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Handwriting

Handwriting CurriculumHandwriting Resources

We tend to think that if instruction isn't rigorous and difficult, it's not really instruction; or, we go to the other extreme and assume that everything in the world needs to be easy and fun, and that anything which doesn't fall into both categories should be avoided like an active volcano. As usual, the truth is somewhere in the middle, a fact easily demonstrated by the "right" approach to teaching handwriting.

Kids learn best when instruction is organic. That doesn't mean you have to be a vegan, just that you don't need to turn every skill (no matter how "academic") into a formal school subject. Penmanship involves a lot of skills just as easily acquired through everyday activities, and while putting them together to form the specific ability known as good handwriting requires concentrated effort, giving your kids the building blocks can be far less structured and a lot more fun for everyone involved.

For instance, holding a pencil or pen correctly requires specific motor skills that aren't necessarily intuitive (a lot of kids start out trying to hold their pencil like the hilt of a sword). However, picking up small objects is intuitive, and can be a great way to hone your child's ability to operate his or her hand properly when learning to write. Some educators even encourage parents to start this process with babies as young as nine months.

Learning good penmanship is more than just learning the right motions. Children also need to absorb the names, character, and shapes of each letter of the alphabet, a far more intellectual activity than learning how to hold a writing implement. But even here, they can be taught these things while playing with blocks or letter magnets, while coloring or drawing, and even by making letters out of playdough. (Studies indicate that children who draw a lot end up with better handwriting than those who don't "practice" in this way.)

But why teach handwriting? many will wonder. My child will just grow up typing, anyway; she'll have no need for penmanship skills. Unless the world becomes entirely automated and paper is outlawed by all the governments of the world, that's simply not true. Adults write all day—memos at work, shopping lists and phone numbers at home, even a husband's short love notes to his tired and stressed-out wife. If kids never learn to write by hand, and to write legibly by hand, how will they be able to communicate with others (or even themselves) later on?

Current research shows that simple handwriting instruction, specifically cursive instruction, actually aids academic study and advancement. Because, as much as some would like everything to be simply practical and expedient, academic study and success are important elements in the development of children. To some extent, if we want our kids to be good readers and mathemeticians, we need to make them good handwriters.

Handwriting development doesn't just help a child's academic progress, however. It helps them become detail-oriented, to understand the need for clarity, and gives them something to practice which can be tangibly measured in terms of progress. Yes, good penmanship takes effort and is often frustrating, but the rewards it yields are worth the initial hand cramps and scribbled letters.

In the end there isn't really a "right" way to teach handwriting, or to introduce any of the little helps that reinforce the appropriate skills and get kids interested in penmanship through different avenues. There is a right attitude, though, one which sees a child's development as a holistic process of which handwriting skills are an integral part, and which takes every available opportunity to teach those skills.

Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur.Read more of his reviews here.

 

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202 Items found Print
ABC Writing Tablet - Cursive
2nd edition from A Beka Books
for Kindergarten Age 4
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
ABC Writing Tablet - Manuscript
from A Beka Books
for Kindergarten Age 4
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
Alphabet Wall Charts (Cursive)
from Memoria Press
for Preschool-Kindergarten
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Alphabet Wall Charts (Manuscript)
by Memoria Press
from Memoria Press
for Preschool-Kindergarten
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Beginnings K5 Write Now! Handwriting
from Bob Jones University Press
for Kindergarten
in BJU Handwriting (Location: B13-05A)
$8.89
Calligraphy
Usborne Guides
by Caroline Young
from Usborne
for 6th-10th grade
in Calligraphy (Location: ART-03A)
$5.00 (1 in stock)
Calligraphy for Kids
by Eleanor Winters
from Sterling Publishing Co.
for 3rd-7th grade
in Calligraphy (Location: ART-03A)
$6.00 (1 in stock)
Can-Do Print
by Lesslie Newbigin
from Handwriting Without Tears
for 5th grade
in Handwriting Without Tears (Location: B13-04E)
Character Italic - Advanced Cursive
by Martine Cox, Wendy Shaw
from Italic Builders
for 1st-6th grade
in Getty-Dubay™ Italic Handwriting (Location: B13-04C)
Character Italic - Basic Print
by Martine Cox, Wendy Shaw
from Italic Builders
for 1st-6th grade
in Getty-Dubay™ Italic Handwriting (Location: B13-04C)
Character Italic - Beginning Cursive
by Martine Cox, Wendy Shaw
from Italic Builders
for 1st-6th grade
in Getty-Dubay™ Italic Handwriting (Location: B13-04C)
CL Handwriting Practice Pads: 2nd-4th
from Christian Liberty Press
for 2nd-4th grade
in CLP Handwriting (Location: B13-05D)
$2.25
CL Handwriting Practice Pads: K-1st
from Christian Liberty Press
for Kindergarten-1st grade
in CLP Handwriting (Location: B13-05D)
$2.25
Classical Reading and Writing Covering Modern History 1800s-1985
by Kimberly D. Garcia
for 4th-8th grade
in Clearance: Language Arts (Location: BLG-06B)
$5.00 (1 in stock)
Classically Cursive Book 1
by B. J. Jordan
from Veritas Press
for Kindergarten-1st grade
in Veritas Press Classically Cursive (Location: B13-05A)
$12.00
Classically Cursive Book 2
by B. J. Jordan
from Veritas Press
for 1st-2nd grade
in Veritas Press Classically Cursive (Location: B13-05A)
$12.00
Classically Cursive Book 3
by B. J. Jordan
from Veritas Press
for 2nd-3rd grade
in Veritas Press Classically Cursive (Location: B13-05A)
$12.00 $7.00 (2 in stock)
Classically Cursive Book 4
by Kathy Mahaffy & B. J. Jordan
from Veritas Press
for 3rd-4th grade
in Veritas Press Classically Cursive (Location: B13-05A)
$12.00
Composition and Sketchbook I
from Memoria Press
for 1st-3rd grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$8.50
Composition and Sketchbook II
from Memoria Press
for 1st-3rd grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$8.50
Composition and Sketchbook III
from Memoria Press
for 1st-3rd grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$8.50
Copybook Cursive I: Scripture & Poems
by Leigh Lowe
Fir from Memoria Press
for 1st-4th grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Copybook Cursive II
by Brenda Janke
1st edition from Memoria Press
for 1st-4th grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Copybook I
by Leigh & Cheryl Lowe
from Memoria Press
for Kindergarten-1st grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Copybook II
by Leigh & Cheryl Lowe
from Memoria Press
for 1st-2nd grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Copybook III
by Leigh & Cheryl Lowe
from Memoria Press
for 2nd-3rd grade
in Memoria Press Penmanship & Copybooks (Location: B13-04D)
$14.95
Creative Writing
from A Beka Books
for 6th grade
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
Cursive First
by Elizabeth FitzGerald
2nd edition from LITHBTH Educational Services
for Kindergarten-4th grade
in Spell to Write and Read (Location: B09-02A)
$20.00
Cursive Formation Flashcards
from A Beka Books
for Preschool-Kindergarten
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
$10.00 (1 in stock)
Cursive Formation Flashcards
from A Beka Books
for Kindergarten-2nd grade
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
Cursive Formation Flashcards (1-2)
from A Beka Books
for 1st-2nd grade
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
$10.00 (2 in stock)
Cursive Practice Sheets
from Memoria Press
in Handwriting Resources (Location: B13-04A)
$14.95
Cursive Success
by Jan Olsen
from Handwriting Without Tears
for 3rd-5th grade
in Handwriting Without Tears (Location: B13-04E)
Cursive Writing Skillbook
from A Beka Books
for 3rd grade
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
Cursive Writing Tablet
from A Beka Books
for 1st grade
in A Beka Penmanship/Creative Writing (Location: B13-04A)
Daily Handwriting Practice: Contemporary Cursive
from Evan-Moor Educational Publishers
for 1st-12th grade
in Evan-Moor Daily Handwriting Practice (Location: B13-04A)
$20.99
Daily Handwriting Practice: Modern Manuscript
by Jill Norris
from Evan-Moor Educational Publishers
for 1st-3rd grade
in Evan-Moor Daily Handwriting Practice (Location: B13-04A)
$20.99
Daily Handwriting Practice: Traditional Cursive
by Jill Norris
from Evan-Moor Educational Publishers
for 2nd-4th grade
in Evan-Moor Daily Handwriting Practice (Location: B13-04A)
$20.99
Daily Handwriting Practice: Traditional Manuscript
by Jill Norris
from Evan-Moor Educational Publishers
for 1st-3rd grade
in Evan-Moor Daily Handwriting Practice (Location: B13-04A)
$20.99
Draw Write Now - Boxed Set (Books 1-8)
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for Kindergarten-5th grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$85.00
Draw Write Now - Workbook
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for Kindergarten-5th grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$4.99
Draw Write Now Book 1
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from Barker Creek
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$9.00 (2 in stock)
Draw Write Now Book 1
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50
Draw Write Now Book 2
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from Barker Creek
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50 $9.00 (1 in stock)
Draw Write Now Book 2
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50
Draw Write Now Book 3
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from Barker Creek
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$9.00 (2 in stock)
Draw Write Now Book 3
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for Kindergarten-3rd grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50
Draw Write Now Book 4
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from Barker Creek
for 1st-5th grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50
Draw Write Now Book 4
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from In the Think of Things
for 1st-5th grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$12.50
Draw Write Now Book 5
by Marie Hablitzel & Kim Stitzer
from Barker Creek
for 1st-5th grade
in Draw Write Now (Location: ART-01E)
$9.00 (1 in stock)
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