Early_Writing_Tips

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A guide to helping your child write sentences
Writing a simple sentence
Think of a simple sentence with a maximum of 5 words. Ensure that the words in the sentence
follow a regular pattern of spelling or are key words (see sheet attached), for example:
The man has a dog.
I went to the shop.
The big cat is black.
The dog went to sleep.
Tell your child the sentence. Hold up your hand and spread your fingers.
Say the sentence, pointing to a finger for each word, as shown below. The gaps between the fingers
are the “finger spaces” we leave between words. Ask how many words there are in the sentence.
Ask your child what we need to start our sentence with (capital letter). Point to your first finger and
ask your child how we write that word. Then ask them to write it down. Draw their attention to the
gap between the fingers to remind them to leave a finger space, then ask them how we write the
second word. Continue for the rest of the words, and ask your child what we need to remember at
the end of our sentence.
to
the
went
shop.
I
LJK
Reminding children to use finger spaces
Put your fingers together so there are no spaces. Ask your child if this is how we should
write our words.(No finger spaces between words.)
Open your fingers again and ask what the spaces between the fingers are (finger spaces).
After every word your child writes, point to the gap between your fingers and get them
to say it is a finger space that is needed.
Incorrect spellings
If your child has made a mistake with a spelling, but you can still read what it says (it is a
phonically plausible attempt at spelling the word), do not correct it at this stage. Our
priority is getting your child to hear the sounds in words an write them down, even if the
spelling is not correct. Writing a sentence requires your child to use a lot of different
skills at the same time. We will correct spelling at a later stage in your child’s
development. The most important things to concentrate on at the moment are:
Starting the sentence with a capital letter.
Sounding out every word carefully and writing down the sounds they can hear.
Remembering spaces between words.
Using a full stop at the end of a sentence.
Making it a bit more interesting
Children love to use different coloured pens to write with. Try getting your child to write
the same sentence again using a different colour pen.
Let your child use a different colour pen for every word. This makes it easy to read the
words, even when they forget to use finger spaces.
LJK
Ideas of CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant)words to use in your
sentences
sun, bun, fun
dog, log, fog
hat, cat, mat
bed, red,
fan, pan, man
pig, dig, big
box, fox
ten, hen, pen
Ideas of CVCC/CCVC words to use
belt, tent, sink. milk, lamp, frog, flat, plug, sink, drip, drop
Tricky words
I
go
no
to
the
he
she
me
we
be
was
you
they
are
my
her
High Frequency words
the
and
a
to
said
in
he
I
of
it
was
you
they
on
she
is
for
at
his
but
LJK
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