5 Ways That Reading Helps Writing
1 Reading presents opportunities to talk about authors
Children often don’t realise that writing is actually a record of what people want to say. It’s a way of sharing their message when they can’t just tell it by talking face to face. When your child is reading, you have the opportunity to discuss with them the fact that a real person (the author) has written this text for a particular purpose. You can talk about the author, why they’ve written the text and who they want to share their ideas, story or information with. You can discuss how you or your child might have done things differently, for example, chosen to have a boy as the main character instead of a girl …or ended the story differently..and why.
This will really benefit your child’s writing because they will begin to see themselves as real writers. They will start to think about the choices they have as writers, who they are writing for and how they can make adjustments to get their message across more effectively.
2 Reading presents opportunities to build vocabulary
It’s a good idea to read books frequently to your child. If you choose books that are a little above their independent reading ability you will be exposing them to more complex language and a wider vocabulary than they would get in their grade readers, and this is a really good idea. They can only have a go at expanding their language in writing if they’ve encountered more advanced features through reading.
3 Reading presents opportunities to build imagination
There are thousands of brilliant books available for kids of all ages. The writers who produced them are hugely creative and imaginative people. Their imaginations were fired from reading other people’s books, as well as from their life experiences. The more books your child reads, or listens to, the more imaginative they will become, and the easier their ideas will flow when writing.
4 They see examples of what they’re focusing on in writing
When you want to teach an aspect of writing, for example, how paragraphs are constructed, it is really important to show examples of it in action and discuss the features of it with the child.
By doing this you raise your child’s awareness and interest in it in a non-threatening way. If you suddenly expect your child to produce some aspect in their writing without a lot of discussion about it and without seeing examples of it in a text written by somebody else, you’ll be disappointed!
5 They see words spelt correctly
While reading, kids are being exposed to the correct spelling of words. 80% of all students need careful, explicit and repetitive instruction in spelling.
Seeing the correct spelling of words as they read reinforces what they’re learning about spelling. This spelling knowledge gradually shows up in their writing.