Long before they can learn to write children need to master the skill of holding a pen or pencil.This usually begins by doing a few scribbles with a chubby crayon.
This primitive form of writing is known as mark making, just having fun with any form of arts and crafts
can help with hand to eye co-ordination, another skill that needs to be achieved before children can start writing.
I used to give my children and the ones that I was child minding junk mail to draw on, often I noticed that they would mark make in the space asking for a name and address, all good practice for later years.
Scribbles quickly become more sophisticated and so drawings of familiar things such as a family member soon develop.
Once a child starts school they learn to write significant letters enabling to attempt to write their name,
followed by more and more words which become sentences as confidence builds.
Praise children when they attempt to write but also be aware that if they are not supervised when given mark making equipment they may use them on walls or furniture, most of which can easily be removed, my motto was to keep art materials out of my living room and encouraged the children to sit up to the table for such activities.
When I was at junior school I won a hand writing competition, sadly now as an adult my writing is not so neat meaning that I tend to use a computer for writing or write in capitals so it can be read.
Please share any experiences of your children’s early attempts at writing and drawing.
I would like to thank Jade Marie Ryan, Kirsty Butland and Sarah Knight for allowing me to use their photos of their children’s work in this post.
As always questions/comments are welcome.