By rwhitemarketing, Jul 12 2017 12:29PM
We have recently been doing some training on how to raise early achievement in Literacy and one of our events was a Doodle Play Day.
On this day we worked with a local school to support parents in understanding how early mark making really helps children to develop the fine motor skills they need to start writing.
Adults will often call the earliest attempts at mark making and drawing, ‘scribble.' However, young children are very interested in their marks and the movements that make them.
These marks will gradually develop into forms that children recognise, for example circular shapes and lines. Movement and form come together as children think "If I do that, I will see a circle or a line here."
Children will eventually move on to representing things they know and an awareness of the distinction between writing and drawing emerges.
Activities such as making marks in shaving foam and cornflour, big and small marks with paint, pens and chalk, manipulating playdough, making large movements with ‘light sabres' and even just spreading butter/soft cheese on toast/crackers all support a child's development in writing.
The aim of our play day at the park, was to show parents how all these fun activities are really great ways to support their children in building up the muscles they need to become great writers. These activities are also exciting for children to engage in and won't be limited to sitting down with a pencil and paper, which despite the best of intentions can end up with a frustrated child! That's not to say this isn't a great idea, sometimes this will be exactly what you both want to do but as our day demonstrated, if you are thinking of some ideas to support your child's early writing, there are endless ways to do this.
During the day parents were shown that they are powerful role models and their children will likely copy what they are doing, so even when you are writing a shopping list or making notes at home and your child is copying and making different marks, they are learning to distinguish and support their gross and fine motor skills.
We hope you have plenty of fun rediscovering the joy of 'doodling' with your children!