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How Can Journal Writing Help Children Express Themselves?

Updated: May 11

There is a buzz around creative writing classes with good reason. These classes help children express their imagination in the form of stories. That fits into the general definition or association with 'creative writing' as a concept. Unfortunately, the tag of judgement and constructive feedback too tag along which can be a deterrent for some children if not all. Journal writing can be a good alternative to enable children hone their writing skills. Here is how.

writing in a journal

Do you remember what it was like to wait for your English teacher to return your written work with comments or a grade? If the paper was filled with red marks, the whole world seem to be crumbling inside. Worse if there is a comment on top that reads, "Can do better."

"Sure I can do better, but how?" The answer to that question rarely comes about and the pattern continues thus reenforcing the fact that writing is a tough task and the teacher is someone who is not going to be easily pleased.

But does the teacher need to be pleased? Does it entail finding out what sort of writing would please her or would changing one's writing approach to make it easy for any reader to read and understand be a better approach?

Changing the perspective

We write to convey something to some one at a later point in time.

It needs to be:

  • easy to read and understand

  • contain interesting information perhaps even better if it has useful information.

  • impactful - in some cases result in desired action or inspire a particular course of thinking.

Writing down ideas and at the same time making them sound really good is a lot of multi tasking for even an experienced writer, let alone a school going kid. Yet the expectations are high. They are given little time to turn out quality writing while experienced writers get more than one draft to work on and the support of a good editorial team.

Make your child the reader who will read their own writing later

This is what a journal helps to achieve. A personalized journal in which they can freely decorate, write anything- words, sentences , quotes, questions even. This is not for someone to read and judge but something personal in which they share something they will read later. Needless to say what gets written is often something important to them and care is taken to write it well. When they read it a later point in time, there is room for them to assess their own writing. This paves the way to change and confidence gets built over time.

Asking to read their journal however puts them back on the judgement platter thus reversing all the work gone into developing a positive association with writing. Instead keeping an open communication channel in which the choice is theirs to share their journal with the parent, goes a long way in encouraging self expression.

They may not write everyday. Enabling them to hold ownership of their journal not only builds responsibility but also a feeling of satisfaction.


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Both weekday and weekend batches are available at the Young Readers' Club for the 8-12 age group.

NEW!  Writing programs for the 8-12 age group- Young Writers' Club Jr.  

The Young Writers' Club program for the 13-15 age group offers a weekly platform to read and discuss curated articles from the news, observe writing approaches and practise one's writing skills.

 NEW! Musings from the Young Writers' Club is an online magazine showcasing the work we do at the Young Writers' Club.

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