Sunday, February 5, 2012

Handwriting- Breakthrough!

I have finally discovered THE method to teach Sonshine writing! I have tried tracing, no- tracing, ipad, using paint, this and that but all didn't work until now.

Prior to this, he seemed to have difficulty regurgitating the letters in writing although he knows how it looks like in his head. Even if he could write, weeks later he is back to square one. It also didn't help that he dislikes- maybe even hates, to write, color, draw whatever requires him to use a pen! So there was no motivation for him to work on it.

Admittedly, i am not sure he's improved because of this method or if it's the school or simply he is developmentally ready. But what i am certain of is, this method helped him to recall the strokes of each letter.

Enough said! So what is this method i am ranting about? Spalding Method!

The key to helping sonshine to write is that this method uses the clock as a reference. Here's how:


To write the letter 'a', tell the child to start at 2'oclock, draw round the clock & back to 2 o'clock and without lifting the pen, draw a straight line down.

Note: i am not using Spalding's exact words. I talked through with N using my own words so that he can understand. I also made my own clock so that N could practise writing on it to get a better visual. But after a few demostrations, he was able to write without the clock- just visualising it in his head.


The spalding method is very precise. You have to read it yourself to know what i mean. I am not sure if it expects even preschoolers to write accurately i.e. points must touch the base line, start from mid point mark for small letters.

While i am happy with N's writing, i think it fails Spalding expectations. For instance the letter 'd', the bottom points MUST touch the base line, the curve MUST not exceed the mid-point mark. But as you can see, sonshine missed all the specific marks (i wrote the the first letters). Still, i am already over the moon that he can write confidently! But i still want him to work on being precise, writing more accurately on paper.


Practising writing the letters 'a', 'g' and 'o'.

I notice that it is very common that preschoolers tend to write 'c', 's', 'd', 'b' etc in the opposite direction. The spalding method helped N to overcome this. Previously, he always wrote 'c' and 's' in the opposite direction. But after telling him that 'c' starts at 2 o'clock, toward 10 o'clock and stops at 4 o'clock- he is able to write it correctly.

I'll share in another post how i taught N to remember how to write 'b' and 'd' without confusing the 2.


To wrap up what he learnt, i made this small writing booklet. The words all include the letters he learnt (we started learning to write letters that start from the 2 o'clock points). At the same time, he can learn spelling! :P


I am very proud of his writing (though it probably fails in Spalding's books!).

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