"Kid Writing" Teaching Tips for Kindergarten Helpers
Kid Writing, © 1999 Wright Group/McGraw-Hill/Eileen Feldgus & Isabell Cardonick
Adapted by Mrs. Carol King

1. Picture - "Tell me the story about your picture." OR "What's happening in your story?" If child can't think of anything, point to part of the picture and say "Tell me about this part."

2. Repeat the child's story back as one complete, simple sentence. Get the child's OK on the sentence. (As the child progresses, try to vary the sentence structure.)

3. Stretching process - "Watch my mouth." Emphasize (louder and longer) the sound that the child is to write. DO NOT separate the sound from the rest of the word. Ask, "Do you hear any letter sounds?" Allow the child to write what he/she thinks the letter(s) are. DO NOT tell the child what letter to write.

4. If the child has no idea what letter makes the sound, encourage the child to use a magic line (a horizontal blank line) in place of the unknown letter(s).

5. If the child hears the letter sound but does not know how to write the letter, refer to the alphabet chart. ("You can find letter t under the toothbrush.")

6. Word Wall - If you come to a word in a child's story that is already on the Word Wall, say, "Where can you find that word in our classroom?"

***Do Not Praise kids for accuracy during their writing. Just remind them to write what they think they hear. Praise will come when you get to the Adult Writing step.

***Do Not stress over capitals and punctuation in their writing. They will see it in the Adult Writing.

7. Adult Writing - It is important to use proper letter formation during your Adult Writing and use capitals only where they belong.

Using your finger, point out and praise anything that the child has written that is accurate or close to accurate, WHILE you do the Adult Writing. ("Great, you heard the t in top, and you figured out the p at the end of top.") Ignore their mistakes, praise their successes!

Read the adult writing back to the child twice as you point to it. Encourage the child to join in.

Your help means a lot to us and the children. THANK YOU!

Kid Writing Helpers

Writing Growth Stages

Stages of Writing Development