Sunday, February 9, 2014

A Structured Way to Teach List Writing

Hi everyone, I’m Basia from United Teaching. I have been homeschooling my children for the past 10 years. For me, one of the most challenging subjects to teach is writing; especially when children are first starting out.

We all know young children are full of ideas and thoughts.  The challenging part is teaching them to express these thoughts and ideas through writing.

Writing for young children is a complex activity that requires a combination of skills that include the formation of an idea, fine motor skills for holding writing instruments, letter formation, spelling, and grammar.

There are many methods for introducing the art of writing to children such as sentence starters, drawing pictures to tell a story, and labeling pictures. Today, I am going to describe a method I use with my children that combines picture drawing and list writing.

One of the first steps in writing lists is to decide on a topic. Children need to be able to stay on topic to write a list. If the topic is fruit, children will need to list different fruits. To help them understand this aspect, I begin by having my children do category sorting activities.

Once they have completed a couple of the category sorting activities, they create their own topic and draw pictures related to that category.

The next step is all about modeling how a list is constructed. We do this by drawing the pictures for a category in a list format. This is the part where the format of a list is introduced to children.

Finally, children are shown how to write words beside each picture to construct the list. Some children might be ready to write lists without having to draw pictures for each item.

This approach can be suited to children with varying writing abilities. The activity begins with children drawing and progresses to having them write lists about self selected topics. Initially, the focus is on the content and not on the form.

To try out this activity, stop by my TpT store to download the graphic organizers for the writing lesson for free!


  1. Your tips work like a breeze! From what I've read, younger kids, especially staters, are more stimulated by graphical stimuli like pictures, so this guide fits perfectly! Thank you for sharing this to your readers.

    Jan @

  2. Glade to read this blog, i also want to share my some point of view importance of self study for growing child.