What Fun Writing Games Motivate and Inspire Students?

Posted by Erica Warren on

Writing can be a wonderful and creative activity for students, however, if learners hate the process it can be difficult to teach them this needed skill.  So what can be done to motivate struggling writers?

kids playing fun writing game

Why Do Kids Hate Writing?

There are a number of reasons a student may hate to write.

  • Hand writing is difficult, labored and even painful.  Many of these learners are much more intelligent than their handwriting would indicate, so many will do whatever they can to avoid writing.
  • Multitasking with the many skills needed to write is overwhelming and taxing.  Students can not truly multitask until all the skills needed to write are learned to automaticity.  Therefore, it's often helpful to strengthen any weak skills in handing writing, key boarding, grammar, spelling, sentence formation, as well as the organization and visualization of ideas. 
  • Associating writing with poor grades or discouraging comments can create a sense of learned helplessness.
Teaching Writing Skills

    Writing Games Can Help Discouraged Learners:

    Over the past 20+ years as a learning specialist, I have taught some challenging learners who were virtually shut down to the writing process.  It was my job to find the key, and time and time again, the answer was in creating games that make the process fun.  EF games

    Here are three such games:

    • 5 Ws Detectives: This simple sentence game helps players solve silly cases by defining who did it, what they did, when it was done, and why. Players work against the clock to solve clues, fill in the data, and write a sentence to summarize their findings. Players can try to improve their own score and compete against themselves, or they can play against others. This game develops language processing, sequencing, processing speed, word retrieval and more.

    5ws detective

    • Show Don't Tell Descriptive Writing Game Digital Download: This game teaches players how to become masters of descriptive writing.  They will quickly learn how to “show” instead of "tell" in their choice of words with the use of descriptive adjectives, verbs, adverbs, similes, metaphors and personification. Instead of telling a story, players rapidly learn how to vividly portray a scene or scenario.

    show don't tell

    • Show Don't Tell 2 Descriptive Suspense Writing Game Digital Download: This is another descriptive writing game that helps players learn how to improve their suspense writing with the use of leading words, a series of three sensory hints to build tension, as well as descriptive verbs, adjectives, adverbs, similes, metaphors, personification, alliterations, and onomatopoeias. Instead of telling a story, players quickly learn how to vividly describe a scene or scenario, expand their understanding and use of literary elements and grab the reader’s attention. 

    show don't tell 2

    • Other Writing Resources: Sometimes multisensory activities are what my students need.  Here are a number of products that met their needs.  CLICK HERE to learn more.
    Executive Functioning Coaching

      Would you like to take it further and learn many more tools for teaching writing?

      I'm happy to share my approach with you! Teaching Writing Skills - A Structured and Multisensory Approach is a comprehensive course for teachers, parents, and tutors that shares my own dynamic methods for students of all ages writing skills. The course offers video instruction and demonstrations as well as free downloadable games, materials, and handouts for your students. In addition, I implement and integrate a number of amazing technology tools that keep the process highly structured and organized.  You, too, can teach your students to be highly competent and confident writers.

      Clearly, bringing games and a structured approach into the learning process can ignite a love for learning and can inspire joyful writing for a lifetime.

      Cheers, Erica

      Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator, and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning. She is also the director of Learning to Learn and Learning Specialist Courses.

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