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|BY India Burgess

Have you ever encountered a time in your life when it was difficult to verbally express how you felt? You’re not alone – we all have! Children go through it all of the time. As they mature and come to the realization that their thoughts and opinions may not be accepted, they tend to keep their thoughts to themselves.

So how do you reach someone who may feel apprehensive about discussing what’s on their mind? Kristen Bellows from Parents Space suggests creative writing as a possible option.  The benefits she describes explain why literary expression is so liberating.

Academic Development

Creative writing develops reading, writing and language skills! While writing, children are exploring words and grammar.” This is a long term skill that will help kids later in life as they begin to write professionally in various capacities.

Creative Growth

Not only is this fun for children to do, but it also allows children to practice how to think ‘outside of the box’.  It encourages children to use their imaginations. It broadens their thought process and helps them to see the world from a unique perspective.

Social Development

“Creative writing develops self-confidence and identity. By creating something themselves and exploring different types of characters who face a variety of issues, children learn about themselves as well as seeing that they have the ability to create something unique and praise worthy.
When a child is writing about a particular character they are putting themselves into the ‘shoes’ of that character.”

Emotional Development

Children can develop emotionally from creative writing. They are given the opportunity to express particular thoughts and feelings safely that perhaps have been upsetting.  They also learn how to have more empathy for other individuals. When a child writes about a character, they automatically place themselves into the “shoes” of that character. “How do they feel?  How do they behave? All of that teaches children about how to be empathetic towards others in the real world.”

Creative writing gives children of all ages the chance to express who they are beyond your typical conversation. When reading what they’ve written, you can explore how they think, feel, and reason. It’s hands down one of the best tools to understand kids on a more personal level.

Reference: 5 Benefits of Creative Writing for Children – Parents Space [Web log post]. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.parents-space.com/5-benefits-of-creative-writing-for-children/

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