Why Proofreading (Self-Editing) Is So Important


Most young writers don’t understand that proofreading is a critical part of the writing process. Everyone makes mistakes. Especially children because they’re new to the writing process. They have to learn to look for mistakes and remove them so that their writing instructors can see where the students really need help. If a student’s paper is filled with errors that are simply mistakes that the students can fix themselves, instructors can’t adapt their teaching to focus on areas where students really need help.

It’s a very simple reason to teach children to edit or proofread their assignments before turning them in, but it really is crucial to make sure that the feedback from instructor to student is focused on the right content. When that feedback is filled with information that students have already mastered, a lot of time is wasted.

A Proofreading and Editing Checklist

In finishing up the Writing from Rhetoric Book 1 textbook, I decided to include a checklist for both students and instructors. It’s not a rubric for grading, but a checklist that helps parents and students correct writing mistakes.


The checklist below can be used by instructors to edit their students papers or by students to proofread and edit their own papers. If you want your students to use the checklist, I suggest that you initially use it with your students and edit together so that they have opportunity to become accustomed to the process first.



Click here to download the free proofreading checklist!