The Right to Write

Image from Teach Well, Teach Often.

I have a few students in my class who enjoy going to the writing centre almost every day. At the table they use the crayons and colours available to create and write their books. They draw, they copy words from the board, they write their names and weave stories around their pictures. They are excited about their writing and with creating messages of their own. They enjoy sharing their efforts with their friends and with me.

Their enjoyment and exploration leads me to think of a time when children did not have the opportunity to experiment with the written word. These children were never exposed to crayons, pens and paper. Instead they were prohibited from entering the enchantment of the written word and of expressing themselves on paper. Experimentation with letters was allowed only among the select few.

I am happy to live in an age where we all have the right to write. From a young age we can experiment with writing down our thoughts, our feelings, our experiences on paper. And at this moment, I am thrilled to create the opportunities for children to pursue their right.

(This post was inspired by the Five Minute Friday prompt: Write)

ยฉ Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

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16 thoughts on “The Right to Write

  1. It is certainly a vital part of accelerating cognitive development. Without reading and writing, only a tiny fraction of potential ideas can come across to the individual, leaving the deprived ones permanently disadvantaged.

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    1. I agree colonialist. The inability to read and write places a person at a great disadvantage. Their exposure to ideas and experiences is lessened and they are unable to experience the world the way literate people are able to.

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    1. Yes they are. I do not remember there being so many beautiful picture books when I was a child. Even the teen reads these days are more interesting than when I used to scan the bookshelves for a read.

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  2. It’s good to expose children (as you are doing in your class) to writing. I taught university level courses, and some of the students were functionally illiterate in that they really hadn’t learned to write.
    I worked one on one and led seminars for the Writing Centre at one of the places I taught. For some of my students there, English was a second language. But many were kids who had never really learned how to read and write enough to be in a college-level course.

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    1. You know there is something wrong with the education system when children finish school and they are barely literate. Personally I think grammar is an important tool for writing well and that is one of the things that is not taught to children at school. In addition, they should be encouraged to write regularly – and they should receive regular feedback on how to improve their writing.

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  3. I don’t think my original reply “stuck” to the comment spot. I said that the world is now voweless,w ith 142 the magic number! Not that social media, or the access to information is all bad for writing, learning, but I wonder how much correction they get.
    I know I’ve lost my grammar, sentence structure, etc as my writing skills lose their correctness. I’m glad you instill a sense of writing can be done without a smart phone, or a tablet. I will say that my spelling mistakes (I spell phonetically) have become less and less with built in word red lining!

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    1. I believe that texting and social media like Twitter has affected the spelling and grammar of people’s writing. This is why I love blogging – it encourages people to write the way thoughts should be expressed and, as I have experienced myself, one’s writing can only get better.

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