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Melissa in Australia

print penmanship recommendations

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Hi guys.

 I am in need of a print penmanship recommendation for the twins. They have significant special needs and very complex learning problems

 We are not going to move on to cursive as they have such a huge difficulty with the concept that a letter symbolises a sound that I want to keep it as simple as possible and have their writing resembling reading text as much as possible.

 We have just about completed all books of Progressive Printing . http://www.progressivephonics.com/handwriting/lowercase-letters One twin really struggles with letter formation ( very primitive at this stage) the other twin can form the letters with the correct movements but they are big and hard to read. We need a LOTS of practice. I don't want to repeat Progressive phonics as when I printed it out I already printed it with doubles of all pages and they are so proud of having finished them. they have them all stacked up on the bookshelf so proud of all the work they have done. I need to give them the feeling of progressing to the next level even though they aren't they are just going sideways

 we are already doing copywork, plus copying what I write short sentences(Narration) plus WWE. plus copying short sentences in History and Science

 what I need is a penmanship curriculum that has print without little arrows all over it or funny structure boxes to form the letters in - both of these are extremely confusing to the twins as they try to copy the arrows and cannot form the letter in a little box. Something in a similar format to Progressive Printing would be terrific if that exists.

 I do not want to create my own with - I just don't have the energy to do this

 

thank you 

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Thanks Lori  Those both look excellent. I will get the TPT one and print it out to use in the future

At the moment the twins are not quite up to that level of writing yet. Even if the text is written immediately above on exactly the same type of lines they struggle to copy it in a readable way. We are using this for copywork at the moment and they find it very challenging https://www.homeschoolingdownunder.com/productsamples/Mother_Goose_Sample.pdf . 

 

  They really need something with more letter formation type stuff.

 

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I used this for my kids before we did "joined up" writing:

https://www.soundfoundations.co.uk/en_US/product/handwriting-tracing-sheets/

Mainly, I used the first page and printed LOTS of copies! I made it a sound game where I said the letter sound and they found and traced it. You could laminate it and use Wet Erase markers. I only used the printing pages.

I also like Handwriting Without Tears books and paper but that doesn't sound like what you are needing.

How about unlined paper ala Waldorf?

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Not a curriculum, but have you looked at something like School-Rite guides?  They're plastic handwriting aids and fit on top of Kindergarten paper.  They have three styles (ZB, D'Nealian, cursive).  I use them to work on size and formation before letting a kid off on their own.

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LOE has textured handwriting flashcards of strokes and letters.  The back of the card has stroke names in the letter, so it is said as they form letter, like, "Curve, roll, swing, down."

LOE Handwriting

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                                            Didax Educational Resources Sandpapers Letters Boxed Set                                       

I used these when my ds was at that stage. We would trace the letters with our fingers while saying the sounds. We'd make them on our backs. We wrote in sand trays. HIGHLY recommend sand trays. Oh we used salt. Same idea, lol.

There was a program that had the basic strokes, and I can't remember the name. It's sorta like HWT but not so blocky.

It sounds like they're already doing a lot of writing. Have you thought of doing something *different* like doodling, complete the drawings, grid drawings, that kind of thing? Has their VMI (visual motor integration) been checked? I think you could separate the VMI and the sound to writing issues. You don't want them to hate writing by doing a lot of writing. Or at least that's how it is with my ds. When OTs try to do a lot of writing with him, he shuts down. They try to go at it other ways, hitting the VMI issue. 

I think as far as the sound to written connection, I think that's a combo of maturity and multi-sensory till it clicks. Have you tried LIPS? I'm a super huge fan. You could use the LIPS faces plus the sandpaper letters and blank tiles. So they would form the word (something simple, CVC, CCVCC, whatever) with the LIPS then sub them for blank tiles then trade the blank tiles for the sandpaper letters they trace then trade the sandpaper letters for letter magnets.

That's what we did at least.

Edited by PeterPan
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12 hours ago, Melissa in Australia said:

At the moment the twins are not quite up to that level of writing yet... They really need something with more letter formation type stuff.

 

12 hours ago, Melissa in Australia said:

This is perfect... I didn't see it the first time I looked at your post


I realized what you really needed AFTER posting, as that's when I looked at your sample, so I went back and added that other link -- all that to say, you didn't miss it the first time around -- I was adding after you looked, LOL. (:D

Peter Pan's ideas about doodling, finishing sketches, etc. is a great one, and it also reminded me of Callirobics (the ages 4-7 level). I used the ages 7-14 level with DS#2 when he was in high school (which is when I stumbled over Callirobics), and between doing Callirobics daily for 4-5 minutes, and doing Dianne Craft's writing 8s exercise daily (about 3 letters of the alphabet per day), both really helped make the physical act of writing become much more natural for him. And the writing 8s exercise really helped with connecting the brain hemisphere halves. You might find some of the techniques in her Brain Integration manual useful -- it is all about doing things that help the 2 brain hemispheres connect. You might poke around on her website for articles and videos to get a feel for if any of her stuff might be a fit for your boys. (And here's the first of a 3-part video about her brain integration therapy.)

Just throwing that out there, in case it is of help. :) Warmest regards, Lori D.

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Fwiw, these sound like kids who are going to get SLD writing labels eventually. It's ok to pick an area not to do well in. We were just talking about this on LC, about regrets with working on ability to hand write, how you know when to keep going and when to throw in the towel, how you balance that with time it's taking away from other things, etc. 

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We have sandpaper letters as well. and do use them

thanks guys for all the ideas etc.  We have a team of specialists working with us. What I am really after is ideas for a writing curriculum as we need to keep cycling over the same level with very very slow progression. they need to feel that they are finishing one thing and moving onto the next when the reality is they are moving sideways. 

we treat reading as a separate thing to learning how to form and write letters. their ability to read is way better than their ability to write

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1 minute ago, PeterPan said:

Fwiw, these sound like kids who are going to get SLD writing labels eventually. It's ok to pick an area not to do well in. We were just talking about this on LC, about regrets with working on ability to hand write, how you know when to keep going and when to throw in the towel, how you balance that with time it's taking away from other things, etc. 

They both have already been diagnosed with  Severe language Deficiencies  and Intellectual disabilities

they are going to  get FASD labels very soon- 

progress happens - but very very slowly. the key I have found is to let them feel that they are making progress. they need the visual of a finished pile of completed books so they can feel some pride in their achievement. not only are we working on their education but also on them feeling proud and the ability to achieve

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Most OTs trying to work with my ds have pushed handwriting before the VMI skills were in place.

1 hour ago, Melissa in Australia said:

they need the visual of a finished pile of completed books so they can feel some pride in their achievement. not only are we working on their education but also on them feeling proud and the ability to achieve

I totally respect this! It's a lot of how I work with my ds. He gets a clipboard of work and he knows he did something. Then it goes into his bin for the year of work to see it pile up. For us, we do everything single pages at a time, so I'm always looking for ebooks, things I can print as single pages. 

TeacherCreatedResources was one of my favorite places to find stuff. This is cute https://www.teachercreated.com/products/simple-graph-art-0095

https://www.spelfabet.com.au  Have you looked at spelfabet? It has them fill in single letters and only write the full word the last day. You could make letter tiles they could pull down to form the words to have a model. And it's from Australia, meaning some of the words that are unusual for us would be perfect for you.

https://www.carsondellosa.com/104326-eb--letters-uppercase-and-lowercase-workbook-grade-pk-k-ebook-104326-eb  I also get a lot from Carson Dellosa. 

https://www.carsondellosa.com/804074-eb--sight-words-secret-codes-puzzles-resource-book-grade-k-1-ebook-804074-eb  This is going to be a lot harder, because it involves coding. The OT had my ds doing a lot of coding last year because it was motivating to him. It's always good to think about motivation and context, where they might find it normal/natural to use their writing. My ds likes to write prices to play store, for instance. He'll write menus for a play restaurant. That kind of thing. It's just a word at a time, but it's stuff he WANTS to write for his own play.

And I'll just say this for full disclosure, my ds was writing those words and store signs at 9 and 10, not 7.

 

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