How important it is to be able to write? No, clever clogs, not War and Peace, a letter is good. Today is the day of the text and email,’ ru cumin out l8er’? Pardon ? In text speak it means ‘ Are you coming out later’? What hope do these kids have, all of them, marshmallows and jelibeans alike? It’s a whole new language that seems to change as soon as I get used to it.
Jelibeans do have their fair share of problems with writing. Normally nothing at all or copious amounts of words on at least half the rain forest! Take a guess at which one I'm guilty of. Although both sexes can and do have varying degrees of problems,it's the boys who tend to come off worse. Boys have a tendency to get letters back to front and generally letters become mixed up and jumbled, making little sense.
Factual information is far easier to write about than fiction. Give us a period of time in history and we’ll research it and come up with a fantastic project. Fiction isn't so easy, it involves thinking and that’s what always lets us down. Dates, times and places fascinate us, we'll write forever if the subject grabs us, if not then you may as well forget any masterpieces, it just isn't going to happen. Remember a lot of us get very hyper-focused and prefer to hone in on our chosen specialist subject. It's just about finding a good level for you.
Vocabulary and grammar play a big part in writing, I’m terrible for always adding capital letters needlessly, commas are lovely too, BUT the icing on the cake has to be !!!!!!!!!!! oh and??????????
There’s no shame in admitting that you may have difficulties in reading and writing. Spelling and punctuation are minefields. Ask for help, there really are some lovely marshmallow and jelibean friends out there who will help you. If your jelijunior is struggling then drag them along too. Care and share means exactly that. Share your knowledge with other people, you have a voice, and your opinion is valuable. Writing gives you yet another choice, it gives you confidence and pride. You really aren't alone, the world is full of people who can’t write and barely read. Don’t be fooled, there are some very important people out there with minimal literacy skills. They keep it hidden but WHY?
Keep writing simple and easy, bullet points are a great aid, a bit like scaffolding on a building. Build a structure in your head, the simpler the better. Work out what you want to say and put it in order and then cut it down.
One thing that really helps jelibeans to write is a computer. Many jelibeans just love computers, and turn out to be real experts, churning out web-pages and all that complicated stuff that I haven’t got a clue about. My two youngest sons make me feel embarrassed when they waltz in and correct the red lines that somehow walked all over my page in the middle of some typing.
But apart from just using the computer for games and surfing, it’s useful to learn to type on it. Keyboards are so much easier to handle for dyspraxic jelibean fingers than old-style typewriters, and we love the wiggly lines that come under words when we spell them wrong and we have the spell-check working. It’s a miracle! Help your jelibeans to write by encouraging them on the keyboard. But please don’t hide the computer up in their bedroom or let them dominate the one you’ve put in the living room, because it’s so easy for us lot to get obsessed with the latest games or chat rooms, or anything we shouldn’t really be doing!
Another thing that will help with writing is to keep lists. We LOVE lists. So play list games with them – listing all the fruits you can think of beginning with the letter…..C or whatever, and watch them go for it! Lists are good because we can make them in single words – not a lot to confuse us in a list.