i‑Learner Education Centre

Steps to Success » Encouraging Children

How personal journaling enhances students’ ability to express their thoughts and ideas more naturally.

Journaling has always been a space where I can express my feelings and thoughts openly without judgement. It is a place where I feel heard and as an educator I believe it to be beneficial, especially to younger students, to start journaling to find their voice in English. I started journaling when I was in Grade 2 as a result of my difficulty socialising with my peers at school. Since then, I have been journaling whenever and wherever. It used to be as simple as what I did throughout the day and now, I journal about everything. In my journal, I write about my quests and encounters with different people I meet at social events, the hectic nature of living in Hong Kong, and simply the questions that I haven’t found the answers to yet. Journaling has allowed me to be in tune with my voice. 

Many students struggle to articulate their thoughts and their opinions on a variety of topics as schools often spoon-feed students the information that they need to pass their exams. However, learning to think for yourself and using one’s own experiences to examine one’s inner and outer world can do so much for an individual’s learning growth. If a student finds their voice and is comfortable with it, their articulation in both written and verbal communication will become more authentic. 

Journaling can be one of the practices that allows a person to engage within themselves as an individual. It is more than just writing about thoughts and feelings. It is about how you choose to express yourself, about how you perceive yourself in the world, and in what manner you convey that. You learn how your choice of words contributes to creating the appropriate tone. You also feel more free when you gradually become more comfortable with your voice. The rhetorical devices you mundanely learned at schools suddenly become more natural to use in both writing and conversation. 

I encourage students to start journaling. Not only will this bring more fruitful experiences in academic settings, but it is also beneficial to ensure children show up as their authentic selves in adulthood.