How to Encourage Careful Handwriting

Learning to write well formed letters is one of my homeschool goals.

There are four techniques that make a difference in encouraging my children to feel greater intrinsic motivation to write carefully.

Give Ample Time to Practice Writing

Don’t rush it. Allow more than enough time to practice writing. Decrease the distractions in the room. Simplify the words to be written. We find that it works best to copy type written material rather than producing new sentences, because then there isn’t any worry about spelling or word order.

Write With A Beautiful Tool

The actual writing implement will have a big impact on how the child feels about their writing. Invite your child to sample from many pens, perhaps even writing the same sentence three or four times each with a different tool. Personally, I love the way it feels to write with markers. We’ve even done our writing with glow-in-the-dark pens!

Vary the Type of Writing

Write with one word on each line. Write diagonal on the page. Write with overlapping lines in multiple colors. Write very big and then write very small. Write on different types of papers. The variety will lend interest to the results.

Publish the Writing

Find a way to celebrate your child’s writing. Publishing doesn’t have to be fancy. You can simply hang it on the fridge, or put it in a frame. You can send it to a penpal. Demonstrate you value the writing your child produces by treating it as a treasured item.

By following these four tips, I hope you also find success in encouraging your children to write well!

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