If you consider when you learned to read and when you learned to write, you’ll probably discover that you are unable to separate the two because you learned them simultaneously. These two skills are so interconnected we fail to realize how much one is influencing the other.
In order to gain a better appreciation for their interdependency, let’s examine how the following activities promote both reading and writing.
Reading and Writing
It may seem overly simple, but the truth is that reading promotes writing and writing promotes reading. So, the best advice for nurturing these skills is to read and to write. The more your little one does this, the better she will become at each. As a child learns to read she begins to understand that different “sound chunks” (phonemes) make up words. Think about how often you tell your beginning reader to “sound out” a word. Now consider what happens when you give that child a piece of paper and a pencil and let her write. How do the words she creates appear? Most likely, they will not be spelled correctly, but you can guess what she was striving for by “sounding out” the letters. She has learned that by combining sounds she can create words and when these sounds are strung together they can be read.
Getting More Specific:
I found this clever idea from Fun in Fourth. This is an especially good activity if you want to expose your child to different genres of books. As kids “sample” the different books at each table, they write down information such as the title, author, thoughts on the first few pages, clues as to the genre of the book, and more. This exploration and recording exercise strengthens both reading and writing.
Another fun activity that nurtures the reading/writing process is creating a newspaper. Help your child brainstorm the different sections to include (sports, entertainment, weather, local news) and encourage him to be creative in his layout and design. Creating the different stories will allow him to hone is writing skills and as he arranges the paper he will read and re-read his work until he is satisfied.
Spelling Word Story
Most elementary school students have weekly spelling words. Have your little one create a story using each of his words. Not only will he get practice in spelling the words, but he will also learn how to use the word in context and have a story to read afterwards.
For a giggling, good time, you can’t beat Mad Libs. This classic fill in the blank game is great for sharpening grammar and reading skills. Who knows? The wacky tales may also inspire your kiddo to write his own stories.
Simply put, we write what we know. As we read we are gaining knowledge. Encourage your kid to take notes on the book she is reading. This practice will not only help to solidify what has been read but will also increase reading comprehension.
Reading and writing really do go hand in hand. One skill naturally sharpens and reinforces the other. If you’re looking for more ways to promote reading and writing, check out these books that teach the writing process from This Reading Mama.