View Full Version : Handwriting question for kindergartener

10-09-2009, 04:22 PM
My oldest dd is in kindergarten this year. She has been writing on her own for about a year, but we didn't really work on letter formations. We still aren't being strict about it, but I've been having her work on writing her name every day. I have one line with her name with arrows which she traces, then her name with just dots showing where to start which she also traces, and then one line for her to try to write it independently.

She is really struggling with remembering where to start with her pencil - she wants to start in between the top and middle line for her lower case, for example. And she also wants to go clockwise instead of counterclockwise for her a's. There are three a's in her first name, and she has already traced six a's by the time she tries to write them independently, but she has a really terrible time trying to go counterclockwise. I just calmly stop her and have her re-do it, but she gets kind of upset about it.

Is this something I should just let go? Will she grow out of it? Do I need to be consistent about it...?

I don't want to make her hate writing, as its something she currently really enjoys. And we are keeping our lessons very short - her only copywork at all is her name and then one number sheet, and we don't necessarily do it every day.

Laura F
10-09-2009, 04:45 PM
She sounds pretty normal to me. For K handwriting, I use A Reason for Handwriting, which always includes green start dots to show students where to start their letters. (The K book is very low-key, and I'm using it with my 4 y.o. this year because she requested it.) If you use Start Write software, you can choose to print letters with start dots or even directional arrows.

Shannon P
10-09-2009, 05:04 PM
Is she left handed? It's normal for lefties to make circles clockwise, as that is the identical mirror image movements of a rightie. It's easier to initiate the motion by pushing the pencil rather than pulling it.

I had to constantly remind my lefty to go counterclockwise. I stuck with it because it sets a good habit for cursive which uses counterclockwise circles that are harder to avoid. I don't care so much if he makes clockwise circles when he is printing now; I can't really stop it.

One exercise I did with my lefty was to have him fill a line with counterclockwise swirls or loops.

Nancy Ann
10-09-2009, 05:08 PM
Learning to write correctly is a gradual process. My son is a second grader and he will still write some letters incorrectly but not nearly like last year for first grade. I have seen a huge improvement. The only thing that I did was when we were having a handwriting lesson I would make sure he was writing everything correctly and I would watch him and correct mistakes. He liked to do alot of writing letters and doodling on his own and during that time I very rarely corrected him.

I used Start Write to make copywork worksheets for him and it has lots of options. You can have the dotted letters to trace or you can have a red dot that is the starting place. It's a great versatile program.

She will eventually get it....it just will take practice. I think try to do what you can before she get's upset, even if it's just one letter a day. Your better off doing a little tiny bit everyday like one letter than her name every few days if it ends up making her frustrated.

I also used a white board with colorful dry erase markers and let him draw his letters. This way I could make sure he was doing the correct formation but it was a change of pace and a bit more fun than on paper.

10-09-2009, 05:12 PM
This is where Handwriting Without Tears was fantastic for me -- "where do you start your letters?" "at the top!" (sung to "if you're happy and you know it")

And for writing your lowercase letters the right way (counterclockwise) they have the "Magic C" where the magic C can become lots of different letters, but you always start with a "C." :thumb:

10-09-2009, 05:38 PM
Just remember things take time. Especially re-learning to do something a different way.

I second Handwriting Without Tears. It's a great program for things like this.

10-09-2009, 05:46 PM
I second Handwriting Without Tears. It's a great program for things like this.

Ditto! :yes: