I can’t count the number of times parents ask for help teaching their student to write “because they are more math oriented.”
So – make it more like math, I always tell them. Appeal to the math concepts that these students absorb easily.
Every child has a specific learning style and subjects that they like more than others. The key to teaching any subject is to find what resonates with each student and adjust your presentation. Once the student acquires the skills and concepts—and once she begins to find success and build confidence—the rest will come more naturally.
So…find the math in writing…
Teach the art of diagramming sentences. Sentence diagramming is geometric. Students learn to compartmentalize words into their function in a sentence. Every word has a job. Students learn how words fit together to form grammatically correct sentences and they learn how to avoid incomplete and run on sentences. Suddenly introductory elements jump out of sentences and punctuation becomes easier to place.
Use graphic organizers to teach paragraph structure and focus. These help students visualize a large piece of writing and provide a framework to begin the arduous process of paper writing.
Create formulas to explain concepts of writing. Hook + Thesis + Blueprint = Introduction Paragraph (Writing the 5 Paragraph Paper). Formulas provide a familiar concept that allows students to plug in parts of a whole to achieve a final outcome. So don’t write off “math kids”. Instead help them to be successful “writing kids” too!
By appealing to the “math” side of the brain, you will have your student writing with ease and ambition!