Monday, May 30, 2011


In an earlier post I said that we separate reading and writing. This is because writing is a fine motor skills and has little to do with comprehension. One of the reasons homeschooling was so important to me was the push for writing to be the main form of instruction in schools today (public and private). My eldest did K at a private school (they grade skipped him in to K one year early). I almost fell over when I realized they were expected to write almost 100% of all of their reading and math work. His teacher would tell me for math "I know he knows this, he can do it in his head. However, since he can't write it down I can't give him credit for knowing it." She was sweet, but it confirmed what we already knew - homeschooling was going to be our only option. We have put handwriting back in its place and it has become something neat to learn as opposed to holding the kids back from other intellectual pursuits.

1. Cursive first. While my eldest didn't get the pleasure of starting with cursive, he is able to learn it as new along with his brother and sister. The know what print looks like and they will learn to write print as well. However, they use computers quite a bit, so they are getting plenty of print exposure. Please see my blog post: Cursive First, for more information on why we start with cursive.
2. Montessori sandpaper letters. I LOVE Montessori Outlet - they have the best prices and highest quality Montessori supplies I have found. We have the upper and lower case cursive sandpaper letters. I love this for giving the kids a feel for how the letters are formed.
3. Cursive letter strips - these are tapped to their desks so they can always see the correct formation of letters if they get stuck.
4. Games for Writing: Playful Ways to Help Your Child Learn to Write by Peggy Kaye. This book has some really creative games for practicing handwriting!
5. Modified Basic Skills: Correcting Reversals by Penny Groves. At times the kids need to print and this book has been great with helping my dyslexic eldest who sometimes reverses print as well as instruction for teaching a left handed child to write as one of my twins is left handed.
6. Play dough letters. We will use play dough to form various letters in cursive as well as print. Its really just kind of fun to do!
7. Supplying paper, pencils, pens, and crayons for them to practice writing as they please.
8. I have several cursive practice writing pads, including some HUGE pads for them to practice with. However, I am choosing to wait on those until we finish our phonics instruction.

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