Yellow Room's Handwriting

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Hand Writing:

D'Nealian handwriting is a continuous-stroke method that allows children to write letters faster and easier than ball-and-stick methods.  Most lower-case manuscript letters have the same form as their cursive counterpart, which makes the transition to cursive quick and easy.  The emphasis of D'Nealian handwriting is on legibility.  This means the goal for children is to write something someone can read right away.

When I evaluate handwriting papers, there are four things that I look for.  They are:

1.  Are letters formed correctly?  Standards for letter form enable the letter to be distinguished clearly from other letters.  In the letter a, for example, the round part of the letter must be open, the letter must close at the top, and the ending stroke must align with the bottom of the letter.

2.  Do all letters slant the same way?  Children are free to choose a slant that is comfortable, however, all their letters should have the same slant.

3.  Are letters about the same size?  All the small letters should sit between the baseline and the middle line.  Tall letters should reach the top line.  Letters that fall should touch the descender line.

4.  Are letters and words spaced correctly?  Letters should not be crowded together.  Children should leave a finger space between words and a bit more between sentences.

 

Fine motor activities to help with handwriting include the following:

Cutting-cut on lines, cut newspapers

Puzzles with small pieces

Modeling clay or play dough-squeeze, roll, shape into letters or other objects

Small ball to squeeze

Mazes

Dot-to-Dot activities

Coloring

Tracing around patterns or cookie cutters

Making cookies-roll the dough, cut out cookies

Finger painting

Water colors

Tracing letters or shapes in damp sand

Lacing

Putting interlocking cubes or Legos together

Use tweezers to pick up small objects