“at my hs IL tW my SG BI at The prK”. This is writing of a kindergartener that should be celebrated! Parents may not be able to decipher all words so that the story makes sense. Students in primary grades use what is called “inventive spelling”. They begin to write down the sounds they hear. This particular sentence when translated says, “At my house I like to ride my skateboard at the park.” Great sentence with a prepositional phrase (where it happens). The next step for this writer is to ask him, “What other sounds do you hear in like?” and so on.
Meaning is more important than mechanics.We need to let children explain their stories before we begin instruction on mechanics. The conventions of grammar, spelling, and format are important skills to acquire. But attention to them belongs at the end – not the beginning – of the composition process. Think of how you feel when you’re telling a story to a friend and she corrects your pronunciation! This interrupts the flow of your story and curbs your enthusiasm for telling it. We speak and write to communicate with others. When our audience seems less interested in our thoughts than in the surface details of our presentation, we feel our story is flawed and we feel personally flawed as well. Our desire to communicate has been diminished.
Celebrate your child’s writing each and every time you read it, and you’ll be surprised at how much more she’ll want to tell you – in writing!