Diaries and journals have been kept by people for centuries. Some have become very famous, such as The Diary of Anne Frank. Others have provided insight into the history of people and places. Although your child probably will not create a diary that everyone wants to read, they will derive pleasure from daily recording the events in their lives. No matter how old your child is, they can derive many benefits from keeping a diary.
- Keeping a Diary Creates a Lasting Record of Events
When your child keeps a diary, they capture activities they participated in and how they felt at the time. Looking back at what they accomplished, and their feelings can serve as a touchpoint for future events. Additionally, it helps them remember childhood events, the memory of which may slip away as the years pass. Your child will be able to recapture childhood memories and examine them more deeply as they get older.
- Keeping a Diary Stimulates the Mind
According to a 2015 report by the National Literacy Trust, children who write in diary at least once a month are more likely to write above the expected level for their age than those who do not write in a diary. The act of writing engages the brain. In order to write, your child must think. Writing in a diary daily encourages reflection and engagement. As you child matures and their writing becomes more detailed, they will learn to process and communicate complex ideas effectively. Daily journal or diary writing also helps your child learn to break down complex experiences into relevant, useful bits of information; thus, enhancing organizational skills.
- Keeping a Diary Makes for a Healthy Mind
Writing in a diary helps reduce stress. Recording feelings in a diary gives your child a safe, cathartic way to release their emotions. Your child can record and relive events they have experienced without the fear of any negative consequences for doing so. Additionally, keeping a diary and recording life events can increase a child’s self-esteem.
Frequently, teens and tweens experience emotional problems and an older child with a diary is less likely to feel lonely and isolated. They are able to have written “conversations” with themselves, which can help them sort out their feelings and reflect on their lives.
Tips on How You Can Help Your Child Successfully Keep a Diary:
- A very young child can draw pictures instead of writing. They can caption their pictures if they wish to do so or you can help them with this task.
- When your child is a bit older, encourage them to list the activities of the day. They will probably write a bit more if they do not feel they have to write long sentences.
- Once your child gets into the practice of writing in a diary, suggest they write their thoughts. You may need to help them sort their feelings and reactions.
- Suggest your older child use sections or headings in their diary. This organization trick helps your child organize their thoughts.
To make your child’s diary writing a positive experience, allot a fixed time each day or week to write in the journal. Also, make sure your child notes the date and time on each page or for each entry.
A diary is a great way for your child to express their emotions and share all the activities they participate in and the ideas they have buzzing in their heads. Keeping a diary helps mould your child’s personality, so start when your child is young encouraging them to keep a diary.