Emergent Writing Milestones By the end of two years:

Children will...

•Scribble spontaneously. •Scribble and draw on the same page. •Use the terms “writing” and “drawing” interchangeably. •Choose different instruments and colors with which to write and draw.

By the end of three years:

Children will... •Hold a pencil in the correct position for writing.

•Make vertical, horizontal, and circular strokes with a pencil or crayon.

By the end of four years:

Children will...

•Copy simple shapes. •Draw a person with 2-4 body parts. •Draw circles and squares. •Begin to copy some capital letters.

Between the end of the third and the end of the fourth year:

Children will...

•Experiment with a growing variety of writing tools. •Use drawings to stand for writing (usually during dramatic play). •Understand the difference between writing and drawing. •Assign messages to their writing and drawings. •Understand that print carries a message. •Begin to understand the left to right directionality.

Between the end of the fourth year and the end of the fifth year:

Children will...

•Understand that writing is a way of communicating for a variety of purposes. •Represent their experiences and stories through drawings and dictation. •Copy or write familiar words, such as their own name.

***These milestones are based upon the American Academy of Pediatrics Developmental Milestones.