The Importance of Teaching Good Writing Skills
to Children and Young Adults
The following is an excerpt taken from a workshop that I gave to a homeschool organization on the importance of creative writing, how to write research papers, how to be creative in teaching and implementing writing lessons, and to avoid making your students hate writing. There are four parts which will be following int the months to come. Please do not hesitate to comment or leave a question if you are struggling in the area of teaching your children creative or formal writing.
Cahaba Academy Workshop-Teaching Creative Writing-For Home Schoolers
- The importance of research papers:
- Identifying the types of learners:
- Opportunities to use a journal:
- Creative writing ideas:
- Writing opportunities:
- Quenching the writing process:
Good writing is essential to success in any type of career that your children will likely want to pursue.
If you plan to go on to graduate school, regardless of what field you choose, you will be expected to write many papers, most of which will be 30-40 pages in length. You will be expected to write papers that are clearly written, that have a clear thesis and that demonstrate careful and considerable research. Those who have learned to write such papers as a part of their undergraduate education will be in a more competitive position to be accepted to graduate school and to perform well in graduate school once they are there. Simply having what you might think is a decent grade point average isn’t enough, now. One of the main reasons is grade inflation.< /i>
It is because of grade inflation that many companies have begun to test job applicants; they simply don’t have much confidence that the GPA means anything, anymore. Some companies have begun mandatory writing programs for certain employees.
The need to be able to compose well-written papers and reports extends beyond graduate school (including law school, medical school, etc.). If you were, for example, to get a job with an investment agency, you might be given an assignment to submit a report on a particular company or sector of the economy that the investment firm can use to advise its clients. If your report is not good, you are not going to find yourself employed for very long, because businesses cannot afford to waste their time and money on people who are not competent. The same would be true if you were working for a law firm, environmental firm or as a teacher or administrator.
So, writing a good paper is not just an irrelevant exercise that you need to do in order to get a passing grade. It is an exercise through which you learn: (1) how to research a topic, (2) how to think critically about that topic, and (3) how to coherently express your understanding, analysis and conclusions about the topic to someone else who may or may not be as informed on the subject as you are. The more you write quality essays and papers now, the more you work to improve your research and writing skills, the better your writing and your analytical skills will become. However, the less you do, the less competitive you will be, and the more likely you may look back in later years at your time and regret the opportunity you wasted.
During the past six years the amount of written documents that crosses the average workers desk has increased by 600 percent. To get the attention of the reader the document must be clear, concise and professional. It must convey the main point within the first paragraph. The most important points must be made with the least number of words possible. Additionally, the tone of the document must match the needs of the intended audience. Some of the best-paying careers are dominated by majors which demand excellent communication skills.
By 2015 America will need approximately 3,000,000 more teachers. Other needs include: Network systems and data communications analysts and administrators, computer software engineers, all types of medical positions and college instructors. All of which will require excellent writing skills.
As Christians we have taught our children that whether we eat or drink, we do it all for Christ. We should strive to be the best when it comes to written communication, because it is the foundation of our Christian walk.
“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
1 Corinthians 10:31