4 Handwriting ProgramHandwriting without tears is a structured handwriting program.The multisensory lessons teach to all learning styles- tactile, auditory, visual, and movement.It is a simple developmentally based curriculum for writing readiness, printing and cursive.
5 Multisensory Multisensory handwriting program Tactile-using wood pieces or chalkboardsAuditory-songs and verbal directionsVisual-boundaries in which to fit the lettersMovement-warm ups, wood pieces
6 BenefitsPrevent problems with letter formation, reversals, legibility, spacing.Can be enjoyable and fun making writing an automatic and natural skill.Children who write well perform better in school and feel proud of their work.
7 The basic foundation Strength and stability Sensory-motor abilities Fine motor coordination and graspingVisual-motor perceptionCognitionAttention
8 Strength and Stability In order for us to develop control over the smaller muscles of the hand we must have support or control in our trunk, and in all of the other joints leading up to the hand.The hand itself needs adequate strength to hold on to a writing utensil and isolate control in individual muscles.Watch for slumping, poor grasp pattern, or fatigue
9 Activities and technology for shoulder and postural stability Animal walks that encourage weight bearing on the arms, i.e.. Crab walk or bear walkGross motor activities/recess and PEUse of vertical board for painting or coloring with large random movementsVarious seating devices such as an air or foam wedge, seatbelt, T-stool, therapy ballSupportive positioningSlant boardsS’cool moves
10 Positioning Feet and back supported at a 90 degree angle Desk height about 2 inches above elbow resting at sideSometimes a seatbelt can add extra stability and help child to focus if needed
11 Slant boardsSlant boards can help with forearm and wrist support needed to isolate finger movements.Clips on slant boards can hold the paper in the appropriate position (30-45 degree angle) if bilateral coordination is difficult.Slant boards can also improve posture and visual awareness
12 Handwriting warm ups (Let’s Practice!) See posture preparation handout (from Handwriting without Tears)Brain gym, S’cool Moves, and Yoga Calm programs have an extensive program that can help integrate body and mind to improve learning potentialA student may need a specific program set up by an occupational therapist to meet their individual needsPut together your own routine to use regularly with the entire class before writing
13 Wood PiecesLearn the language of big line, little line, big curve and little curveLearn directionality-top, bottom, above, below, right, leftMat man teaches body awarenessLaminated capital letter cards with perceptual activities on the backMake letters and shapes on the blue mat or on the floor
15 Chalkboards Wet, dry, try Adult demonstrates correct letter formation Child uses small wet sponge to trace over letterChild dries with small piece of paper towelChild draws the letter with small chalkThere are large 2 lined chalkboards available for lower case practice
16 Other HWT activities/supports Roll a dough lettersStamp and see (magnadoodle)Music CD’sLined and gray block paperFlip crayonsWorkbooksCan go to their website for other activities, handouts and videoshwtears.com
17 How to hold the pencilThe pencil is pinched between the thumb pad and the index finger pad. The pencil rests on the middle finger. Can hold something in last 2 fingers.A-OK: 1. Make the A-OK sign 2. drop or tuck the other fingers 3. Place the pencil between the thumb and index finger padsPinch and flip: 1. Place pencil on table pointing away from you. 2. Pinch pencil and pick it up. Pinch the pencil where you should hold it-on the point where the point meets the wood. 3. With other hand hold the eraser and flip it around to the top side of hand.
18 Activities and technology to improve grasp patterns Playing with playdoh/putty (hiding objects in putty or rolling into log and making shapes)Playing tug of war with small strings, lace, etc.Form circles with thumb and index finger and raise to eyes for glassesEating food with utensilsRegular participation in fine motor games and art activities that require manipulation of objectsTry different types of writing utensilsTry various pencil grips
19 Workbooks for Printing Developmental-pre kindergarten, kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade levels for printingCapitals then lower caseTracing then copyingLetters, words, paragraphsDevelopmental progression for easier formation patterns and frequency of useTeach child’s name in correct upper and lower case
20 Workbook SequenceFirst workbook-Get set for school: coloring, learning shapes and tracing capital letters and numbersSecond workbook-Letters and numbers for me: copying upper case letters, lower case letters and numbersThird workbook-My printing book: Review letters using smaller lines, copying words and sentencesFourth workbook-Printing power: reviews letters, copying words, sentences and paragraphs
21 Capital letter sequence Frog jump capitals: FEDPBRNMStarting corner capitals: HKLUVWXYZCenter starting capitals: COQGSAITJ
22 Lower case letter sequence Same as capital: cosvw and tMagic c letters: adgMore vowels: uieTransition group: lkyjDiver letters: prnmhbFinal group: fqxz
23 Numbers Taught in numerical order They all fit into the chalkboard for capitalsCan use the gray block paperThere are no reversals with this methodThey all start at the top and use basic lines and curves1-7 starting in corner, 8 is center top, 9 is right top
24 Cursive Can be easier for some kids due to the flow Less stopping and startingGood to know how to read cursiveAnother chance to re-learn good handwriting mechanicsUsually taught in 3rd gradeOften sent home to learn
25 Cursive Workbooks Cursive handwriting and cursive success Teaches a clean, clear vertical style that is easy to write and read.Lower case letters are introduced first beginning with letters that are similar to printFocus on correct formation and connecting letters as well as fluency to write quickly and automaticallyExcellent teacher’s manual
26 2 lined Paper Less visually stimulating Consistent with workbooks The bottom line keeps the writing straight and the top line controls the size14 lower case letters fit exactly between the lines19 of 26 lower case letters begin exactly on the top line (exceptions are t,l,k,f,h,b and e)Use letter strip for referenceNo matter what type of lined paper they need to be taught how to use it.
27 Gray block paper Excellent for teaching capital letters and numbers Gray blocks are “pictures” of the chalkboardEasy to transfer what they have learned with chalk to paper and pencilA dot on the gray block can show exactly where to start the letter (top corners or center)Where do you start your letters? At the top!
28 Left handed Handwriting 10 percent of the general population is left handed.Possibly 1to 2 students per classroomSome people who write left handed do many activities right handed
29 Differences between left handed writers and right handed writers Right handers use the elbow as a pivot point to move pencil across the pageLeft handers move their entire forearm to move the pencil across the page
30 Problems with writing left handed Smearing inkDigging pencil into paperCovering writing and decreased visibility for spacingIncreased fatigueDecreased stability for writing
31 Accommodating left handed children Group left handed children togetherTeach correct body position (body to right of paper)Teach correct paper position/slant (30-45 degree slant to the right)Teach proper grip (tripod), 1 and ½ inches back from pencil tipKeep hand below line that is being written onIt is OK for letters to slant slightly backwards
32 Teaching Approaches Direct instruction: One on one or small group Practice should be fun yet organizedBuild a positive relationship with the childTake it at a relaxed speed and adapt according to the child’s needsKeep actual handwriting sessions short and sweet. (5-20 minutes)Do live demonstrations and encourage imitationTeach directionality conceptsMultisensory approachConsistency and repetitionSupervision to develop good habitsOpportunities for student self evaluation-circle their best letter
33 Specific Problems Poor grip Inappropriate pressure Difficulty forming lettersInappropriate spacingPoor sizing of lettersDifficulty staying on the line
34 Strategies to improve visual-motor perception Perceptual worksheets-tracing, mazes, finding hidden pictures, matchingVisual modelsVerbal cuesDifferent types of lined paper
35 Activities to improve finger isolation Use items to manipulate during math such as tongs to pick up marbles, coins or tokens, cotton balls or any small items.Songs that have different hand gestures or isolated finger motions such as thumbkin, itsy bitsy spider, etc.Cutting activities with adapted scissors if neededGames or art that require use of finger tips/thumbPush button toys that require use of one fingerFinger puppetsKeyboarding
36 Activities to improve accuracy Tracing or cutting on straight or curved linesRainbow writing-repetitive tracing with different colorsRaised lined paperBold linesMazes
37 Activities to improve bilateral coordination and lateralization Holding and turning paper when cuttingTying shoes, buttoning, zippingStringing beadsStabilizing paper when coloringVelcro mitts with ballsRacquets with balloonsBat and ball activitiesLarge screw and bolt activitiesWiping off tables with spongesBrain gym warm ups
38 Fine Motor Art Pictures with seeds and beans (use fingers or tweezers) Ripping, tearing, and crumpling paper to glue in the picturesPaint or draw using an easelCollages either cutting or tearing the pictures
39 Fine Motor GamesPick up sticks, big bird game, kerplunk, jenga, don’t break the ice, hiho cherrios, bed bug game, flees on fred, light brightCard games to work on memory and fine controlAnimal walks in relays to complete puzzle activities, string beads,etc.
40 Activities and technology to improve sensory-motor abilities Use different media to play or draw in such as water, sand, beans, gak, pudding, clayMystery writing-drawing shapes/letters on friend’s backRainbow writing-using different colors to trace over same shape/letter many timesWrite in the air using index finger-can hold a piece of sponge with the rest of the handUse a wet sponge strip to write on chalkboardSimon says game
41 Sensory-motor continued Sit on less stable surface such as air cushion, therapy ball or t-stoolUse a vibrating penProvide consistent instruction and repetition for motor planningProvide visual, and auditory cues
42 Questions? We are all still learning We are happy to help Call us if questions arise later
43 Thanks For helping increase kid’s self esteem For teaching a skill that will be used in daily lifeFor helping kids be successfulYou get an A!