Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Handwriting

I don't remember how old he was, but as soon as my son could start to form the letters in his name, we started having him write his name on things. When we would write out birthday cards, color a picture to send to the grandparents or were writing out thank you cards, we would have him write his name on them. Early on, it wasn't very legible and the letters weren't always in order. But with time, he mastered his name. Not only his first name, but his last name too. (we have a long last name, the pediatrician was impressed that he could spell and write both of his names when he went for his well visit that year - I think he was three)

As he got better at writing his letters, we started writing very brief notes on a white board for him to copy into cards and thank you cards. On pictures, he would write who the picture was to and from.

I never thought this was an unusual thing to do. He was so excited about learning his letters and writing them, that it only seemed natural to have him use his skills in practical ways. Writing out cards and letters was more fun than just writing a letter over and over (although, he liked that too) and a great way to practice and to show the family how well he could write. Needless to say, this practice led him to have better control over his pencil strokes and this led to him having nice handwriting.

When I accompanied my son's class on a field trip, the teacher's aide was quick to compliment my son's handwriting. She told me that it was very neat handwriting for a kindergartner and one of the best in the class. She asked if we worked with him on his writing. I explained to her what we had had him do and she thought that was a great way for kids to get practice at home. I plan to have our daughter do the same thing as she starts to learn her letters in the coming year, because it works for us.

For other tips and tricks, check out Works For Me Wednesday, over at We Are THAT Family.

2 comments:

christinnjon said...

Excellent idea! I, too, like the idea of channeling handwriting into something practical. And the grandparents love it!

JanMary said...

Great idea - every little helps :) (but short names help too!)