Term 1 Dates
January 10 - March 17, 2019

Contact us to find out more.
Developing Writing Skills: Nursery to Kindergarten

Home > Inside Hess > Articles > English Artcles

Developing Writing Skills:Nursery to Kindergarten

The development of writing, just as all development, follows certain stages. Children will pass through all these stages until they finally write. The stages are milestones and not rigid deadlines. Children move through them at a different pace, some move to the next stage quickly and others take a while to get to the next step. But, it is important not to panic, and not to force your child to the next stage when they are not ready. Pushing your child to write will make them hate the process and fear the act of writing. Writing can be made fun and it's essential that you play with different ways to write, which will encourage your child to enjoy the process.

The process begins at approximately 3 years old, with scribbling . Encourage your child to scribble. Scribbling strengthens fine motor skills and will soon turn into a series of lines and circles that will form writing. Your child will tire quickly and will not be able to write neatly if their fine motor skills are not well developed. Here are a few tips on how to strengthen your toddler's fine motor skills.

•  manipulate playdough or clay

•  puzzle play

•  colouring with crayons (not sharp pens and pencils)

•  finger painting

•  painting (holding a paintbrush will also help stroke development)

•  blackboards / whiteboard (children develop stronger fine motor skills when they are standing and holding the marker or chalk)

•  mix paint and dishwashing soap and paint on windows

•  tear paper (tearing strengthens small finger muscles) and glue it onto a piece of paper to make a collage

Your child will then start to mock-write , by copying shapes like crosses and squares and finally circles. This is the basis of writing and in a child's mind they are writing. So we need to praise their writing and encourage them to do more of it. Do not criticize their ‘writing' and tell them that it's not ‘real' writing. Instead, develop their fine motor skills by:

•  using scissors and helping them to cut on a straight line

•  beading (stringing beads, to develop finger dexterity)

•  arts and crafts to develop motor skills

•  read books together and ask your child to find certain letters on a page

•  help your child to trace letters in books with their fingers

By the time your child reaches kindergarten, they will be ready to start writing letters on their own. Again there are a few tips to encourage your child to write. If you ask your child to just write letters and words over and over again, they will tire easily and get bored. Make writing fun and interesting and your child will develop a love for writing which will help them in the future.

•  First, make sure your child is grasping the pencil correctly: the t humb and forefinger should not overlap and should form a loose "o". The pencil should rest on the third or fourth finger. The wrist should be neutral, not crooked at an angle. Triangular pencils ‘force' the child to use the correct grasp and can be bought in most stationery shops.

•  Short pencils are easier to control than long pencils.

•  Make sure that your child uses downward strokes; it's easier and far neater than working upwards.

•  Buy a notebook, and let your child copy or write the grocery list, this will make them feel very important!

•  When your child draws a picture, help him/her to label the picture with different words (mum, dad, tree, my house).

•  Encourage him/her to make little books, “My family”, staple a few sheets of paper, and have them draw a picture for each page, and write a sentence for each page; “This is my mum”,

•  When writing sentences, encourage your child to use spaces between words, by using their finger, e.g.: ‘This (finger) is (finger) my (finger) mum.'

•  Make your child aware of punctuation. Read a book together and shout out the punctuation, e.g. ‘There are big boats, (comma) and little boats (full-stop).' Take note of capitals and full-stops.

•  “Air Write”; write a letter with your finger in the air and ask your child to guess what you have written. Or write a letter on their backs and ask them what it is.

But most important of all, is that you praise your child for everything that they do. If they feel that they have accomplished something great they will continue to work hard and enjoy learning. Never use writing as a punishment. But, always encourage neat and legible writing, by complementing and rewarding, with stickers, high fives or even a hug! Happy writing!


Enrolment Information
Feel free to contact us for further information.
English Programmes
Our fully integrated English Programme.
Holiday Programme
Holiday Programmes
Our Holiday Programmes enhance learners' love of English through engaging games and activities. Our short courses are theme-based and child-centred.
Free Trial Lesson!

We are currently offering a free trial on the first 2 hour lesson! Call Us Now!


For more details, e-mail us at: enquiries@hess.com.sg or
by telephone: 6333-6915

  Copyright 2018 © Hess Education International. All Rights Reserved.