Introduction to understanding and supporting young writers from birth to 8

Noella Mackenzie, Janet Scull

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter in textbook/reference bookpeer-review


Becoming literate is a child’s right and expectation, although the process is enacted to different degrees and in different ways in different parts of the world (UNICEF, 2012).For many young children, early drawing and writing experiences are symbolic of commencing their journey towards becoming literate. The first texts they create build their awareness of the ways marks, signs and symbols communicate messages to others.Children begin to understand how messages are represented and communicated in a literate world, across time, and space, and in a range forms, including visual images and print, alongside digital and multimodal texts. They see adults in their world communicating in these ways and want to join in, drawing on a range of semiotic codes and resources for text production to create meaning for themselves and to be shared by others.Even for adult writers, “working or living with others who write invites cognizance about other people’s writing processes and the conditions in which they write” (Brandt,2015, p. 15). Writing should also be relevant to children’s lives (Vygotsky, 1978, p. 118)and as such “must assume a niche in the symbolic repertoire of a particular sociocultural group, including those consisting of children” (Dyson, 2016, p. 5).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnderstanding and supporting young writers from birth to 8
EditorsNoella M. Mackenzie, Janet Scull
Place of PublicationAbingdon, Oxon
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781315561301
ISBN (Print)9781138674448
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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