Learning to write well is an essential skill, but it doesn't have to be a difficult or drawn out process. The PreScripts books from Classical Conversations will make able cursive writers of your kids without causing anyone to tear their hair out or take fire to the school books. In fact, kids will likely enjoy practicing their penmanship throughout this series (it is a practice course, not an introduction), which also prompts them to color, draw, and learn details about history.
How Do These Work?
There are five consumable PreScripts books, to be used as needed; the first, Cursive Letters and Coloring: Medieval to Modern World History, is for young students just beginning to learn to write in cursive. This is NOT a history course—the subtitle refers to the pictures included for coloring, which depict important historic figures, objects, and events. Subsequent themes include Scripture, Math Terms, Medieval and modern world history, and American documents.
The cursive style taught in these books is basically the New American Cursive style employed by Memoria Press. It's a graceful and fairly easy script to master, rooted more in simplicity than in grandiose lettering. In the first book, students write letters, short words, and color pictures; in the second, they write words and sentences, and draw pictures; in the third, they write whole sentences and complete mini art history lessons; and in the fourth, they copy passages from American historical documents and practice writing illuminated letters.
Each book is spiralbound for easy lay-flat use, and requires no outside instruction. The art-based assignments are geared toward fostering precision and fine motor skills, though they also add a level of interest that many penmanship courses lack. There is no print instruction here, so if you want to start with manuscript you'll need to look elsewhere, though there is a growing group of parents and instructors who argue for the value of starting with cursive rather than print.
Our Honest Opinion:
Many penmanship courses are either too involved to make them practical for busy or large families, or they're so boring that kids don't want to complete assignments and therefore race through without taking the time to master good handwriting. This brief course is both simple and fun, and these are reasons enough to recommend the books to a large cross-section of Exodus Books customers. Designed to be used in conjunction with the Classical Conversations curriculum, PreScripts can also be used by themselves.
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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