How to Improve Your Child’s Writing at Home By Ms. Lenore Look
Whenever I want to improve my writing, which is always, I read.
It’s widely understood that our best writing teachers are the books that resonate with us. Good writing is an open roadmap to an author’s process, offering in every word and turn of phrase, and even in the placement of commas – instruction – if not inspiration – for how we might tell our own stories. Unlike cooking, in which the best recipes can be kept secret, literature is unfailingly, the blow-by-blow DIY manual.
Enterprising souls have even distilled the process into steps and formulas and taught them with labels such as “The Hero’s Journey,” or “argumentative,” or “expositional” essays. These are templates that beginning writers are often told to fit their ideas into. As a writing teacher, I’ve taught these rules to my students, sometimes with fairly good results, and other times with dismal ones. In general, they’re not a bad way to start because exam and term papers must follow the “academic” formulae, and so they’re quite useful in that sense. As a writer, however, I observe none of them. I make no thesis statements. I offer no evidence. I avoid conclusions.