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  • Writer's pictureErica Klein Grasp Reading

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Here is a 3.47 minute video demonstrating how to form letters. Writing the alphabet, with proper formation, daily with your child will help them not just to become more fluent writers but also more fluent readers!

I warn my students that I am going to drive them bananas - I erase their letters and make them start again when we are working in person. Online, it is a bit trickier to manage this, but we try.

Working on handwriting as a skill at home does not require significant amount of time (just write the alphabet once a day). It also doesn't require extensive knowledge from you - watch this video to understand the proper stroke order (yes it matters) and get some verbal prompts. The verbal prompts are not important to get word perfect, but helping them with the correct stroke formation is important. You can use letter names when practicing handwriting (which also reinforces knowing the alphabet).

We specifically use printing (not cursive) as "say as you write" is an integral part of our teaching and the students must segment crisply. This means saying ONLY the sound for the letter(s) they are writing as they are writing it. Then they stop saying that sound before starting the next letter(s). For example, they would say the sound /oooo/ while writing the <u> in "dune" or the <ou> in "soup" or the "oo" in "moon." The SOUND the letters represents is what we say as we write.

Cursive has MANY benefits and I wouldn't discourage students learning it. For our purposes though, we want to create a very clear and strong connection between what they write and the sound it represents. Cursive makes that a bit more blurry because they tend to stretch out and connect sounds with the connected text. Eventually, that's great, but initially we want to make the code as clear as possible.

If you are looking for more resources on how to teach printing and cursive, I highly recommend Peterson!

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