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How can I get my 9 year old 4th grader to write better and have it not be so boring? How can I get my 9 year old 4th grader to write better and have it not be so boring?

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Matt Copeland eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Help your 9-year-old to find topics that he or she wants to write about, things that are natural interests or hobbies. If your child plays baseball, have her write about about baseball. If he likes pizza, have him write about pizza. Once a topic is identified, help your child write different works for different audiences and different purposes. Write a persuasive letter to the city council encouraging more baseball leagues, or the school lunch program requesting more pizza. Write a how-to manual for playing baseball or making pizza. Write a narrative about a favorite baseball game or a particularly good pizze. Write that narrative for friends, then again for adults, then for someone who has never heard of baseball or pizza.

 

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Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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How can I get my 9 year old 4th grader to write better and have it not be so boring?

How can I get my 9 year old 4th grader to write better and have it not be so boring?

One method is an ancient one employed by all past masters of arts: Have your children imitate their favorite books! What's a favorite? "Where Wild Things Are"? "The Secret Garden"? Have them read a favorite (or you read it to them) and then have them write their "own" story like the favorite--imitate it. Be sure to discuss plagiarism first, stating that this imitation is just for fun and cannot be done for school or the public! This technique can really charge some creative brain synapses and build dendrites!

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ask996 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I too would caution you as to how you proceed with your 9 year old. Does your child pursue writing on his or her own, or do you recognize quality writing as an important life skill? As a teacher consultant for the National Writing Project, I know of many students--both child and adult who stopped writing because of devastating experiences with regard to writing teachers. Please understand the importance of supporting any effort of writing at this age.

 As the earlier post mentioned Nancie Atwell, I will refer to her as well. Nancie Atwell addresses the idea of writing territories. Writing territories is a list of different things about which your child could write. Pets, friends, toys, favorite books, fun activities, vacations, and etc. The idea is that developing writers will write more and write better if they develop this skill writing about things that interest them. As writers select topics from the territories and then write about them, they will cross the items off the list. As writers discover more things about which they can write, they add those to the territories list.

Encourage any and all types of writing, and understand there is a difference between drafting pieces and publishing pieces. Let your child experience the creativity of drafting, and then let your child choose what he or she might want to take from a draft to a more polished piece of writing.

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drmonica eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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At the risk of sounding a little harsh, unless you are your child’s classroom teacher, it really is not your job to critique your child’s writing. It could be devastating to your child to know that you think his or her writing is boring. Please be very careful with your criticism, which I am sure you are doing. A fourth-grader has a lot of developing to do as a writer, so don’t be too concerned with his or her skills in developing the audience’s interest at this early stage. I was a...

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keerazee | Student

Hi!  At first when I read your question, I thought you meant that your 9-year old's writing is boring!  I thought that was a bit harsh - but then I realized you mean that your 9-year old finds writing boring . . . right?

Well, what helped me when I was a kid was reading.  My mother didn't have much money, so we paid regular visits to the library.  There were lots of magazine for kids that had writing contests, etc.  I also always had at least two or three pen-pals all throughout my childhood, and that helped me to tell a story on paper.  There may also be fun storytelling performances you can bring your kid to.  Getting hooked on telling stories might prompt her or him to want to write.

 

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