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Teaching cursive to older students


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My kids spent the first part/most of their elementary years in PS. When I finally brought them home, we had a rough start, and I was more focused on figuring out what level to start them on in subjects than the "basics" I guess.


My son's handwriting is HORRIBLE. I get on him about it all the time, and he will "fix" it, but then it gets bad again. I know he wasn't taught cursive in school before I pulled them out, because he came home one day and said the teachers were freaking out that they only had 2 weeks to teach it. (This was 3rd grade, the state test took up most of the year).


My daughter asked me the other day for some help with her cursive; she's done a little bit, but she's asking for more guidance. Is there anything I can get to do a small amount of work a day to help them out with this?

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I teach cursive to LD adults.


I use the instructions in Spalding's Writing Road to Reading 6th edition. I use the uppercase manuscript instead of the uppercase cursive, though. They need the uppercase manuscript for mapwork and handwritten envelopes, and it is also easier to read for their friends who have not learned cursive. So far just uppercase manuscript has been accepted on all social service and government forms they have filled out. I too have started filling out forms in uppercase to see if any of them get rejected. So far so good.


So, so far it looks like lowercase cursive and uppercase manuscript serves all the needs of my students, and myself.


The students copy the charts from How to Tutor for handwriting practice, using the order of instruction suggested in the handwriting section, but at a faster rate than suggested.




Don Potter's website seems to have disappeared, but he uses Alpha-Phonics and a slanted and more ornate style of handwriting with adult prisoners. Alpha-Phonics is almost identical to How to Tutor, lesson per lesson, and by the same author.


He and I are both totally OCD about this cursive thing. :tongue_smilie:

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oh man, I totally forgot about all the different styles. How do you know which is best to chose?


I just let my kids pick the style they like best and stick to it. So far the only difference I notice is how the Uppercase Q is written.


I treat cursive as the precursor to calligraphy though.


He and I are both totally OCD about this cursive thing.


Found this link to old penmanship textbooks. Thought you might like to take a look

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Thanks! I couldn't get it to load for a few days and when it still wasn't coming up in Google, I thought it was still down.


Found this link to old penmanship textbooks. Thought you might like to take a look


The champion lessons look particularly helpful for slanted. Teaching vertical, eliminates the need for all the slanted and oval practice, but slanted is pretty and I think more comfortable for the hand for RIGHT HANDED people who writes a LOT.


I have too many left-handed students to teach slanted. Vertical is better for them.


This Carson-Dellosa workbook shows both vertical and slanted cursive. They suggest slanted for right-hand and vertical for left-hand. I just teach everyone vertical.

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I started teaching my DD this year (7th) and she had never learned cursive either. She is using the Logic of English program and doing very well with it. She really has been doing it slower than I would like, but there are so many other things to do :-)

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It's a real challenge to introduce cursive to an older student.


I don't require any writing from a student other than what we have covered in HTT.


First I introduce all the manuscript uppercase letters, so they can do map work.


Then I start introducing the lowercase cursive letters, but until I introduce them all I don't even require them to copy anything with letters not introduced yet.


Once all the lowercase letters are introduced I require copying, but all original writing has to be only phonograms that have been covered in phonics already. So we can do some basic sentence composition work with words with mostly short vowels only. And copywork.


I believe Romalda Spalding that to write in cursive a student needs to be spelling in syllables. So I only require writing of words the student can spell. It's a slow start.


I've been pushed to be very creative with output from students. And I use it as a time to increase their silent reading stamina, and to teach them to love being read to. I teach them how efficient documentary watching is as a learning tool. I use the Stick Figuring Through the Bible curriculum. The maps as I said.


Cursive is the core of all my other choices. Everything is designed to ensure the transition is successful. Is it worth it? I don't know. But...there is something so fundamentally liberating about being confident about one's handwriting. It's like a person who has gone through life with closed mouth smiles to cover up rotten teach, finally being able to laugh with an open mouth.

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