Previously, the format of keeping personal diaries was very popular, many parents remember them with great warmth. It seems that today’s children keep diaries less and less: they prefer social networks and blogs to notes in notebooks and notebooks. It turns out that keeping a personal diary — even if online — is a very useful practice for a child. In this article, you will find out why now is the time to give the kids this great idea.
Why modern children diaries
It would seem that today’s children do not need diaries at all: any thought can be written down in notes on the phone or left on a personal blog. But it’s not that simple! Some guys, following the tradition of their parents or older comrades, still keep personal notes on paper and do it with great interest. So why?
In many ways, keeping a personal handwritten diary is a method of relaxation and solitude. Even with a very secretive blog, that kind of secrecy and openness can’t be achieved. And children of senior school age understand one important thing: the Internet remembers everything. Therefore, the most ordinary notebook with innermost thoughts becomes for them an assistant, a psychologist, and a friend. In addition, it is always at hand, so the ability to record something will not be affected by either the lack of charge on the phone or the Internet being turned off.
The benefits of keeping a diary for a child
It is unlikely that children think about the benefits of keeping a diary. They do it more for pleasure and for personal purposes, and not for the sake of some abstract advantages. It is difficult for adults to deny a certain therapeutic effect of this activity.
Keeping a diary helps children:
- strengthen writing, speaking and communication skills;
- improve reading and comprehension skills;
- stimulate imagination, fantasy, creativity (including through design);
- improve memory, attention, concentration skills;
- learn to formulate your thoughts briefly, but succinctly;
- develop spelling and punctuation vigilance;
- relieve emotional tension and stress through the «splash» of negative thoughts;
- “discuss” with the diary the positive moments that have occurred, mentally living them again;
- capture important memories, so that later you can return to them again;
- conduct introspection through rereading thoughts and further reflection;
- develop the skills of discussion, dispute, finding the right arguments and defending one’s point of view;
- develop critical thinking and thereby independently solve diverse problems.
If a child keeps a personal diary, this does not mean at all that he is an unsociable renegade who cannot communicate and is afraid of everything. The fact is that in childhood and adolescence it is really difficult to open up even to close people, so the diary is a kind of outlet, personifying unity with oneself. The child is alone with his thoughts, he argues, thinks and speaks out, without accumulating negativity in himself. Very cool!
How to make journaling comfortable
Of course, it is not necessary to forbid a child to keep a diary. Interestingly, many parents are categorically against this format of pastime, because they believe that because of the diary, the child will stop coming to moms and dads with their problems. But this is a big mistake! A personal diary is not at all a symbol of children’s distrust of the world (and parents in particular). On the contrary, it is a sign of growing up of a child who is increasingly in need of personal space and freedom of expression.
The task of moms and dads is to make keeping a personal diary comfortable for the child. And here’s what you can do.
one. Never read a child’s personal diary. Reading a child’s diary is like violating his personal boundaries. If you really want to, you can ask the child in his presence to allow you to read any record that he allows himself. Some guys don’t mind at all that moms or dads read what they write. Most often, very creative children with a writer’s streak, who need “spectators” like air, do this. And yet, think a hundred times before reading a children’s diary without asking: are you ready to find out what your child is thinking about? How will you deal with information that you may not like? Are you ready to be silent if you find out what you should not know? How to deal with an awakened conscience? The best solution is to simply show respect to the child and not read what is not intended for you.
2. Choose together a convenient paper carrier. The format of keeping a personal diary is an individual thing. Some children can write their thoughts in ordinary notebooks. Others do not feel any mystery and security in them. If you want to encourage your child to keep a diary or just show him that you understand and support him, choose together the most convenient paper medium for recording. It can be a spring notebook with a beautiful cover, a stylish children’s diary or a special notebook that has a key and lock to keep its handwritten secrets.
3. Tell about yourself. And about the great people who kept records during their lifetime and now we learn the story from a variety of sources. Some adults kept diaries as children and then destroyed them. Ask your child — would he like to read all this in 20 years? And 50? The methods and values of keeping a diary can also be discussed. How does journaling help your child? And what does he lack?
four. Show an example. Keeping a personal diary regularly will also benefit parents! And the child, seeing mom and dad for such an occupation, will take on it with great pleasure. It is quite possible to talk with children about keeping diaries and explain why it is so useful and interesting. There is nothing wrong here — give the child complete freedom of «diary» self-expression: where, how, what to write about, with or without a date, with or without a heading — let him decide for himself!
When a child enters the age period of self-knowledge and self-development, he can begin to keep a personal diary. This is a kind of therapeutic tool that allows both children and adults to understand themselves, their feelings and relationships.