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Build

Writing Muscle


20 Activities and Ideas to Get Kids Writing

Grades 2 and Up



Smashwords Edition
Copyright 2011 Sandy Fleming

All Rights Reserved

Build Writing Muscle

Introduction


Writing, in spite of the intentional misspelling, is a big part of the “three R's.” With the societal focus on literacy during the past few decades, it seems like writing has taken a back seat in our collective consciousness, though.


This is causing some real problems in daily living for people who did not develop writing skills as children. They have difficulty expressing themselves beyond a few sentences at a time, it is hard to fill out job applications, and many have a difficult time creating reports, letters, or other documents required by their employers. Spelling accuracy has declined to the point where it's common to see misspelled words on signs, in newspapers, on the internet, and even in important documents.


The decline has been evident for many years. One local school office displayed a poster promoting the school's commitment to excellence, but the word “excellence” was actually misspelled to read “excellance.” More than one child has come home with hand copied spelling lists containing misspelled words to learn, in spite of being approved by the teacher in charge. Taken all together, these are symptoms of a much larger problem.


Our schools are very focused on measurable learning, and while we all agree on what makes good writing, it's extremely time consuming to evaluate it. A lot of tests of language arts have moved to multiple choice corrections of mechanics or spelling, and away from the writing and evaluation of longer works. High school and college students have fewer required writing assignments and those that are required are shorter and less complex because it is more efficient to grade them.

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