Building Early Childhood Writing Skills

Typically, children begin to recognize letters around age two or three. From fine motor skills to remembering shapes, building early childhood writing skills involves many components. Here are some fun, age-appropriate ways to build your child’s writing skills.

Play alphabet games

There are many ways you can make a game out of learning the alphabet. Some examples include: arranging magnetic letters on your fridge; writing letters on a piece of paper and having your child trace over the shapes; or holding a scavenger hunt with letters printed on cards.

Provide age-appropriate writing materials

Young children may need different pencils than older children do, and some children have an easier time writing when using rubber pencil grips. Ensure they have lots of paper as well.

Ask your child to write with you

If you’re writing out a shopping list or adding items to the family schedule, ask your older child to help you. Support them trying on their own, or write out an example for them to follow.

Empower your child to explore writing activities

Support your child’s early writing skills by encouraging them to practice in a way that’s interesting for them. For example, some children are drawn to activity books where they can practice their letters, while others prefer to write out stories they create.

Be patient and supportive

Early childhood writing skills take a long time to develop. Be patient and let your child discover the shapes of letters and words at their own pace. You can offer support such as writing out letters for your child to trace, but providing time, space, and encouragement will help them improve.