Writing is a developmental milestone for preschoolers.
Before crafting sentences, young children develop writing readiness skills prior to being able to write with confident strokes.
However, it’s not only about grabbing onto a pencil to write. To support their development, children are exposed to an array of pre-writing activities to strengthen their fine motor skills and dexterity in preschools in Singapore.
These are precursors to actual writing and are associated with language acquisition and literacy. Definitely fundamental in preparing them for primary school life!
Did you know that there are fun ways to build those pre-writing skills? You can try these play-based, sensory ideas with your kids at home too!
10 ways to make writing fun for preschoolers
1. Knead letters
Use your favourite modelling compound (many parents like the Play-Doh brand) and get kneading! Let your child roll snake-like doughs to form different letters. How about spelling out their name?
2. Sticker mania
A fun activity that calls for hand-eye coordination - simply use a marker to draw straight lines, zig-zag lines, letters and even shapes on a piece of paper. Your child will first need to turn on his pinching skills to peel off those stickers before accurately pasting them along those lines, and voila!
3. Cut, cut cut!
Did you know that cutting activities support a child’s pre-writing development? Cutting skills are not fully developed till about 6 years old, so do be patient.
Involve your child in cutting paper during crafting sessions, let them cut their spaghetti or simply draw straight lines on paper for them to cut. Gradually make it more challenging – they can cut zig-zag lines, squares, and circles.
How about making a beautiful card with all those cut-outs?
4. Sand tray words
This slightly messy sensory activity makes writing feel different. Is your kindergartener learning his spelling? Skip the paper and pencil – practice in the sand tray to play and learn!
5. Finger stamping
Let those chubby fingers stamp away with ink pads! Create a pretty art piece, trace letters and decorate away! Don’t mind the mess – play is one of the best ways for kids to learn writing skills!
6. Pop-it letters
Most kids own at least 1 Pop-it toy, or you can order online for cheap.
Here’s what you can do:
Use a permanent marker and write on each bubble. It instantly becomes an Alphabet Pop-it which you can use to help your child identify letters.
Shout out letters and wait for her to search and pop! Or, spell simple words and even “pop” secret sentences to you for the more confident learners!
7. Draw a story
Drawing or scribbling requires finger dexterity, which is fundamental to fine motor skill development and the ability to write.
Let your child enjoy free play by drawing what he likes and maybe make a story out of it. This piques their creativity and imagination while achieving fine motor skills for their little fingers.
Have a good laugh together and enjoy the parent-child bonding time. Win-win!
8. Doodle diary
Besides reading books, how about starting a doodle diary or gratitude diary with your children?
Apart from cultivating a sense of thankfulness and opening an opportunity for parent-child conversations, this interactive activity lets him draw and/or write to express his thoughts and feelings.
9. Draw/write a book
How about inviting your child to remake her favourite storybook? With some clean paper and writing tools, fold A4 paper into halves to let your child draw and write simple sentences on each page.
Once that is done, staple them together to make a book. Parents can do this together with their child to guide them, or the independent ones can make their own books on their own.
This encourages early learners to see how writing and drawing can bring their thoughts to life and further motivates them to write.
10. Write notes
When your child is ready to write sentences, try scribbling notes with each other! It’s okay if her spelling is incorrect – encourage her to spell what she hears whether phonetically or not.
It is about practicing and nurturing that confidence too.
Fun pre-writing activities help kids improve their handwriting, and some of the best preschools in Singapore incorporate them into their curriculum. Children develop in their own time and eventually when they embark on primary school, their handwriting improves.
Little Footprints Preschool in Singapore: specialised writing and reading programmes
Little Footprints Preschool believes that it is essential to create opportunities for reading and writing as they synergise to nurture strong readers and writers. Through their Librarian’s Code specialised programme, the “Bond Thru Reading” component lets children journal their thoughts on the book they bring home to read with parents.
With consistent exposure, our children practice and hone writing skills in addition to the language and literacy module under their multi-faceted core programmes.
When your child graduates from K2, he would be well-equipped with essentials skills such as writing and reading which will be helpful for a smooth transition to Primary 1.
Book a tour at your preferred centre to find out more about Little Footprints Preschool's programmes and curriculum.
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