How Children Can Improve Their Vocabulary for Creative Writing

Vocabulary is one of the most important skills for children to develop, especially if they are preparing for the 7+, 8+, 10+ , 11+ or 13+ exams that test their verbal reasoning and creative writing abilities. Verbal reasoning is the ability to understand and manipulate words and concepts, while creative writing is the ability to express ideas and emotions through words. Both skills require a rich and varied vocabulary that can help children communicate effectively, avoid confusion, and achieve clarity.

But how can children improve their vocabulary skills? Here are some tips and strategies that parents can use to help their children expand their word knowledge and use it appropriately.

1. Learn the roots of words

To build a strong foundation for their vocabulary, children should understand the roots of words, which are the basic parts that give words their meaning. For example, the root “bio” means life, so words like biology, biography, and biosphere are related to life. Learning the roots of words can help children guess the meaning of unfamiliar words based on their parts.


2. Focus on practical terms and words

Some industries have different definitions for words or use entirely new words that are specific to their field. For example, a lawyer may use terms like plaintiff, defendant, or litigation that are not common in everyday speech. Children should focus on learning practical terms and words that are relevant to their interests, hobbies, or future goals. This can help them improve their vocabulary for specific purposes and contexts.


3. Create word associations

Word associations are connections between words that share some similarity in meaning or sound. For example, big is associated with large, huge, or gigantic; while cat is associated with dog, pet, or meow. Creating word associations can help children remember new words more easily by linking them to familiar ones. Children can create groups of words based on topics (e.g., animals), parts of speech (e.g., nouns), synonyms (e.g., happy), antonyms (e.g., sad), or prefixes/suffixes (e.g., un-). Creating groups of words can help children learn new words faster by seeing patterns and relationships among them.

Children can use flashcards, mind maps, or lists to create word associations.


4. Complete regular vocabulary tests

Vocabulary tests are a great way to measure children’s progress and identify areas of improvement. Vocabulary tests can include multiple-choice questions, fill-in-the-blanks sentences, matching exercises, or crossword puzzles.

Children should complete regular vocabulary tests based on their reading materials, curriculum,
or exam requirements. They should also review their mistakes  and learn from them.


5. Take a writing class

A writing class can help children improve both their vocabulary and writing skills by exposing them to different styles, genres, and techniques of writing. A writing class can also provide feedback, guidance, and encouragement from a teacher or peers. We hold creative writing and verbal reasoning courses throughout the year in both our face to face venue in London and online.


6. Read widely and regularly

Reading is one of the best ways to improve vocabulary skills because it exposes children to new words in context. Reading also helps children learn how to use those words correctly in sentences
and paragraphs. Children should read widely and regularly from different sources such as books,
magazines, newspapers, websites, or blogs. They should also read from different genres such as fiction, non-fiction, poetry, or drama. You can find a list of our recommended reading lists here.


7. Play word games

Word games are fun activities that challenge children’s verbal reasoning and creative writing. Boggle, Scrabble, word search, crosswords and Banagram are some of the many games you can play with your child to make learning new words fun!


Improving a child’s vocabulary for their upcoming exams requires time and effort. If you need any further advice please feel free to contact us on 0203 488 1278 or