Question: My son is going 3 years old and most of the children in school are writing and colouring quite well but he is simply not interested in writing. I have a problem getting him to sit down and learn. How do I get him interested and engaged in writing? (Worried Mum)
Answer: Dear Worried Mum, every child has his / her strengths and interests. At such a young age, parents should refrain from comparing the child with his peers as such a focus may affect the learning attitude of the child. Some children may need more motivation to engage in writing due to their different interests and personality. For a child who enjoys more physical activities, he can sometimes find writing a boring task.
Here are some strategies that parents can adopt to encourage the child to write:
a) For children who do not like to write with a pencil, parents can try something more fun and make writing a fun activity. For example, doing finger or hand painting, or using big brushes with paints to draw simple shapes such as circles, triangles to make faces, houses or rockets.
b) For a child who does not like to sit and write, give him the opportunity to write on sand or colour in the bathroom using paintbrush. Remember, writing activities need not be limited to pen and paper. It is important to first get the child interested in some writing or colouring activities. Play-doh activities are also great for strengthening finger muscles.
c) Parents should give praises and encouragements when the kids have successfully done or complete a piece of work using any form of writing.
d) Parents or care-givers must refrain from pressurizing the child in holding the pencil “properly” or criticize the child’s work.
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