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Why Is Writing So Difficult For Some Children ?

A majority of  teachers and parents would have realised  that getting ink out of a pen can sometimes be just as traumatic as getting blood out of a stone. We exist  in a world that devours   communication in writing  . However  , for many learners  the acquisition  of elementary  skills in this area presents a massive problem . There are several obstacles that may confront the student  when  attempting the task of writing.

As a preliminary factor  , the society  where you are educated  may be the primary hurdle  to resolve  . Some languages are simpler to puzzle through  than others. In this respect  , English is an extremely involved system of written communication . In many instances  , words are not spelled the way they sound  and this makes it even more challenging for a young student to learn to write words  correctly . As an example, let’s size up the English sound unit ‘ough‘. There are at least five ways of saying this  sound unit despite the fact  its appearance remains unchanged . Yes, English is  an extremely   tortuous  language!

Secondly, writing itself is an exceptionally complex cognitive task. Ask any writer about the generation of a story  idea and you will get some understanding of this difficulty. Writing is made up of :

  • imagination (the combination of learned facts and the consideration of ‘what if’ possibilities);
  • collecting vocabulary from storage in long-term memory;
  • the capacity  to retain  ideas and language in working memory;
  • fine-motor control in the formation of letters;
  • the skill of decoding   one’s own printing  ;
  • the ability to recognise  errors; and
  • being able (and emotionally willing!) to make any necessary changes.

Finally , all this seems difficult enough  at the best of times. Yet some students have to overcome  extra  challenges  in the guise  of various learning disabilities. Disorders such as dyslexia and dysgraphia  can create incremental difficulties for these individuals  even when they are discovered   when a child is young .

It is not surprising that some of us are reluctantwhen it comes to putting the written word on the page . In the next post , we will describe some of the resources  you can implement to encourage  those reluctant writers.

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