WRITING AS A LIFE SKILL
At Agia Sophia we early on in our history valued and emphasized the importance of writing skills. Some of our students have WOW-ed us over the years by the quality of their writing.
For the most part students are writing stories, although there is also some inclusion in our writing program of various genres in order to familiarize students with those styles and types of writing and also as a way of encouraging those interested in more essay writing to develop that skill.
In writing stories, we stress plot development with the understanding that to have a plot there must be a problem or predicament that gets either solved or remains unsolved. We teach them the difference between fantasy and reality in the process and that even fantasy must have a reasonable aspect to it. This can be a struggle for some. The younger students are the more gaps they leave in a story, so we try to teach them how to fill in with greater detail.
In evaluating children’s writings, we use the 7 Traits system that copies of can be supplied to you upon request so you can be involved in the process of helping children develop their writing skills.
We believe that, though most children will not make their living writing stories, they will likely need to be able to communicate with others effectively in the work place as well as at home and in normal human interaction. Developing a plot assists in discerning the main idea of material being read or listened to. Expressing oneself well aids in gaining the respect of others in the workplace. Additionally, we might agree that the world needs more clarity across the board. This too can be developed in practicing one’s writing skills.
With this understanding in mind, we spend valuable class time allowing children to write freely their ideas in the hope that in the end they will profit from the exercise in various ways.