At Tudor Grange Samworth Academy, we believe that children must be able to write with ease, speed and legibility to maximise the fluency, quality and quantity of their work. Cursive handwriting teaches pupils to join letters and words as a series of flowing movements and patterns. If linked with spelling practice it can also aid accurate spelling as it helps children to develop a sense of whole words and common letter strings.
Teaching and learning
Pupils in lower Key Stage 2 practise their handwriting by using the ‘PenPals’ handwriting scheme. In years 5 and 6 there is handwriting and spelling practice but only those who are not yet forming and joining their letters correctly receive formal handwriting teaching. Rather, pupils will be given the opportunity to develop upon their handwriting skills so that they are able to become fluent and speedy writers.
Handwriting activities are differentiated according to individual children’s needs, whilst also reinforcing text, sentence and word level objectives. Handwriting practice is linked to spelling so that all children can achieve a good standard of writing and spelling.
We aim for children to:
- Achieve a neat, legible style with correctly formed letters in cursive handwriting.
- Develop flow and speed.
- Eventually produce the letters automatically and in their independent writing.
In order to achieve these aims, the following principles are followed:
- Handwriting is taught regularly and systematically in classes, groups or individually as appropriate.
- Patterns are used initially, by writing with a variety of tools and using multisensory methods, to help free flowing hand motions and to develop muscle strength.
- Correct pencil hold and letter formation are taught from the beginning and handwriting is frequently linked with spelling.
- When marking or writing comments, members of staff use cursive handwriting as appropriate.
- Teachers model cursive script by using it on IWB and whiteboards/flipcharts etc.
- Display writing throughout the school includes cursive writing and computer generated writing.
Provision for left handed children
Left-handed children always sit on the left side of right-handed children, so their elbows don’t bump and jog each other. They are encouraged to find a comfortable orientation for their paper, usually slightly to the left of centre of their body, and to have their fingers about 1.5 cm from the point of their pencil.
Resources and writing materials
Once a child is considered to have achieved a consistent, cursive style they will be granted a pen licence allowing them to use a pen (Handwriting pen). Guidelines may be used with plain paper.
The SENCO has resources for those who have difficulties with fine motor skills – letter shapes, magnet boards, sand trays etc.
How handwriting is taught
Following on from KS1 the children continue to have direct teaching and regular practice of handwriting. We aim for them to develop a clear and fluent style and, by the end of Key Stage 2, be able to adapt their handwriting for the following different purposes:
- A neat legible hand for finished, presented work.
- A faster script for notes.
- Print for labelling maps or diagrams.
Handwriting will be taught on a weekly basis.
Expectations for each year