When I was in elementary school, I was obsessed with handwriting. I would skip recess to make the letters of each word in my story or report look just right—readable and attractive. I always got a lot of comments on my handwriting, which, of course, I liked.
Writing is an important part of learning to read. Readable handwriting is also important. And no matter your child’s age, you can always find ways to help him improve her handwriting.
Rusty and Rosy Reading™ teaches children how to form letters as they learn about them. For example, they learn the strokes for creating an uppercase T: Straight line down and straight line across the top. Learning the strokes and how to properly hold a pen or pencil make writing letters and numbers easier.
Fine-tuning handwriting skills is not just about creating attractive letters, though. It is also about building upon fine motor skills. It’s about brain development.
This week is actually National Handwriting Week. And to celebrate, you can include these simple ideas in teaching your child about letters and how to write them:
Write in the sand. If you don’t have a sand pit—and even if you do have one outside, it might be a little cold to use it—just get a bottle of sand from a craft store. Pour the sand into a pie tin or small cake pan. Have your child make letters with the correct strokes in the sand, using his finger. (You can also use flour.)
Paint. Get out the watercolors and have your child paint the letters on paper. He can also add a little decoration around the letters for a great masterpiece of art.
Write with goo. What child doesn’t like to squish some sort of soft gooey concoction between their fingers? You can use pudding, flour/water mix with food coloring, paste, etc. Put wax paper on the table for easy clean up. Then put the gooey substance all over the paper. Your child is ready for letter-writing fun. (Same idea as the sand. Have your child use his finger to write letters in/with the goo.)
If your child is older, he can practice his handwriting through writing stories.
Here are some lined papers your child may recognize from school to help him write his letters or stories. Download and print as many as you would like to give your child some writing practice.
Feature photo courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net.