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Copywork/handwriting question


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My 2nd grader does not have an official handwriting program; instead, I bought him a copywork book from Queen's. His handwriting is quite sloppy most of the time, despite constant reminders to write as neatly as he can. I think part of the problem is the small spaces in the copywork book; he may not be ready for that (he has trouble writing neatly on wide-ruled notebook paper too, which we use for spelling tests and English).


The way I see it, he is getting lots of "copywork" by writing his spelling words, writing sentences for English, etc. If the Queen's copywork notebook is not serving the purpose I had intended (handwriting practice), should I drop it and pick up something for handwriting instead (something with bigger lines?).


My 3rd grader, on the other hand, is loving her copywork book from Queen's; she actually takes the time to read the poems she is copying, and she writes very neatly. I think my 2nd grader is just rushing through it, not really paying attention to what he is writing, and he's certainly not writing neatly.



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You could have him copy onto bigger handwriting paper and sit with him to make sure his form is correct. The donnayoung site has printable handwriting paper in differant sizes.


I've noticed that my son, 3rd grade, is rushing through anything he has to write and it's quiet sloppy. If I tell him to slow down and write neatly he can. Even with his sloppy writing I see he has devolped a more consistant letter size this year over what he was capable of last year.

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Some kids seriously don't *see* that baseline as they write and will have messy writing even though they've had plenty of handwriting instruction. Some kids have visual perception problems or lack hand-eye coordination, and these things come to play in writing. Plus, I know he broke that arm a while back (doh!;)) and that may still have some lingering effects, if nothing less than extending the time it takes for him to master a fm skill with that hand.


Have you tried the "less is more" approach? Maybe have him only do a few words at a time instead of a whole lesson. Get to the point where his writing is neat and then begin giving longer assignments. Almost everyday last year, ds7 had a page of letters to copy - and he only had to write 1 *perfect* copy of each letter. The daily repetition + the light daily load made for solid progress. He so focused on getting 1 perfect in order to get out of doing more that it eventually became muscle memory.


I don't think he needs a handwriting "program" unless he's not forming letters correctly. I'd simply put away the copybook for several weeks, and give him letters to write - 1 perfect copy per day.

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