and ask her which is more alive. If you need another example, ask her to tell you about going to the grocery store or picking berries or apples. Read her Blueberries for Sal and listen to the amazing voice.
Once you and your child discover the magic behind a strong voice, you’ll be able to identify voice in all types of writing. Why not make it a game to see how many strong voices you can find!